This came out in 2002 – or at least that’s when I got it. Here’s what I said about it back then (with some minor editing):
“The King is gone but he’s not forgotten,” Neil Young wrote back in 1979. It’s still just as true today.
On Aug. 16, 1977, Elvis Presley left the building for good — or so they would have us believe. Either way, his legend still looms large. Maybe not as large as the man himself got to be toward the end there, but large enough to keep his memory alive. Of course, the people who recall Elvis most with the most love would have be those at his longtime record label RCA. Which is likely why, over the past several months, they’ve been quietly putting classic Elvis titles back into circulation. If you’re thinking about spending some quality time with The King, pick up one of these at your nearest CD store. And if the guy who sells it to you has mutton-chop sideburns and smells of peanut butter and bananas, wish him a happy anniversary from us, would ya?
Elvis is Back!
First Released: 1960.
The Lowdown: That’s back as in back from his two-year stint in the Army. Critics said it would kill his career. This worldly, sophisticated return shows that in some ways, it may have only made him stronger. Of course, almost anybody would sound pretty good backed by a band that includes old cronies like guitarist Scotty Moore and drummer D.J. Fontana, along with The Jordanaires and the yakety sax of Boots Randolph.
Essential Hits: Stuck on You, Fever, Such a Night, Reconsider Baby, Are You Lonesome Tonight?, It’s Now or Never.
Buried Treasures: They aren’t that rare, but a few of these tracks are among the coolest non-hits Elvis ever recorded: The torchy A Mess of Blues, the smoudering It Feels So Right and the incredible rockabilly firecracker Dirty, Dirty Feeling, whose title alone is worth the price of this CD.
The Last Word: For a guy as overplayed as Elvis, this disc has enough obscure cuts to warrant a listen.