Elvis Presley – Back In Memphis (1969/2019)
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/96 kHz | Time – 32:06 minutes | 686 MB | Genre: Rock
Studio Master, Official Digital Download – Source: Qobuz | Front Cover | © RCA Victor – Legacy
Originally the second LP of the two-LP 1969 opus “From Memphis To Vegas/From Vegas To Memphis”, “Back In Memphis”, released on its own in November 1970, is the second part of Elvis’ hugely successful sojourn to Chips Moman’s American Studios that also yielded the classic “From Elvis In Memphis” during the summer of 1969.
The product of the same early 1969 Memphis sessions under producer Chips Moman that yielded the classic From Elvis in Memphis LP in 1969, Back in Memphis is usually thought of as a distinctly lesser album, but that’s far too simplistic and harsh a judgement. For starters, any album that contains Elvis’ rendition of Percy Mayfield’s “Stranger in My Home Town” isn’t going to be seriously “lesser” than too many albums on the planet – that’s a given. Indeed, any other singer who released an LP comprised of ten songs as good as those found here could have sat back and congratulated himself on a job magnificently done. “This Is the Story,” “Inherit the Wind,” “A Little Bit of Green,” and “And the Grass Won’t Pay No Mind” are all superb Presley vocal showcases, presenting him at his most powerful and expressive up to that point, with the last among the most beautiful album tracks that the King ever cut. His rendition of Mort Shuman’s “You’ll Think of Me” is a soaring, passionate record, Elvis’ voice lofted over a soul chorus and a brass- and dobro-dominated accompaniment, all carrying one of the prettiest melodies that he ever sang. And the finale, “Without Love,” is another Presley homage to Clyde McPhatter, one of the first soul singers to inspire him, whose work Elvis first embraced officially on the finale of his very first long-player (ending Elvis Presley with his rendition of McPhatter’s hit “Money Honey” back in 1956). Oh, there’s nothing here of the extraordinary quality of “In the Ghetto,” “Any Day Now,” or “Long Black Limousine” – though “And the Grass Won’t Pay No Mind” and “Stranger in My Hometown” come very close – but how often does (or can) one get three records like that coming out of one place and one set of sessions?
01 – Inherit the Wind
02 – This Is the Story
03 – Stranger In My Own Home Town
04 – A Little Bit of Green
05 – And the Grass Won’t Pay No Mind
06 – Do You Know Who I Am
07 – From a Jack to a King
08 – The Fair’s Moving On
09 – You’ll Think of Me
10 – Without Love (There Is Nothing)