His 30th solo album, this set is only John’s second without any of his long-serving band members. The result focuses all attention on the headline act and his piano, which, alongside T-Bone Burnett’s pure production, recalls the simplicity of his earliest works.
Lyricist Bernie Taupin’s evocative songs suggest themes of going home, nostalgia and regret, but any lamenting is countered by Elton’s spirited adventuring through gospel, soul and boogie-woogie styles.
‘The Diving Board’ is an adult affair, but impressive enough to explore, and reinforces Elton’s continuing creative renaissance.
Words: Simon Harper
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