The latest release of This Years Model includes the b-sides, demos, live tracks, alternate versions, and previously unreleased tracks that were included on the 2002 re-release. However, this “Deluxe Edition” includes Costello’s 1978 concert from The Warner Theater in Washington, DC. For that reason alone, this newer version is worth the price of admission.
Costello’s sophomore punk rock effort has been included on most critics “Best Albums” list and there’s really no wondering why. Edgier and more raucous than My Aim is True, thanks to the help of Costello’s backing band, The Attractions, much of the bang on this album can be credited to keyboardist Steve Nieve, bassist Bruce Thomas and drummer Pete Thomas. For anyone unfamiliar with Elvis Costello, this album is like a master’s course unto itself; it contains the same punk/new wave elements that garnered Costello so much acclaim in the 70’s and gives listeners a glimpse of the prolific singer/songwriter yet to come. Songs like “No Action” and “Pump it up” still sound as rollicking as they ever did. The demos and the live concert recordings still remain the biggest draw however. Brimming with cynicism and catchy sentiment, memorable melodies and of course Costello’s one of kind vocals, This Years Model remains in style no matter what year it is.
By Charley Lee