The Roots and Elvis Costello: Wise Up Ghost

18 Nov

Elvis Costello and The Roots have both always been more smart than successful and teaming up does nothing to change that. It does result in a very good album though, although an unabashedly smart one and unapologetically demanding one.

The first thing to note of this album is the grooves. The Roots have done a fine job laying down a soundscape and Costello’s production can be felt everywhere. His voice also, rather surprisingly, blends excellently into the music. As expected of a Costello album, the lyrics are layered and intelligent, much more so than the R&B and funk that this album draws from. The result is an album that greatly rewards multiple close listens, but never makes doing so a chore. I highly recommend it.

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