45 of 47 people found the following review helpful
on July 12, 2000
If you have ever wondered about the power of Elvis Presley live,this Wonderful new 3 CD Set will enlighten you.
For the first time ever-we have a complete 1970 Elvis Concert- and it really is a must have for all Fans and non fans alike.
Disc 1 contains the original TTWII album plus additional tracks-all in superior sound.
Disc 2 contains a complete 1970 concert again in fabulous sound quality. Elvis really gives a fantastic show full of ultra high energy performances,backed by the famous TCB band. What a show!
Disc 3 contains Elvis and the TCB band in rehearsal,very interesting! You also get some more Live performances of unreleased songs.
All in all this is the best ever Elvis release by BMG,the performances are top notch as is the sound quality,contains over 40 Unreleased tracks!
23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
on December 14, 2000
This is the very best compilation from RCA/BMG ever! I am a serious Elvis collector with over 60 live shows from 1969 to 1976, and I can honestly say this is the cream of the crop. Elvis was the #1 concert attraction in the US from 1969 to 1976, and that title was earned by performances like those in this set.
I bought the jewel box version (I didn't like the looks of the digipak) and while some complain about the packaging, what counts is on the inside. We get the original albumn with bonus tracks on CD-1; the complete midnight show of Aug. 12, 1970 on CD-2; and additional live and rehearsal takes on CD-3. Highlights include the following: (CD-1) I Just Can't Help Believing, Just Pretend, Stranger In The Crowd,& Something. (CD-2) A killer opening of That's All Right & Mystery Train/Tiger Man, Just Pretend, Words, You've Lost That Loving Feeling, Polk Salad Annie, Little Sister/Getback & Love Me (both feature Elvis on electric guitar), Bridge Over Troubled Water, and Suspicious Minds. (CD-3) Can't Stop Loving You, You Don't Have To Say You Love Me, Stranger In The Crowd, Make The World Go Away, Don't Cry Daddy/In The Ghetto, and Johnny B. Goode.
Many people have said that these songs are just the sames ones over and over, so no big deal. While some of the songs have appeared in the Elvis In Person or On Stage albumns, the sound quality is not the same, nor are the performances. Elvis' voice is way up front in the mix on this set and the backing vocals and instruments are superb. Of the 60 shows I have (50 of them are soundboard recordings) this is by far my favorite! In fact I made my own 80 minute CD-R of the best live tracks and have played it on a regular basis since this set came out in July. This set will go a long way towards educating music fans about Elvis in the 70's. Even as late as 1975 Elvis was still giving outstanding concerts across America, and I was fortunate enough to see him in Tampa, FL in April of that year.
If you are not an Elvis fan but would like to try some of his music, buy the Artist of the Cenutry collection and this Special Edition of That's The Way It Is. The rest of us who are fans will happily add this jewel to our collections. FYI: FTD (a division of BMG) is releasing the Aug. 10, 1970 opening night show this month, and hopefully BMG will include a complete show in the Las Vegas box set next year.
21 of 21 people found the following review helpful
RCA has truly delivered the goods with this stunning three-CD edition of Elvis Presley's "That's the Way It Is." Along with the original album, the box set includes a complete and previously unreleased concert from August 1970 that captures Elvis at his peak - a revelatory performance that justifies the purchase. More previously unissued material can be found on Disc Three, which showcases a fascinating rehearsal with Elvis and his musicians as they run through everything from "Cottonfields" to the "Peter Gunn Theme." For Presley fans and popular-music historians, the revamped "That's the Way It Is" emerges as a landmark (and long overdue) addition to the Elvis discography.
16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
on February 11, 2007
This is a three CD collection that was released in conjunction with a DVD that was also called Elvis - That's the Way It Is (Special Edition). Elvis - That's The Way It Is was a documentary film about Elvis Presley's August 1970 concert series in Las Vegas. There was also a corresponding album released around the same time the movie came out. Which brings us this CD collection, released for the 30th Anniversary of Elvis - That's The Way It Is.
Disc One is subtitled "Special Edition". It features the original That's the Way It Is album, plus seven bonus tracks. The original album only featured four actual live tracks from August 1970, with the rest of the album being studio recordings from June 1970, most of which were performed live in the movie. Elvis was at the top of his game at the time, and this was a great album. The bonus tracks are six more studio recordings from 1970, plus a live version of the Beatles' "Something".
Disc Two is subtitled "The Concert". It is the complete midnight show from August 12, 1970. This show is described in the liner notes as "probably the best live concert ever recorded by Elvis Presley". I'm not sure if that's true, because all of Elvis' concerts from around this time were great. But this is certainly one of the best, if not THE best.
Disc Three is subtitled "The Rehearsal". The first nine songs are additional live songs from August 1970 which were not on either Disc One or Disc Two. Everything else on the CD is from rehearsals for this concert series. Most of the rehearsals are just Elvis and the band, without the orchestra or the background singers. Since these are just rehearsals, some of them are a bit sloppy. Elvis doesn't always remember the words, and sometimes substitutes "naughty" words for the lyrics. I should also mention that the recording quality of some of the songs isn't that good, since they were never intended to be released. But it's still fun to hear Elvis working out arrangements, jamming and just having fun.
