15 maj 2012, 13:12

Elvis Costello - Manchester Apollo.

UNEMPLOYMENT,a recession and an unpopular Tory government. Not much has changed since Elvis Costello's hey day in the late 1970s and early 80s.
Yet it was a different Elvis who graced the stage at the Apollo to the singer known for his surly demeanour.
These days Elvis embraces his extensive back catalogue with a fun,unique and distinctly Hollywood approach to the show.Hardly surprising perhaps,given his new role as US chat show host.
For this tour he has cast himself as a 1950s gameshow host with the stage adorned with a huge wheel,containing titles from dozens of his hits. One by one Costello would bring delighted members of the audience up to the stage to spin the wheel which would choose the next song.
"These people's enjoyment of the next five minutes depends on you",he told the first lucky contestant Helen whose choice of Everyday I Write The Book did not disappoint.
The format meant Elvis and his band had to be extremely versatile.But supported by original members of The Attractions,keyboardist Steve Nieve and drummer Pete Thomas,they proved they know their songs well and rose to the challenge.They even deviated from the wheel playing Deep,Dark Truthful Mirror after a special request from the next wheel 'contestant' Jane.
As he reeled off songs which left each and every fan happy.From Accidents Will Happen to I Don't Wanna Go To Chelsea,they were all there. And that was before the hit-laden finale.
For the middle section of the show,the band departed the stage and allowed Elvis's powerful voice to get the focus and attention it deserves. After a selection of 1930s numbers including one on the ukuele,and classic ballads like She,Elvis seized the chance to make a few,almost nostalgic,political statements.
"This is a democratic show,which is more than can be said of the country,"he said before slamming Rebekah Brooks,Rupert Murdoch and The Sun.He also gave an outing to Tramp the Dirt Down,an acoustic number in which he fantasises about stamping on the grace of Margaret Thatcher,which received a rapturous applause.
The crowd were soon back on their feet as Elvis wrapped up the show with a bang. On stage for nearly three hours,his energy was incredible and he hardly pauses for breath as he rattled another stream of hits including Oliver's Army.



  • spotpatty

    How much were tickets? what was the price range? Could you smoke cigarettes at the show? could you bring your own beer to the show? Was the audience smoking pot? If you did would you get arrested? Did you know that in the 80's he referred to Ray Charles as a "blind nigger"? Did you know that Ted Nugent punched him in the face for calling Ray Charles that? How do you compare young Elvis Costello with old Elvis Costello? Did you want to smash his Ukulele?

    15 maj 2012, 19:00
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