on January 7, 2004
'Jailhouse Rock' was not originally released as an LP although it contains some of Elvis's best, and hardest rocking, numbers (does Rock'n'Roll get any better than the great title track, as well as the wonderful "Treat Me Nice" and "You're So Square" - thank you Mr. Leiber and Mr. Stoller). 'Love Me Tender' likewise was not available on LP, but the songs are gentler, as predetermined by the non-electric, Civil War-era setting of the movie (although several of the songs are uptempo non-ballads, if technically not "rockers").
The attitude from Jailhouse Rock the movie (Elvis pretty much sneered his way through the film, and it's great) is carried over to the soundtrack. There are also some excellent, underrated ballads (to hear a great cover version of "Young and Beautiful," find Aaron Neville's live version, last seen on the hard-to-find import tribute 'The Last Temptation of Elvis').
The songs from 'Love Me Tender' (his first of many soundtrack recordings) do not fare as well, despite the well-known and heartfelt title track. They are certainly not bad, however, especially when compared to some of his later movie offerings.
The CD contains several previously unreleased tracks from both films, including alternate takes and stereo recordings. As with most of RCA's other Elvis soundtracks reissued in the 90's, usually as "2fers," the sound quality is excellent (unfortunately, many of these reissues are now out-of-print).
The 12-page booklet contains lots of information and great photos from the films and soundtrack recordings (the cover photo itself is one of the best of any Elvis album). In keeping with the deluxe packaging, the CD is a picture disc and there is a tray card photo of the cover.