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18 Reviews
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful
The foremost songwriter of his generation has always - well, nearly always - been able to be relied upon to come up with the goods and this is not only an absolute belter of a live album but fantastic value at £13 for a CD and a DVD. I doubt whether it will convert many people but then whenever did a live album do that? It is, however, a superb show, great fun to watch...
Published on 8 April 2012 by D. J. CROZIER

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Energetic live performance but lacks subtlety of originals
This certainly whets the appetite for seeing Costello live again in the near future - lots of energy in the performances. However, it's fairly raw live material and the songs lack the subtlety of the originals - so not a good choice if you'd be buying it in lieu of a Greatest Hits package, or to listen reflectively...
Published on 21 May 2012 by M. Deans


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5.0 out of 5 stars Just like being at the concert, 2 July 2013
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Just like a concert this has new and old classics. We saw elvis and the importers a day after getting this and it thus acts like a great souvenir.
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4.0 out of 5 stars If you only go to one concert......, 26 Jan 2013
As previous reviewers have said, this is probably not for the casual fan. I saw Elvis perform the 'songbook' at Newcastle last year, so had to get this. This album gives you great insight into the concept of the spinning wheel tour and shows the sheer energy and variety of the evening's performance. With only a three exceptions all the songs work well for me. I could have done without the cover of 'Out of Time', the Bangles singing 'Tear of your own Head' and 'Stella Hurt'. If he'd included 'Party Girl', 'Couldn't call it Unexpected' and 'Love for Tender', then it would be a pretty perfect setlist. But given the number of songs he's written you can't please everybody - going to see him at York in June so maybe they'll be included there. If you only go to one concert this year then you must go see him perform - he must be our most under-rated songwriter of the last 35 years. Strange that he's more highly rated in America than he is here.
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11 of 15 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars 'Not at this price', Elvis Costello, 22 Dec 2011
By 
John Cook (Sussex) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
As covered on the front of The Times newspaper, Elvis Costello recommended to his fans not to buy this collection at this ridiculous price. There are plenty of other places to start with the brilliant EC, just not here!!
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4 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars ignore andrew goodman's review, 23 May 2012
Mr Goodman, self-styled rock god, is a tone-deaf idiot who wouldn't recognise talent if it was written in grease on the back of a tour bus. Elvis is very much in the building; Mr Goodman is locked in a Portaloo of his own making.
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8 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars you might want to wait for the live album, 15 Dec 2011
By 
Mr. H "Mr H" (Embra) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)   
You know, I've never actually heard an Elvis Costello album. I mean, I remember him as Elvis Costello from the eighties, when he used to be on Top Of The Pops nasally whining about something or other, but I've never actually listened to a whole one. So what better way to start than with a box set that Mr MacManus has been busy telling people not to buy. His words were;

"We at [...] find ourselves unable to recommend `The Return Of The Spectacular Spinning Songbook' as the price appears to be either a misprint or a satire. All our attempts to have this number revised have been fruitless so we are taking the following unusual step. If you want to buy something special for your loved one at this time of seasonal giving, we suggest, `Ambassador Of Jazz' - a cute little imitation suitcase containing ten re-mastered albums by one of the most beautiful and loving revolutionaries who ever lived - Louis Armstrong. Frankly the music is vastly superior. If you should still want the component items in the above mentioned elaborate hoax, they will be available separately at a more affordable price in the New Year, unless you are one of those pirates who imagines they are evangelists or that other people's rights absolve their own thievery, in which case this is between you and your dim conscience."

So there you go, buy Louis Armstrong instead. Or, if you do have £212.99 to spare, you could get this box set, which has tunes taken from two Los Angeles dates he played earlier this year as part of the Spectacular Spinning Songbook tour. So that's a CD, a DVD, a 10-inch vinyl EP, a hardcover photobook, a diary by Costello about each gig, a tour poster and a limited-edition postcard, all limited to 1,500 copies. So, if they all sell out that's (adds in head just to show off) £319,485. Sweet. Mind you, the Louis Armstrong still kicks in at £113.99, so Mr MacManus must still have some well off followers.

Right, the music. The CD has 16 tracks taken from both nights and the EP has a further four tracks. Over in DVD land, you get film of the second night of the shows, featuring a guest appearance by Bangles goddess Susanna Hoffs (any excuse to fire up the photo database - sighs). If you've come here looking for a greatest hits set, you're in the weong place. For sure, you're getting 'Alison', 'Pump It Up' and 'Watching The Detectives', all of which are lapped up by a typical US audience. Cue whooping and a -hollering, but there are also some songs from deep in his catalogue which will appeal to people who know more about it than me (anyone, then). Although I did particularly enjoy the new to me, but very old Elvis number, 'Mystery Dance'.

Some of the music sounds a bit ragged, but that actually makes it seem more alive, and the keyboards of Steve Nieve are particularly splendid. Whether it's worth the very large amount of money they're asking for, I will leave up to the besotted Elvis Costello fans out there. More casual fans should wait for the live album version next year.
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2 of 9 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars God Give me strength!!!!!!!!, 12 Jun 2012
By 
Alan D. Evans "Big Al" (London) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Well, Mr Goodman got a battering for writing a bad review of whiney Mr Costello well I'm afraid I have to agree with him! These old singers have had their day!! I used to love Costello but now what has he become? An Albert Hall singalong big head with an annoying voice!!
How do you remove comments when you don't like what they say? Poor Mr Goodman had nearly all his removed! GOD GIVE ME STRENGTH!!!!!!!
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1 of 10 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars The Saint, 3 Nov 2012
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I made a bad choice with this one. I'm no expert but this live recording was poor and I like my music to be melodious. No, not for me.

Amazon, as always, were ahead of time in their forecast of delivery and I'm not complaining - this one is down to a poor choice.
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4 of 51 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Only Artist who can murder his own songs!!!, 7 April 2012
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I used to like Elvis Costello especially during the late 70's and early 80's but now seems to be the only artist that can Murder his own songs as well as other artists. If you do not believe me , listen to Elvis's version of SHE.
Has to be on my list of one of the most over rated Music Artists of All-Time.
I have just listened to all of this album and again is one of the most waste of time albums EVER!!!.
The trouble with this album is basically that Elvis cannot sing for toffee's,everything is aaayy ohhhh ooooh!!!and his vocals are just dire.
Elvis was loads better when he was backed by The Attractions but this lot sound like a Bottom of the Bill Pub Band and why does Elvis always have to give his Albums weird titles as they never sell anyway.
I prefer Abbott and Costello to this!!!!!
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