Taken together, these three CDs are a real treat for Elvis fans.
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on July 14, 2004
Many Elvis Presley boxed sets have been released over the years, and 2000 "That's The Way It Is" is one of the best in the bunch. Released to commemorate the thirtieth annivesary of his 1970 concert movie, "That's The Way It Is", it features three discs of timeless music that any Presley fan would love to get their hands on.
Disc 1 features the original 12 songs featured on the original studio soundtrack. Songs like "Twenty Days And Twenty Nights", "How The Web Was Woven", "Just Pretend", "Stranger In The Crowd" and "The Next Step Is Love" are among Elvis' best ever works. Also included are dynamic live versions of blistering originals "Patch It Up", "I've Lost You" and his dynamic cover versions of "You've Lost That Loving Feeling", "I Just Can't Help Believin'" and "Bridge Over Troubled Water", as well as his excellent hit cover of Dusty Springfield's "You Don't Have To Say You Love Me" (Billboard number 11).
Added to the original soundtrack are 7 bonus songs, most of them from 1971's "Love Letters From Elvis". These include "Love Letters" (this version is better han the 1966 top twenty hit version), "When I'm Over You" (great intro), and covers of Tony Bennett's "Rags To Riches" and The Beatles' "Something". These are just further proof that Elvis could make good music out of just about anything.
Disc 2 features his complete August 12, 1970, concert. Possibly the best concert in his entire performing career. Elvis performs each song with incredible gusto, breathing new life into oldies "Hound Dog", "Blue Suede Shoes", "One Night", "Heartbreak Hotel", "All Shook Up" and "Love Me", as well as covers like Neil Diamond's "Sweet Caroline" and The Bee Gees' "Words". Elvis' impeccable sense of humor is intact, as evident by his performance of "Are You Lonesome Tonight".
Disc 3 is the best disc. The first 9 songs are more live performances. These include wondeful versions of "I Got A Woman", "I Can't Stop Loving You", "Twenty Days And Twenty Nights" and "You Don't Have To Say You Love Me". Elvis' voice is great on this disc, as evident on "Don't Cry Daddy" and "In The Ghetto".
Tracks 10 - 25 are the real reason I bought this disc. These tracks are from rehearsals for the concerts. These recording represents a more relaxed Elvis. He continuously jokes around here, and dusts off older numbers like "That's All Right", "Such A Night", "It's Now Or Never" and "(Now And Then There's) A Fool Such As I". The last 3 tracks are the best. "Santa Clause Is Back In Town" revived and done as a smooth blues. "Farther Along" is a fun gospel number, and the closing "Oh Happy Day" is a joyful singalong.
This album shows Elvis in his latter - day prime. It also comes with a beautiful 24 - page boxed set featuring a wonderful essay, lovely pictures, and track information. Needed for any Elvis fans.
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on July 11, 2000
BMG has finally hit the nail on the head! Of the numerous reissues of Elvis' material in the past several years, this is the most valuable.
After the successes of Elvis' 1968 comback special and 1969 return to live performing, it was inevitable that something even bigger was going to happen. That something was the stunning live documentary film "Elvis: That's the Way it Is". A soundtrack album to the film was released in tandem with the film and for a long time stood as on of the highlights of Elvis' '70s career. Cut to thirty years later...
BMG has now released a "special edition" of _That's the Way it Is_. Instead of merely reissuing the original album with five or six bonus tracks, they have supplemented the original album with TWO DISCS of top notch unreleased performances.
The first twelve tracks on disc one are the original album remastered. Here, we have a stunning mixture of 1970 Nashville studio recordings and live Las Vegas recordings. Studio highlights include the pastoral "Mary in the Morning", "The Next Step is Love", the joyous "Stranger in the Crowd" and the glorious recording of Simon and Garfunkle's "Bridge Over Troubled Water". The live highlights are "I Just Can't Help Believin'" and an incredible rendition of "You've Lost That Lovin' Feeling".
Disc One is rounded out by seven additional performances which later turned up on _Love Letters from Elvis_ (1971) and _Elvis Now_ (1972). I was somewhat disappointed that they didn't include the studio versions of "I've Lost You" or "Patch it Up" but I guess I'll live...
Disc Two is the complete midnight performance from August 12, 1970. Finally, we have a complete document of one of Elvis' legendary 1970 concerts and it was worth the wait! This is now the best Elvis live album on the market. In addition to energetic and playful performances of "Hound Dog", "Heartbreak Hotel", and "I Was the One" (Elvis hadn't yet completely tired of performing these songs), we are treated to stunning renditions of "Walk a Mile in My Shoes", the Bee Gees' classic "Words", the swamp funk of "Polk Salad Annie" and thoroughly enjoyable medleys of "Mystery Train/Tiger Man" and "Little Sister/Get Back". This incredible performance was quite possibly never equalled before or after.
Disc Three starts off with nine additional concert performances from the summer of 1970. The undisputed highlight is the medley of "Don't Cry Daddy" and "In the Ghetto". On a humorous note, Elvis introduces "Twenty Days and Twenty Nights" by telling the audience that he doesn't really like the song, but will sing it because it's on the program.
