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Too Low For Zero Extra tracks, Original recording reissued, Original recording remastered

4.8 out of 5 stars 32 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Audio CD (1 Jun. 1998)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Extra tracks, Original recording reissued, Original recording remastered
  • Label: Virgin EMI
  • ASIN: B000009EJU
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 11,404 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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Product Description

Product Description

titolo-too low for zeroartista-elton john etichetta-mercuryn. dischi1data1 giugno 1998supportocd audiogenerepop e rock internazionale-brani----1.cold as christmasascolta2.i'm still standingascolta3.too low for zeroascolta4.religionascolta5.i guess that's why they call it the bluesascolta6.crystalascolta7.kiss the brideascolta8.whipping boyascolta9.saintascolta10.one more arrowascolta11.earn while you learn (bonus track)ascolta12.dreamboat (bonus track)ascolta13.the retreat (bonus t

BBC Review

Too Low for Zero marks the reunion of Elton John with lyricist Bernie Taupin after a seven-year period of working with various other writers, and sees John’s music advance to the breezy, stately tunes that characterise his later period. The change is thematic too, so he deals with ‘the biggies’ of religion and complicated relationships rather than the rather more intense character-led works of previous records. In truth, this yields some mixed results in terms of how relatable the songs are to anyone raised remembering when rock was young, but the whole is a rewarding, sometimes remarkable work.

He begins with one of those more personal works, though. Cold as Christmas (In the Middle of the Year) is a terribly sad portrait of marital decay, told through relayed phone calls and accompanied by John’s piano at its gloopiest – basically, it’s textbook stuff. Those bigger ideas begin to seep through as we reach the middle of the record – Religion may be told from a singular perspective, but it’s a lofty attempt to show inconsistencies in one of pop’s more difficult areas to traverse. A rollicking stomp it may be, but it probably takes longer than the song's four minutes to unpick the issue (though John made his feelings clear in a 2006 interview when he suggested religion be banned altogether).

Most notably, this often-belting record spawned two of Elton John’s biggest and best singles, I’m Still Standing and I Guess That’s Why They Call It the Blues. The first of those forms an umbrella for the album’s themes: Elton’s back, and stronger than ever (at least in intent). Indeed, the rockers on this record are among his very best – the Bowie-esque friskiness of Crystal and the double-whammy of Kiss the Bride and Whipping Boy are all exemplary, unfussy workouts. I Guess That’s Why They Call It the Blues forms another main thematic device, of epic relationship worries, but is by far the strongest example thanks to its casual sense of regret, of a genuine ache to be with his lover.

Falsetto on the concluding One More Arrow shows John portraying vulnerability with affecting ease, and brings to a close a fine record – exactly when he needed one. He may have released better works overall in the 70s, but with Taupin back on board Too Low for Zero is still a winner. Thoroughly entertaining throughout, and the return to form Elton John required.

--Daniel Ross

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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

By Antony May TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 12 Dec. 2008
Format: Audio CD
Not only is 'Too Low For Zero' an excellent Elton John album, it is also one of the Lp's that remind you so much of the 80's. Containing the seminal 80's single 'I'm Still Standing', the rocky, rousing and fun 'Kiss The Bride', and two typical Elton John songs 'Cold As Christmas (In The Middle Of The Year)' and ' I Guess That's Why They Call It The Blues' it contains plenty of hits. Just this fact alone is enough to make you dream back to those heady days of the 80's when the singles chart meant something and a hit was a hit because it sold records not downloads...

But, it is not just for nostalgic reasons that this album scores a perfect 5 stars. ALL of the songs on the original album are winners and there is plenty of variety. The title track and 'Crystal' have a synthy feel to them and are rather experimental, while 'Saint' is a nice romantic song (and could have been a single on a lesser record). 'One More Arrow' is a very sad song (something that Sir Elton has always excelled in) and all strings and violins and 'Whipping Boy' is a rocky fun song in the vein of 'Kiss The Bride'.

