Elton John, Victim of Love

Barry Walters

By Barry Walters

on 09.24.12 in Reviews

Victim Of Love

Elton John
A deserved flop

The problem isn’t that Elton went disco — he’d been dabbling in it since “Philadelphia Freedom.” The problem is his tangible lack of commitment to it. John doesn’t write, play or produce anything on this deserved 1979 flop: He simply sings and, like everyone else here, he’s on autopilot. Producer-songwriter Pete Bellotte repeats the rock-disco groove he helped create for Donna Summer’s then-recent landmark Bad Girls with drummer Keith Forsey and keyboardist Thor Baldursson — both Summer vets — and studio cats like Toto’s Steve Lukather. The crucial difference is that here everything is thoroughly clichéd: The opening Chuck Berry cover gets no better than Ethel Merman’s infamously disastrous disco platter.