Elvis Presley - Elvis Presley - Review
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critics' view

Let’s go cat” encourages Elvis…

… Scotty Moore on guitar rises to the challenge on the exciting album opener…

… “aw, walk the dog” howls Presley in appreciation!

Tuned right in to the mood of the day, Elvis was talking the talk and walking the walk. The core group of Elvis, Scotty, Bill Black (bass) and D. J. Fontana (drums) may not have had the dynamism of Little Richard’s Specialty crew but they were rhythmic, had a great natural chemistry, and, in Elvis, there was a front man who had an electrifying magnetism rarely seen on the world stage. As with many albums of the period, the assembly of the material is a bit hodgepodge, although in Elvis case it can at least partly be explained by his recent switch from Sun Records to RCA. The rights to the Sun Studio tapes had transferred to RCA with the sale of his contract, so five previously unreleased Sun songs, “I Love You Because”, “Just Because”, “Tryin' to Get to You”, “I'll Never Let You Go (Little Darlin')”, and “Blue Moon” were added to seven new RCA sessions tracks to bring the runtime up to an acceptable length. For my money, there’s not a bad track on the album, although “Blue Suede Shoes” and the aforementioned “Trying To Get To You” are out in a class of their own. Elvis’ acrobatic vocal on the latter is truly a wondrous thing. “Blue Moon” is next best of the Sun oldies as Elvis delivers a Rock n Roll Ballad in a way that had never done before – tender and gentle but with a syncopated rhythm from Scotty’s imaginative high neck and Bill’s pinkie-plucked bass.

These were cool cats, and this was a brilliant debut, rightfully becoming the first rock and roll album ever to make it to the top of the Billboard Pop Charts.

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