Flip City Demos

Elvis Costello

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Flip City Demos Review

by Ted Mills

A widely circulating bootleg, this is a CD of a demo tape of Costello's early band Flip City, running through a few covers and some Costello originals. The sound of the CD is muddy and bass heavy, taken from a several generation copy, but of much historical importance to the Costello fan. Here are early versions of "Living in Paradise" and "Pay It Back" with different lyrics, and a venom-less take on "Radio Radio" called "Radio Soul." Costello's links with his idols (Gram Parsons, Randy Newman, Bob Dylan) are more explicit here then on his mature efforts and the cover of "Knockin' on Heaven's Door" is a hoot. These songs are also found on the boots Aim to Please and Our Aim Is True with similar sound quality and only one track ("Imagination Is a Powerful Deceiver") has ever made it on an official release.

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