There are a number of fun songs left off this special series volume - songs from movies like Tickle Me and The Trouble With Girls... that did not use an opening tune with the same title as the movie. If that's a little wierd (for the more casual fan), check out the inclusion of "Stay Away, Joe" - it was not used in the movie, deferring to the "Greensleeves"-based "Stay Away"!.
Anway, the point in most of these numbers is *fun*, so let's have some: "Roustabout" gets a nice technological makeover - I've never heard echo on vinyl or CD on this catchy, though slight, offer. I believe the movie itself has echo on this opener. Drums are more to the fore on "Speedway" and "Easy Come, Easy Go", so the work of people like Hal Blaine, D.J. Fontana, and Buddy Harman is better appreciated. Mysteriously, "Double Trouble", a real rocker featuring a classy horn arrangement, is a sad step backwards sonically - the drums are nearly lost, as in the original flat mix on vinyl. A serious disappointment here is with "Girl Happy", once again not pitch adjusted. My theory is that the speeded-up take was produced to fit into the time constraints of the opening credits - check it out, folks! [Note that the recording year is actually 1964, not 1967, as printed]. Somewhere beneath the cartoonish effects is a strong rocker - with resonant echoes of Little Richard's "The Girl Can't Help It"!
Elvis comes very close to straight-ahead "Blue-Eyed Soul" on "Spinout". The beat and instrumentation are completely contemporary, but once again the lead vocal is too far forward. A bit of reverb also might have helped.
The aforementioned "Speedway", underlying another race-car deal, does have good balance, although the echo sounds somewhat artificial. This is a lost gem, undoubtedly - too bad that by '67-'68, it seemed that less and less listeners cared.
Note that "Follow That Dream" is an excellent alternate take - we get a Sun Records "wellll" from Big El on this on! Another uptempo standout is the Leiber and Stoller "Girls! Girls! Girls!", benefitting from the remix.
Michael Hill's liner notes are great.