Elton John Captain Fantastic and the Brown Dirt Cowboy
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- Released: July 1, 1995
- Originally Released: 1996
- Label: Island
Rolling Stone - 12/11/03, p.134Ranked #158 in Rolling Stone's "500 Greatest Albums Of All Time"
- 1.Captain Fantastic And The Brown Dirt Cowboy
- 2.Tower Of Babel
- 3.Bitter Fingers
- 4.Tell Me When The Whistle Blows
- 5.Someone Saved My Life Tonight
- 6.Meal Ticket, (Gotta Get A)
- 7.Better Off Dead
- 9.We All Fall In Love Sometimes
- 11.Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds - (with John Lennon)
- 12.One Day At A Time
- 13.Philadelphia Freedom
Personnel: Elton John (vocals, strings, piano, electric piano, harpsichord, Clavinet, Mellotron, keyboards, synthesizer, ARP synthesizer); Elton John; John Lennon (guitar); Dee Murray (bass guitar, background vocals); Ray Cooper (congas, bongos, cymbals, Jew's harp, shaker, tambourine, triangle, percussion, bells, hand bells, gong); Davey Johnstone (vocals, guitar, acoustic guitar, electric guitar, mandolin, piano, synthesizer, background vocals); David Hentschel (keyboards, synthesizer, ARP synthesizer); Nigel Olsson (drums, background vocals).
Audio Mixer: Greg Penny.
Audio Remasterer: Tony Cousins.
Audio Remixers: Gus Dudgeon; Phil Dunne.
Liner Note Author: John Tobler.
Recording information: Caribou Ranch, CO (06/1974-07/1974).
Ensemble: Elton John.
Illustrators: Harry Willock; Alan Aldridge.
Arranger: Gene Page.
Sitting atop the charts in 1975, Elton John and Bernie Taupin recalled their rise to power in Captain Fantastic and the Brown Dirt Cowboy, their first explicitly conceptual effort since Tumbleweed Connection. It showcases each at the peak of his power, as John crafts supple, elastic, versatile pop and Taupin's inscrutable wordplay is evocative, even moving. Although the musical skill on display here is dazzling, as it bounces between country and hard rock within the same song, this album needs time to reveal its treasures, but once it does, it captures John and Taupin at a career pinnacle. They collapsed in hubris and excess not long afterward, but this remains a testament to the strengths of their creative partnership. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine
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