This remastered re-issue has other factors that add to the thrill however! There is another of John Tobler's insightful essays contained in the booklet, the re-mastered sound is great AND the cd has been intelligently put together so the 'extra tracks' have been put onto the disc after a suitable gap from the end of the original album set. This is important because (getting all nostalgic again) 'Too Low For Zero' comes from an era when the was a definite art to making an album. Tracks were not just 'squeezed' onto a cd to fill up 70 odd minutes, each song was carefully placed to create the perfect listen.

Finally, the extra tracks are a joy in themselves!
Read more ›
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Something of a comeback album for Elton John, or perhaps just a return to form. Whichever, this is one his finest releases, full of energy, enthusiasm and sensational songs. The album kicks off with a ballad that is largely-forgotten, but which ranks among his very best compositions. With a gorgeous melody, moving lyric and sincere vocal, it's got everything. Other treats include the classic 'I Guess That's Why They Call it the Blues', a song so clever and beguiling, it's hard to believe. Listen out too for the catchy, if over-long, 'Crystal' and the energetic 'I'm Still Standing'. So much here to relish; Elton was on top form this time around.
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I have just taken delivery of my remastered copy of Too Low For Zero by the one & only Elton John, back in 1985 I came across this album on LP & I can truly say I played it to death it's a classic I do have this album on CD but thought it worth buying the remastered version as I fined them as close to the original LP as you can get on CD format plus when playing these albums back there as fresh as the day they were recorded, Let me get back to this album, all the songs on the album are classic Elton John & Bernie Taupin we all know that I'm Still Standing & I guess That's Why They Call It The Blues were big hits but I love all the songs on the album One More Arrow & Saint to myself are first class.
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After taking a break from one another, Elton john and Bernie Taupin get together and produce this great comeback eighties album.
Classic tracks include: I'm Still Standing,Cold As Christmas,I Guess That's Why They Call It The Blues and Kiss The Bride.A return to form on this album which put Elton John right back in the top of the charts both here in the UK and in America.A great comeback album with Steve Wonder playing Harmonica on I Guess That's Why They Call It The Blues.
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By A Customer on 22 Dec. 2003
Format: Audio CD
this is one of those albums that i listened to as a youngster, and then 15 years later you hear a song at a certain moment and it takes you right back and you know straight away where it came from. this is one of the best albums i've heard (i listen to anything and everything), for it's simplicity and 'perfect-for-winter' feel. if you've not heard elton's early-to-mid stuff, this is a very good place to start. enjoy!
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By Peter Durward Harris #1 HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWER on 10 Feb. 2004
Format: Audio CD
Ultimately, Elton will be remembered primarily for his string of hits in the seventies although he has continued to make great music ever since. Nevertheless, there have been some periods that have been more successful than others. Prior to the release of this album, Elton had been going through one of his less successful periods. There were signs of a revival on his previous album, which yielded the UK top ten hit, Blue eyes, but this album went way beyond that, giving him two major UK hits and two lesser UK hits, a pattern mirrored almost exactly in the USA.
The album reflects the time in which it was recorded. Synthesizers were fashionable in 1983 and plenty of use is made of them here, but they do not drown out the music or Elton's excellent vocals.
The two big hits here on both sides of the Atlantic were I'm still standing and I guess that's why they call it the blues. Kiss the bride was a lesser hit in both counties. Cold as Christmas also charted in the UK – I don't know whether it did or not in the USA. All these hits are excellent, but there are other fine songs here too, including the title track, Religion, Crystal and Saint. The most intriguing is One more arrow, obviously about somebody that Elton knew but I don't know who it might be. Whipping boy, the only track from the main album I haven't mentioned, is not quite as good as the other tracks here but it's OK. I have the original version of the CD without the bonus tracks but this album is worth it without them. If (as I am led to believe) the bonus tracks are not up to the standard of the main album, you can always stop the music when you reach those tracks.
Following the success of this album, Elton released more fine albums that yielded more big hits prior to another lean spell, but if you want to explore Elton's eighties music, this is the album to begin with – with or without those bonus tracks.
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