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Love Must Be Tough
Eleanor covers old ground afresh
Colm O Hare, 21 May 2008
“What a drag it is getting old,” sings the Wexford-based singer-songwriter on the opening lines of the first track of her seventh solo album. The jazzy, samba-like version of the Rolling Stones’ 1966 hit, ‘Mother’s Little Helper’ is followed by the neo-classic pop balladry of the title-track, an original co-written with ‘60s Los Angeles icon Johnny Rivers.
An almost accapella version of Sly Stone’s ‘70s soulful cry, ‘If You Want Me To Stay’ is a brave choice but works much better here than it might sound on paper. A more joyous sound is apparent on the Van Morrison-tinged ‘Roll Out Better Days’ while the jaunty, almost Dixieland jazz of ‘Old, New, Borrowed And Blue’ is co-written with the Beautiful South’s Dave Rotheray.
Meanwhile, self-deprecating humour takes centre-stage on ‘The Night May Still Be Young But I Am Not’ (also penned with Rotheray) while McEvoy takes yet another stylistic turn with the inclusion of three country numbers. They include a straight-forward version of Rodney Crowell’s languid ‘Shame On The Moon’, a muscular take on Terry Allen’s ‘Lubbock Woman’ and Butch Hancock’s gorgeous Tex-Mex classic ‘He [She] Never Spoke Spanish To Me’.
Perfectly encapsulating the overall theme, the closing track, a rollicking run through of Nick Lowe’s ‘I Knew The Bride When She Used To Rock And Roll’ is a suitably wry look at better days gone by.
Nothing like growing old gracefully!