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Elvis Costello & Allen Toussaint's "The River in Reverse"
Set For June 6 Release on Verve Forecast

Concert DVD available in November 2006


The River in Reverse, Elvis Costello & Allen Toussaint's spirited and deeply soulful new album -- seven songs from Toussaint's remarkable catalog; five newly written by the two; and one new song, the title track, written by Costello -- will be released June 6, 2006 by Verve Forecast. A limited edition CD/DVD combo will also be available (DVD features studio footage, photo sessions and more).

Sessions for the album took place over a whirlwind two weeks late last year in Hollywood, CA and at Piety Street Studios in Toussaint's hometown of New Orleans.

Produced by Joe Henry, the album masterfully combines Costello's band The Imposters with Toussaint's horn section (Amadee Castenell, Joe Smith, Sam Williams and Brian Cayolle) and guitarist (Anthony Brown).

Elvis and Allen, UMG image by Jimmy Katz

Toussaint led the ensemble from the piano, with Imposters keyboard player Steve Nieve switching to Hammond B3. The majority of the tracks were cut with the entire group in the room and Costello singing live, occasionally adding his guitar to the mix. Costello selected songs from deep within the Toussaint catalogue such as "Nearer To You," "Freedom For The Stallion" and "Tears, Tears and More Tears." Toussaint kicks off the lead vocal on his composition, "Who's Gonna Help Brother Get Further?" and trades vocal lines with Costello and bassist Davey Faragher on several other tracks.

All of the horn arrangements are marked with Toussaint's distinctive style and, commented Costello, "add a second voice" to the title track, the one song that Costello wrote alone. Just before the recording began, the duo holed up in New York to write together throughout October, a quick-moving process that resulted in four songs on the album of various combinations of words and music.

The songwriting collaboration began with Costello writing lyrics for Toussaint's beautiful minor key variation of Professor Longhair's "Tipitina." The resulting piece is now entitled "Ascension Day." Other new titles include "The Sharpest Thorn," "Broken Promise Land" and "International Echo."

Toussaint previously produced a 1983 Costello cover of Yoko Ono's "Walking on Thin Ice" with the Attractions and The T.K.O. Horns, and also contributed piano to the New Orleans-recorded "Deep Dark Truthful Mirror" from Costello's 1989 album 'Spike.'

Immediately following Hurricane Katrina, Toussaint relocated to New York City where the two renewed their musical friendship at several benefit concerts and club gigs during the a seven day period from the 17th of September, leading to discussions of this new album. The powerful song "The River in Reverse" was written by Costello on September 24th, 2005, and performed by him for the first time at that night's "Parting the Waters" benefit event organized by the The New Yorker magazine.

Costello & Toussaint begin an extensive tour this June.

Also see New Orleans Times Picayune and Rolling Stone stories about the recording of "The River in Reverse."


The River in Reverse track listing:

  1. On Your Way Down (Toussaint)
  2. Nearer To You (Toussaint)
  3. Tears, Tears and More Tears (Toussaint)
  4. The Sharpest Thorn (Costello-Toussaint)
  5. Who's Gonna Help Brother Get Further? (Toussaint)
  6. The River In Reverse (Costello)
  7. Freedom For The Stallion (Toussaint)
  8. Broken Promise Land (Costello-Toussaint)
  9. Ascension Day (Bird-Costello-Toussaint)
  10. International Echo (Costello-Toussaint)
  11. All These Things (Toussaint)
  12. Wonder Woman (Toussaint)
  13. Six-Fingered Man (Costello-Toussaint)

"The River in Reverse"

How long does a promise last?
How long can a lie be told?
What would I take in exchange for my soul?
Would I notice when it was sold?

Wake me up
Wake me up with a slap or kiss
There must be something better than this I don't see how it can get much worse
What do we have to do to send the river in reverse?


Concert DVD "Hot As A Pistol, Keen As A Blade"
set for November 21, 2006 Release

Set features Elvis Costello, Allen Toussaint, The Imposters, Anthony "AB" Brown
and the Crescent City Horns

Recorded live in Montreal in 2006, during his month long tour in support of "The River in Reverse," a collaboration with New Orleans musician Allen Toussaint and featuring his regular backing group, The Imposters, along with Toussaint and his New Orleans Horn Section, The Crescent City Horns.

In the wake of Hurricane Katrina, Costello and Toussaint began the collaboration that resulted in "The River in Reverse." The album includes new and old compositions by Toussaint, several songs co-written by Toussaint and Costello, plus one new Costello original, the title track. Musicians featured on the project include The Imposters, as well as Toussaint’s horn section and guitarist.

Presented in 5.1 surround sound, this amazing DVD includes incredible live performances of songs spanning the last four decades.

FEATURES THE SONGS: (*Not Final Tracklisting*)

Monkey To Man
A Certain Girl
Clownstrike
Tears, Tears And More Tears
Tears Before Bedtime
Poisoned Rose
(I Don’t Want To Go To) Chelsea
Broken Promise Land
Freedom For The Stallion
The River In Reverse
Who’s Gonna Help Brother Get Further?
Deep Dark Truthful Mirror
Play Something Sweet (Brickyard Blues)
Bedlam
Watching The Detectives
Episode of Blonde
Pump It Up
Yes We Can Can
Fortune Teller
Big Chief Medley: (Big Chief/Tipitina/The Olde Professor)
Internation Echo
Clubland
Six-Fingered Man
The Sharpest Thorn

TOTAL RUNNING TIME: 1:53:49

DVD EXTRAS:

Band Introductions
Alison
Who’s Gonna Help Brother - An excerpt from the film "Putting The River In Reverse" by Matthew Buzzel
Interview with Elvis Costello and Allen Toussaint
Photo Gallery
Tour Journal by Elvis Costello

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