The White Noise Revisited

Have you ever purchased an album, upon the recommendation of a magazine review or a friend, listened to it, hated it, put it aside and forgotten about it only to revisit it many years later and wonder to yourself “What the bloody hell was I smoking’?”

Or, worse yet, purchased an album, hated it, SOLD IT or gave it away to a friend, rediscovered the genius and kicked yourself in the ass because now you’re gonna have to re-buy it?

I have.

Many, many times, I’m afraid.

One such album is Imperial Bedroom by Elvis Costello. Being accustomed to the fidgety sonics of “May Aim Is True” through “Trust” era Costello, and hating “Almost Blue”, I decided to give the old boy another shot with his newest at the time, which just happens to be the album we’re discussing here, today.

Imperial Bedroom sounded a little…too serious for me at the time. It was lacking in emotion, I felt, and didn’t contain one song I could really sink my teeth into. It was produced so slickly (Geoff Emerick, I believe?) it almost felt like 70’s AOR, or…GASP!…serious rock! Not my cup of tea at that point in my life.

So I sold it.

I moved on throughout the 80’s and 90’s, oblivious to my old pal Elvis and any new sonic adventures he was currently embarking upon. My musical pallet matured, I believe, during the two decades since I last listened to Imperial Bedroom. I remember listening to the expanded re-mastered editions of Aim and This Year’s Model and thinking, “I really miss this guy!” I heard him with new ears and luckily I married a gal who happened to love Elvis Costello and who, of course, had a weathered old CD of Imperial Bedroom in her collection.

Long story short it is now one of my favorite Costello releases, and Man Out Of Time and Beyond Belief are currently in my top 5 Elvis Costello songs.

Has this happened to you? With which album?

Do tell, do share.

It makes life all that more interesting.

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