That Fatal Mailing List #102
There's another element of typical Elvis wordplay to that King Horse lyric -- "dear" in the UK is also another word for expensive.
Very well reasoned and written. Such an incredible album! Those early years of EC were so god damn perfect.
"Costello’s combination of tribute and adaptation on Get Happy!! serves to broaden his emotional pallette. " Pretty much says it all right there. Another great piece, and a reminder that it's been too long since I've "gotten happy" so thanks for that. And, yes, the Attractions' versatility back then was unmatched IMO.
I don’t know if I’d agree that “it’s easy to believe” this album wasn’t connected to the incident. Not to placate critics? Sure. But not in mind for EC himself? Hmmm.
You have the new influences throughout the collection of songs as you mention, and then you have “Riot Act” as the capstone and final word on the matter to end the whole thing. I loathe the phrase “trust the art, not the artist,” but cliches come from somewhere don’t they?
And ultimately, 40+ years out from it all and as someone who wasn’t himself born at the time of its release, I don’t particularly care about the drama preceding and surrounding it. It’s such a strong effort and stands up on its own even without knowing that (potential) background, as indeed I wouldn’t have known about it before the first time I listened. But it does add an extra layer to the whole thing.
May play along - get happy might be in my top 5
GH!! has a longtime hold on position #1 on my ever-changing ranking list. And if there is one moment I'll remember till my dying day (along with Couldn't Call it Unexpected, natch!), it's "That it means much more than it (beat) might (Smash chord)" Also, Bruce's *literally* galloping bassline in a song with "Horse" in the title is such a boss move.