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Get Happy

4.7 out of 5 stars 26 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

At 20 tracks long, this 1980 soul-influenced LP shows how prolific and brilliant Costello was at his peak. High Fidelity, King Horse, Clowntime is Over , and Motel Matches are only some of the classics contained here.

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Costello continued his most-prolific-man-alive act with the 20-track Get Happy!!, his fourth album in 30 months. He says what he has to say and shuts up--only a small handful of cuts approach or go over the three-minute mark--often in a pile-driving style inspired by Stax/Volt. (Sometimes loosely inspired; his version of the Sam & Dave ballad "I Can't Stand Up for Falling Down" is played in a rush.) Costello's wordplay is at a height here, but it doesn't divert the eye from the emotional wreckage behind the scenes: as he sings on "Human Touch," "What the makeup hides can't be made up with a kiss." --Rickey Wright
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (May 1, 2007)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Hip-O
  • ASIN: B000OHZJL4
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #15,013 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Amazon's Elvis Costello Store

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Tim Brough VINE VOICE on May 5, 2007
Format: Audio CD
After three brilliant albums of tart, taut albums fueled by incessant touring and the excesses of rock living, Elvis Costello made the headlines with a single regrettable drunken utterance. Before anyone knew what was happening, he became better known than most pop artists of the day, and for all the wrong reasons. It forced him to a place that made him reevaluate his career to that point, and "Get Happy" began to emerge. He immersed himself in a stack of his old favorite soul records (Booker T, Four Tops, Stax/Volt albums), and emerged a different songwriter. "Get Happy" was the album where EC challenged himself to move beyond a public's expectation and led to his forth five star record.

While Elvis and the Attractions weren't completely r'n'b and alcohol saturated, some of Elvis' songs here do show the frenzy that they were recorded in. He once said that Nick Lowe's attitude toward production was "a fader in one hand an a vodka bottle in the other." The result was that these songs were frequently written and recorded in canon blasts, like the boast of "Possession" being written in five minutes after an afternoon's infatuation with a cocktail waitress. The band was challenging itself to pound out as much music as possible, as if every idea could be turned into a song. It created a wealth of material, as evidenced by the original album's sonic blast of twenty songs.

It also meant that EC's vocal performances were sometimes given all the nuance of a party reveler standing astride the jukebox ("I Stand Accused" and "Possession" being two obvious violators). On the other hand, there are some stunners here that point at the upcoming "Trust" and EC's vocal growing sophistication, as in the brilliant "Riot Act.
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I am a long time and huge Elvis C fan. This was an album I did not have when it came out - it was one of my friends and we would go to each others homes to listen to each others collections - the good old days? I still love this album. Some of Costello's work (Imperial Bedroom for example) which is dated - badly. Not the lyrics, just the sound. Get Happy, has a slightly dated feel to it, but in a good way. It verges on timeless and with almost every song being a great song, well worth getting for the Elvis fan. Glad I got it on CD. Lyrics and artwork - love it.
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I used to consider Armed Forces Elvis' best early work, but I've recently reconsidered that stance as I've listed to this album again after many years away from it. This thing is wall to wall greatness. Love the stripped down production after the more polished Armed Forces. Bruce Thomas' bass playing may be at his zenith here.
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Format: Audio CD
Get Happy by Elvis & the Attractions is up there with Abbey Road as one of the greatest rock albums ever made, from the first cut to the last. Incredible wordplay floating in a stew of crunchy, tight, sparkling rockin' new wave rhythm country & ska. This one album contains enough golden nuggets to make careers for 4 or 5 lesser artists. I listened to it constantly 25 years ago - it's just as stunning today.
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Loved it when it first came out,but never fully appreciated how good it was until now.Costello has had a long journey,and I like his more recent,more "mature" work as much as his earlier work.This was a somewhat overlooked album at the time,but it is amazing how the level of how high both songwriting and performance of the band is...
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Format: MP3 Music
After three brilliant albums of tart, taut albums fueled by incessant touring and the excesses of rock living, Elvis Costello made the headlines with a single regrettable drunken utterance. Before anyone knew what was happening, he became better known than most pop artists of the day, and for all the wrong reasons. It forced him to a place that made him reevaluate his career to that point, and "Get Happy" began to emerge. He immersed himself in a stack of his old favorite soul records (Booker T, Four Tops, Stax/Volt albums), and emerged a different songwriter. "Get Happy" was the album where EC challenged himself to move beyond a public's expectation and led to his forth five star record.

While Elvis and the Attractions weren't completely r'n'b and alcohol saturated, some of Elvis' songs here do show the frenzy that they were recorded in. He once said that Nick Lowe's attitude toward production was "a fader in one hand an a vodka bottle in the other." The result was that these songs were frequently written and recorded in canon blasts, like the boast of "Possession" being written in five minutes after an afternoon's infatuation with a cocktail waitress. The band was challenging itself to pound out as much music as possible, as if every idea could be turned into a song. It created a wealth of material, as evidenced by the original album's sonic blast of twenty songs.

It also meant that EC's vocal performances were sometimes given all the nuance of a party reveler standing astride the jukebox ("I Stand Accused" and "Possession" being two obvious violators). On the other hand, there are some stunners here that point at the upcoming "Trust" and EC's vocal growing sophistication, as in the brilliant "Riot Act.
Read more ›
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