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Country Darkness Vol. 2 (Vinyl + Slip Case for All Volumes) **SOLD OUT**
Released June 2020 – ‘Country Darkness Vol. 2’
The EP contains re-interpretations of 4 more Elvis Costello songs in collaboration with Steve Nieve.
Like Vol 1, ‘Country Darkness Vol. 2’ was produced by Colin Elliot and MWK, and features Colin Elliot, Shez Sheridan and Dean Beresford.
The vinyl also comes with a free download code, and all copies ordered here will be signed and personalised as requested.
Includes a free bonus item – a beautifully designed, heavy card slip-case to store ALL THREE VOLUMES
Country Darkness Vol. 2: The Songs:
Either Side Of The Same Town:
Without question one of our favourite Elvis songs, of any style. I think Elvis must have been listening to a lot of Dan Penn when he wrote this. It is a song mined from the same seam as The Dark End Of The Street, originally a hit for James Carr. One of my favourite songs sung by one the greatest songwriters. In 2006 Lou was on tour with The Brodsky Quartet as their guest vocalist and they performed a version of this song, arranged for quartet and voice by Brodsky viola player Paul Cassidy, based on the original demo Elvis had given to Paul. Quite a lot different from how it ended up on The Delivery Man album, and in turn, very different from our version here.
I Lost You:
This song comes from the 2010 album, National Ransom, and is co-written with Jim Lauderdale, who was also part of the touring ensemble Elvis put together at that time. Lou and I shared a festival bill with Jim at the River Town Festival in Bristol in 2017 and our paths have crossed a few times, most recently at a festival in Lafayette, Louisiana. Jim is one of the sweetest, and funniest guys and a master of the high harmony. A very fine songwriter too. The original of this opens with a guitar riff which then reoccurs later. We replaced that with Steve’s arpeggiated piano motif. Although written originally for one voice, the song works particularly well as a conversational duet.
A song that just had to be done for this project. One of EC’s most authentic honky-tonkers, like Stranger in the House, it is a classic country song, although still with a few songwriting idiosyncrasies that are totally Costello (as opposed to the simplicity of say Harlan Howard or Merle Haggard). Steve had played on the original so we wanted to find a different approach, as we have tried with all these songs, so for this we went with the Marty Robbins treatment. Hats off to Piero Tucci for some stunning accordion playing, and also the beautiful Spanish guitar styling of Shez Sheridan
Too Soon To Know:
This song turned out much more moody and atmospheric than any of us thought. In 2016 Darlene Love recorded this song, duetting with will Bill Medley, approaching it in that true 60s soul style she is famous for. I had initially thought we may also go in that direction but once Steve had set the tone with his spooky keys, and sombre feel, the song went somewhere else altogether, and I would argue all the better for it. We have taken a more understated vocal approach to try and set it apart from previous versions. Of any of the songs we have cut so far, this track personifies the phrase Country Darkness.
Some projects exude class before you even hear a single note. This is one of them
They make the songs feel like they’ve always been duets
Bernard Zuel, Sydney Morning Herald
Costello’s songs lend themselves perfectly to the stylings of our greatest duo
Country Music People ****4/5
They develop Costello’s original work taking it to new places. Their vocal delivery takes ownership of these songs
The duo sing magnificently. The vocal exchanges here are quite brilliant
Blabber ’n’ Smoke
Costello’s songs, King and Dalgleish’s voices, Nieve’s keys… it’s a perfect fit