Personnel: Elvis Costello (vocals, acoustic & electric guitars, mandolin); James Burton (acoustic & electric guitars, dobro); T-Bone Wolk (electric guitar, accordion, keyboards, electric bass); T-Bone Burnett (electric guitar); Jo-El Sonnier (French accordion); Mitchell Froom (piano, harpsichord, organ, Hammond organ); Tom Canning (piano); Michael Blair (marimba); Jerry Scheff (acoustic & electric basses); Ray Brown (acoustic bass); Earl Palmer, Ron Tutt, Jim Keltner, Mickey Curry (drums); David Hidalgo (background vocals).
The Attractions: Steve Nieve (piano, Hammond organ); Bruce Thomas (electric bass); Pete Thomas (drums).
Producers: T-Bone Burnett, Elvis Costello, Larry Hirsch, The Coward Brothers.
Recorded at Ocean Way, Sunset Sound Studio and The Sound Factory, Los Angeles, California in 1985. Originally released on Columbia (40173). Includes liner notes by Declan Patrick Aloysius "Elvis Costello" MacManus.
On KING OF AMERICA, the ever-restless Costello reinvented himself yet again, using his Christian name (Declan MacManus) in the credits, and employing the other Elvis' old backing band (as well as Ray Brown and Earl Palmer) for his most reflective, mature-sounding album thus far. The overall sound here is closer to Costello's folk-rock roots (The Band, the Grateful Dead) than he'd ever dared come before, and the songs trade elliptical wordplay for considered emotional statements.Though the Attractions appear only on "Suit of Lights," their influence is felt on the album's poppiest tune "Lovable." Elsewhere, Costello offers poignant country ballads ("Indoor FIreworks," also expertly covered by Nick Lowe), jazz/blues torch songs ("Poisoned Rose") and even a bit of '60s Britbeat (an effective recasting of "Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood"). In short, KING OF AMERICA contains some of Costello's finest, most understated work.
- RSD Release Date: n/a
- Format: Vinyl
- Genre: Rock
- Genre: Pop
- Released: 11/06/2015