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Elvis, Raw and Vital,
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This review is from: The Complete '68 Comeback Special (The 40th Anniversary Edition) (Audio CD)Back in early 1968 Elvis Presley was far from the 'King', instead he was a half forgotten rocker from the 1950s who was churning such "classic" films as Clambake! His songs, such as 'Guitar Man', were barely troubling all but the lowest reaches of the pop charts - just scraped the top 40 in the US, whilst in the UK it reached the dizzy heights of 16! So was the man washed up?, had his time come and gone?, could he no longer cut it as a live act? For anyone of a certain age they will know the answer, but for the rest I suggest putting on this blistering 4 cd set and discover a man, a performer blasting away the years, the doubters, the rubbish films etc and getting back to basics! Here we hear Presley as a raw and vital act once again, his voice raspy and hoarse - just perfect for belting out those rock 'n' roll numbers, yet controlled enough to make the most delicate of ballads live and breath. When the show was aired on television at the end of 1968 the effect was immediate and long lasting - Elvis was back, and this time for good!
Presley may never have been a true innovator in the same way as Dylan or the Beatles etc may have, he may have never written a single song of his own, but when he sang with passion and heart the world listened, and continues to listen to this day. A lot of this was undoubtly down to this show, a show in which he showed the world he still had what it took - The King was dead, Long Live The King! Ironically enough the closet British lp that this remains me of is John Lennon's 'Rock and Roll', another album in which an artist stips away all the polish and shine and gets back to some good, old fashioned ballsy rocking!
A quick word on the package. The way the cds are held in the case leaves a bit to be desired, but the booklet is very good with some rare photos and good potted history on the show itself.