The set closes with a series of rehearsals from summer, 1970, some of which were included in the "That's the Way it Is" film". Here, Elvis is extremely relaxed while running through some of his hits and more recent tracks with his band (minus orchestra and backup singers). Highlights include "It's Now or Never", "Such a Night", "Little Sister/Get Back", "Johnny B. Goode", and a slow bluesy take on "Santa Claus is Back in Town". On an interesting note, Elvis' arrangement of Leadbelly's classic "Cottonfields" sounds curiously similar to the Beach Boys recording of the same song the previous year.
Overall, this (along with the excellent _Elvis Country_ album) is the definitive document of Elvis in 1970. An essential purchase for any serious music fan.
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on October 13, 2000
I,ve been an elvis fan many years ans this is the best elvis album i,ve bought.Its a must for any elvis fan young or old.Its 3 very good cds for a very good price.Cd 1 contains the original album with 7 new songs my favourite song is "patch it up" a realy fast and highly entertaing song of course theres two other songs you should check out "mary in the morning" "just pretend".Cd 2 is the concert that contains a lot of good elvis tracks song such as "heartbreak hotel,suspious minds,the goes my every thing,bridge over troubled water,mystery train/tiger man"my fav 2 tracks are suspious minds,polk salad annie.And finaly cd 3 is the rehersal cd with 9 live tracks includeing "dont cry daddy,in the getto,make the world go away" so to all elvis fans this is a must.
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on July 23, 2004
This album is by far the greatest Rock n' Roll live album ever recorded. After the nervous Sun Sessions, after the Army, after the dozens of mediocre flicks, and after the '68 Special - Elvis took control of Rock N' Roll. The power of his performance on this special edition 3 disc set will never be matched. He was at the top of his game, which speaks volumes for the "KING OF ROCK N' ROLL". Additionally, the TCB Band, including Ronnie Tutt, Glenn Hardin, Jerry Schiff, and James Burton is a collection of the best musicians in America. All have gone on to play for notable acts such as the Grateful Dead! Their musicianship on this albulm is only matched by the powerful performances of Elvis. He was at his peak during this period. If you want to hear Rock N' Roll, and want to hear it's King at his peak this is a must have session. I have both the 3CD set and the 5 LP set. Elvis strived for this sound the rest of his career, but unfortunately could never match the precision and vitality of this album. And that the way it is!
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
The side of Elvis as revealed in his Las Vegas concerts is an important one. In these shows, he proved himself to be the supreme perfectionist, that is the perfectionist who presents himself as casual and off-the-cuff. He has to be one of the very best performers in relating to his audience, and this set shows this.
There are three CDs here: The original "That's The Way It Is" with additional tracks, a complete concert, and the 3rd containing 9 live performances and a number of rehearsals.
Of course, many of Elvis' major hits are performed here, but there are many rarer songs too as well as unique renditions of contemporary songs made famous by others, such as George Harrison's "Something", B. J. Thomas' "I Just Can't Help Believin'", Simon & Garfunkel's "Bridge Over Troubled Water", and the Righteous Brothers' "You've Lost That Loving Feeling". And these weren't hap-hazard selections. These were the show-stopping type numbers that Elvis realized intuitively would go over with the Las Vegas crowds.
This is one magnificent set to have in your collection, if you in any way appreciate Elvis.
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on July 20, 2000
The stream of special-interest-Elvis continues and this one is a knockout, objectively and subjectively speaking: there are plenty of old and "new" tracks for ALL listeners to appreciate, and the original cuts from the THAT'S THE WAY IT IS soundtrack make me wonder why I've basically ignored them over the years: "Just Pretend", "Twenty Days...", "Stranger In The Crowd", and the incredible "Mary In The Morning" are remarkable ballads, beautifully written and sung. Disc #2 is a complete midnight show recorded during the "Standing Room Only" [original movie title] filming. Not as "finished" as the later complete concert (ELVIS AS RECORDED AT MADISON SQUARE GARDEN), this experience is much more meaningful - he manages to make the main room feel like the lounge - it's that intimate - without losing the "spectacle". The oldies are less tight than on the '72 enterprise, but he's more into it. His 20th entry that night/morning, "Bridge Over Troubled Water", is essential E.P.! Disc #3 is the one I played first. Although it's called "The Rehearsal", it's actually "live outtakes", if you will, followed by actual in-studio tracks. "That's All Right" is the closest thing to Sun Elvis - the minimalist backing pushes Elvis to reach back for a few notes not heard since 1955. "...A Fool Such As I" and "Such A Night", big selling points for me, are interesting, but unfortunately very loose. But the most compelling entry is the very last, "Oh Happy Day". This might be the most deeply felt performance of his entire career. It sounds to me as if he's singing to a record/reference disc, but the intensity is unbelievable. I would like to rate this historic package a "5", but the non-afficionado who wants to hear an out of context great version of a particular song could be very disappointed. The occasional lack of focus is accepted by the fans who want to follow Elvis' creative process, but not all listeners get into it that heavy. Without getting too heavy myself, let's say BMG has kept up the great work with this release.