The Czech Elvis Presley fan club released two new CD’s. The start of the new year could not have been better than with two shows from one of Elvis peaks, August 1970. An engagement we know from his movie “Elvis: That’s The Way It Is”.
This CD is the second part of two re-releases of audience recordings from August 20 1970, made by Rick Rennie. Is this CD’s an improvement over the previous release (Midnight Inspiration) and is the midnight show a copy of the dinner show earlier that day?
The design is done by Geert Hof again, and he outdid himself this time. The design of the two CD’s make a complete package. You must like some bright colors, but so far these are the flashiest covers to come out of the Czech Republic.
The liner notes are a review of the show and the additional bonus tracks on this CD. Reading the additional information from Rick Rennie on his editing of the show we would have liked to hear it completely. Elvis being “booed” by his audience is a rarity.
The second CD of this 2 CD set (“A Dinner Bell In Vegas” featuring the dinner show) contains a remastered audience recording too. Fortunately above average, as we know most of Rick Rennie’s recordings are.
Then the concert itself. The excerpt of “Ave Maria” which is part of the “I Got A Woman – Amen” medley is very short. Part of this CD could be “Having Fun On Stage With Elvis” who introduces a laughing box to the audience and he is very talkative. All through the show Elvis sounds to be “giggling” and laughing easily. According to Rick who was present he appeared to be “more up” for this show (what ever that may mean).
“I’ve Lost You” gets a better treatment then a few hours earlier. New on the list is Neil Diamond’s “Sweet Caroline”. Back to his (more or less) 'own' songs, “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin'” and “Polk Salad Annie” both sound strong, even when Elvis seems to have fallen during the spoken part introduction of the last song. Rick edited out the “booing” of the audience, when Elvis took about twenty minutes making the rounds during “Love Me Tender”.
A nice treat on this CD is Elvis’ version of the Sweets signature song “Sweet Inspiration” during the introduction. He simply starts singing and then the band and Sweets join in. Having more fun he introduces James Burton as the writer of his signature song “Johnny B Goode” (Chuck Berry).
Since it is an audience recording, you hear the audience talking. Having never seen Elvis on stage it is hard to believe someone asking where the closest men’s room is … don’t think we’d ever leave the room. But that is looking back (in envy).
Elvis flashes through the standards, extending the usual intro longer then the actual performance of “Hound Dog”. After a few lines of “More” he lays down a good version of Paul Simon’s “Bridge over Troubled Water”, although he needs a false start. These are the performances we’d go to an Elvis concert for.
Up next is “Suspicious Minds”. With girls on both sites of the stage probably wanting something funny Elvis start laughing and delivers a version we can call a laughing version of “Suspicious Minds” with the same laughter we know from the famous laughing version of “Are You Lonesome Tonight”. Coincidence or not, he closes the show immediately with the closing theme “Can’t Help Falling In Love”.
The CD ends with several songs from the August 19th show, of which “I’ve Lost You” is the only unreleased song on this CD. The sound is different from the main show on this release. “You Don’t Have To Say You Love Me” is a good addition since it is a good version and not part of the main concert. “Polk Salad Annie” sounds different, more instrumental and Elvis used a lower voice (impersonation a character he saw in a western and trying some things he learned in the army).
During the last song the CD broke down, hopefully this is a fault in our copy only.
The show is an interesting one, and thanks to the remastering a very decent audience recording to listen to. Fortunately this show is not a straight copy of the dinner-show and due to the more “up” Elvis an interesting show to listen to, partly because of his version of the Sweet Inspirations theme song.