Graphic designer Barney Bubbles runs amok on this ‘solo’ Lp by Elvis Costello’s Attractions. Would that such an exceptionally weak ‘new wave’ record merited our Colin’s over-the-top efforts. Simply put, it’s as poorly sung and written an album as anyone with as much talent as the Attraction possess that you’re likely to hear–truly, the band’s abilities lie elsewhere. An overload of visual japes and absurdity abound.Kookiness and kitsch in ample portions.Steve Nieve assembles a phalanx of keyboards, enough to gag Rick Wakeman, for this instrumental faux soundtrack ep included with the (already generously packed 16 track) album. Fans of EC’s ‘Shot With His Own Gun’ et al. will recognise Nieve’s opulent Romantic style; he never met a glissando he didn’t like. Note that Bubbles appropriates the pianist’s image from the near-contemporary Get Happy!!!
Without vocals to distract, the ep is the slightly better bet.
But for fans of both Bubbles’ work and of paying £1 for their records in Folkestone, this package will do nicely.