ARTIST: Elvis Costello
TITLE: This Year’s Model
YEAR RELEASED: 1978
CHART ACTION: #30 US, #4 UK
SINGLES: (I Don’t Want to Go to) Chelsea (#16 UK), Pump It Up (#24 UK), Radio Radio (#29 UK)
OTHER SONGS YOU MAY KNOW: This Year’s Girl, The Beat
LINEUP: Elvis Costello, Steve Nieve, Bruce Thomas, Pete Thomas
WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT: The Attractions back Costello on record for the first time and the result is one of THOSE albums that you play over and over again.
SOME WORDS, PHRASES AND CLAUSES ABOUT THIS RECORD: Costello’s songs needed a solid, sympathetic and synergetic backing group. The Attractions fit that to a “T” and then some. Nieve’s keyboards and Bruce Thomas’ bass add a great amount of color to each song. Pete Thomas’s solid drumming gives Nieve and Bruce Thomas space to explore the songs. They can be furious and flame throwing, and also gentle to fit Costello’s ballads.
The bass playing of Bruce Thomas is brilliant. He creates his own counter-melodies without interfering with the songs and interplays quite well with the guitar of Costello and keyboards of Nieve.
Costello’s songs on this album are all classics. There’s no weak link, and more importantly, you never get tired of them. They sound just as strong and powerful on the 1,000th play as the first.
NOTES & MINUTIAE: Thanks to the US record company, we originally didn’t get Chelsea or Night Rally on the original release over here. We did get Radio, Radio. When this record was released on CD everyone got all three songs – so it became a great 13 song album ending with Radio, Radio.
IS THERE A DELUXE VERSION: Every time Costello’s stuff is released, the b-sides and demos are attached to the record. I’ve decided that I’ll review those with Taking Liberties, if they show up there.
GRADE: A+: I can play this record over and over again on the same day. I don’t say that with many albums. I always discover something to focus on.