ELVIS AT FULL BLAST! (Fort Baxter - 2098) (Released 1995)
1. Review by Mark Littlejohn
|Las Vegas, August 11 1972 (M.S.)
Also Sprach Zarathustra
See See Rider
I Got A Woman
Until It's Time For You To Go
You've Lost That Loving Feeling
Polk Salad Annie
What Now My Love
All Shook Up
Teddy Bear/Don't Be Cruel
Blue Suede Shoes
Little Sister/Get Back
A Big Hunk O'Love
Can't Help Falling In Love
Content: 5 Sound: 4- Artwork: 2+
|1. Review by Mark Littlejohn
Here we have another outstanding CD from the Ft. Baxter people featuring the midnight show from August 11, 1972. If you don't have this CD in your collection, kick yourself in the butt. Although it did not come in a jewel box, the CD cover features some nice photos and technical notes apologizing for minor sound fluctuations during 'I Got A Woman' and a editing flaw during 'Suspicious Minds' that I couldn't find.
The CD starts off with the by now usual 'Also Sprach Zarathustra (Theme from 2001: A Space Oddessy)' and then rumbles into an excellent triple shot of 'See See Rider', 'I Got A Woman' and 'Proud Mary.' The relatively new ballad of 'Until It's Time For You To Go' is next, but Elvis is caught choking on too large a sip of water and the intro is extended while he re-groups. 'You've Lost That Loving Feeling' follows and this is a superb version. The instrumental is powerful and Elvis' vocal is full of emotion.
'Polk Salad Annie' has along intro as some ladies sitting next to the stage grab Elvis' attention and then the song is further extended as James Burton plays a great solo. 'What Now, My Love' is delayed as a female fan lets Elvis know she has something for him, causing him to crack "I'm not in the mood!" Once he gets going, the song is powerfully done. This is proof positive that when Elvis was feeling supremely confident, there was no better performer on the planet. Who else could blend some funky southern rock with a big ballad and do justice to both.
A smoldering 'Fever' kicks off an extended medley of hits featuring: 'Love Me', 'All Shook Up', 'Teddy Bear/Don't Be Cruel', 'Heartbreak Hotel', 'Blue Suede Shoes', 'Little Sister/Get Back' and 'Hound Dog.' All are performed with a little extra snap. After this Elvis is looking for something different and flat out rejects 'Burning Love', saying ...lets do something like 'It's Over", which is well done.
I have never understood why he didn't like 'Burning Love', it's such a great song with a Creedence Clearwater Revival feel, although he would start to perform it on a regular basis in 1975. Combine it with 'Promised Land' and you have two songs of Elvis' that will compete with anything else from this decade. A spectacular version of 'Suspicious Minds' is next featuring a lot of lead guitar from James Burton. This is a killer and if you look at the 8mm home movies from this engagement, you can see he was really into the karate fight ending. A brief introduction of musicians is next and Elvis is right back in gear.
'My Way' is the third new song for this season and is given a strong presentation here. 'A Big Hunk O'Love' demonstrates that Elvis is not done rocking yet, highlighting both Glenn Hardin and James Burton on the solo's. And now we've come to the awesome finale of 'An American Trilogy'. This song was one of the most moving elements of Elvis' concerts, drawing more standing ovations than anything else he would ever perform. When I saw him in Tampa in 1975, the ovation was deafening! Elvis would wind up a lot of shows at this engagement with big ballads and this was fine because he offered plenty of rock during the heart of the shows. Except; of course, for the night Tom Jones was in the audience. He blistered the stage with one rock song after another. 'Can't Help Falling In Love' brings the curtain down on this fantastic show.
This is one of my favorite shows to listen to (in it's entirety). The CD has been out of print for quite a while, but if you can find a copy somebody is dumb enough to let go of, BUY IT!!
Sound Rating ****1/2
Show Rating *****
© Mark Littlejohn, USA (June 20, 2000)
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