Madman Across The Water Elton John

Album info

Album-Release:
1971

HRA-Release:
30.10.2015

Album including Album cover

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  • 1Tiny Dancer06:17
  • 2Levon05:23
  • 3Razor Face04:45
  • 4Madman Across The Water05:58
  • 5Indian Sunset06:48
  • 6Holiday Inn04:18
  • 7Rotten Peaches05:00
  • 8All The Nasties05:10
  • 9Goodbye01:51
  • Total Runtime45:30

Info for Madman Across The Water

'Madman Across The Water' produced only a couple of minor hits, which may have something to do with the fact that its best songs are all five or six minutes long. But they're among the strongest songs in the entire Elton John catalog--especially the lovely opening track, 'Tiny Dancer,' which builds from a light, delicately melodic verse to a sweeping, dramatic chorus. Another highlight is the inscrutably biographic 'Levon,' whose title character was born 'on a Christmas day when the New York Times said God is dead.'

John's luxurious piano melodies, Bernie Taupin's poetic lyrics, and Paul Buckmaster's lush string arrangements all stretch out on 'Madman Across The Water', giving the record a grandiose, sweeping feel when it is not riding dark, surging currents, as on the memorably edgy title track. There is a painstaking, interior quality here that goes missing from John's early pop-song oriented albums and from the later excesses of 'Goodbye Yellow Brick Road'. For this reason, 'Madman Across The Water' is a crucial, unique addition to the John catalogue.

'Trading the cinematic aspirations of Tumbleweed Connection for a tentative stab at prog rock, Elton John and Bernie Taupin delivered another excellent collection of songs with Madman Across the Water. Like its two predecessors, Madman Across the Water is driven by the sweeping string arrangements of Paul Buckmaster, who gives the songs here a richly dark and haunting edge. And these are songs that benefit from grandiose treatments. With most songs clocking in around five minutes, the record feels like a major work, and in many ways it is. While it's not as adventurous as Tumbleweed Connection, the overall quality of the record is very high, particularly on character sketches 'Levon' and 'Razor Face,' as well as the melodramatic 'Tiny Dancer' and the paranoid title track. Madman Across the Water begins to fall apart toward the end, but the record remains an ambitious and rewarding work, and John never attained its darkly introspective atmosphere again.' (Stephen Thomas Erlewine, AMG)

Elton John, piano, vocals
Roger Pope, drums (Tracks 1, 3 & 6)
David Glover, bass (Tracks 1, 3 & 6)
Caleb Quaye, electric guitar (Tracks 1–3), acoustic guitar (Track 6)
BJ Cole, steel guitar (Track 1)
Davey Johnstone, acoustic guitar (Tracks 1, 4 & 7), mandolin (Track 6), sitar (Track 6)
Paul Buckmaster, arrangement (Tracks 1, 2, 4–6, 8 & 9)
Barry Morgan, drums (Track 2)
Brian Odgers, bass (Track 2)
Brian Dee, harmonium (Track 2)
Rick Wakeman, organ (Tracks 3, 4 & 7)
Jack Emblow, accordion (Track 3)
Terry Cox, drums (Tracks 4, 5 & 7)
Herbie Flowers, bass (Madman Tracks 4, 5 & 7)
Ray Cooper, percussion (Track 4), tambourine (Tracks 7 & 8)
Chris Spedding, electric guitar (Track 4), slide guitar (Track 7)
Diana Lewis, ARP synthesizer (Tracks 4 & 7)
Chris Laurence, double bass (Track 5)
Cantores em Ecclesia Choir, backing vocals (Tracks 5 & 8)
Nigel Olsson, drums (Track 8)
Dee Murray, bass (Track 8)
Lesley Duncan, backing vocals (Tracks 1, 6 & 7)
Sue & Sunny, backing vocals (Tracks 1, 6 & 7)
Barry St. John, backing vocals (Tracks 1, 6 & 7)
Liza Strike, backing vocals (Tracks 1, 6 & 7)
Roger Cook, backing vocals (Tracks 1, 6 & 7)
Tony Burrows, backing vocals (Tracks 1, 6 & 7)
Terry Steele, backing vocals (Tracks 1, 6 & 7)
Dee Murray, backing vocals (Tracks 1, 6 & 7)
Nigel Olsson, backing vocals (Tracks 1, 6 & 7)

Recorded 27 February; 9–14 August 1971 at Trident Studios, London, England
Engineered by Robin Geoffrey Cable
Produced by Gus Dudgeon

Digitally remastered


Elton John
The monumental career of international singer/songwriter and performer Elton John has spanned more than five decades. He is one of the top-selling solo artists of all time, achieving 35 gold and 25 platinum albums, and he has had 29 consecutive US Top 40 hits. Elton has sold more than 250 million records worldwide, and holds the record for the biggest selling single of all time, ‘Candle in the Wind ’97’, which sold over 33 million copies. Since his career began in 1969, Elton has played over 3,000 concerts worldwide.

In 1970 Elton's self-titled breakthrough album and evergreen hit ‘Your Song’ introduced him to an international stage, and in the period between 1970-76 with producer Gus Dudgeon at the helm, Elton and his song writing partner Bernie Taupin they made an astonishing fourteen albums, including the legendary’ Goodbye Yellow Brick Road,’ and ‘Captain Fantastic And The Brown Dirt Cowboy’ - the first album ever to enter the Billboard Chart at Number One.

In the 1980s he had hits with the albums ‘21 At 3’, ‘Jump Up!’ and ‘Too Low For Zero’ - the home of two of Elton's live favourites, ‘I Guess That's Why They Call It The Blues’ and ‘I'm Still Standing’.

Five decades since the 1969 release of his first album, ‘Empty Sky’, Elton John is creating some of the finest music of his career. The 2001 album ‘Songs From The West Coast’ gave him another smash hit single with ‘I Want Love’. In 2002 he was awarded an honorary doctorate from the Royal Academy of Music. Other landmark awards include Best British Male Artist Brit Award 1991; induction into the Rock ’n’ Roll Hall of Fame in 1994; five Grammy Awards 1986-2000; Grammy Legend Award, 2001; Kennedy Center Honor, 2004; 11 Ivor Novello Awards between 1973 and 2000; and in 1998, a knighthood from Queen Elizabeth II.

2007 saw the release of ‘Rocket Man - The Definitive Hits’, a single CD album which features eighteen classic hit songs. Also in 2007, for the first time ever, Elton's entire back catalogue of nearly 500 tracks (90 singles and 32 albums) became available to download legally. The release of ‘Rocket Man’ marked a huge anniversary for Elton - on March 25th, 2007, he celebrated his 60th birthday while breaking his own record with an unmatched 60th concert at the legendary Madison Square Garden in New York. No other entertainer has come close to matching this record.

Elton remains committed to his music and to touring, becoming more rather than less busy as time passes. In 2011 Elton returned to The Colosseum, Caesars Palace, Las Vegas with his all-new show, ‘The Million Dollar Piano’. In 2012 he returned to the recording studio with producer T Bone Burnett and toured North, Central and South America. His 2012 plans include a tour of Europe plus a special appearance at The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee concert at Buckingham Palace.

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