[Guest Review by Gentleman John Battles] (Reality) Rick Saucedo is not the world's first Elvis Impersonator. Ral Donner, Bill Parsons, Terry Stafford, and even Gene Vincent, had people thinking they were Presley, recording under a different name, whether they meant to or not . Allis Lesley was performing as "The Female Elvis" before Elvis served his hitch in The Army, or the term "Drag King" was invented. BUT, Saucedo started out in the early 70's, several years before Elvis's death jump started a rash of imitators. Aaron Milenski recently pointed out, in Ugly Things #30, that Saucedo's own recent re- release, "Heaven Was Blue" (From 1978.), finds him in the unlikely position of recording introspective, late Psychedelic-influenced Hard Rock . Even more unlikely is the idea of perhaps the world's leading latter day Elvis Impersonator (they like to be called "Elvis Interpreters") compiling a Halloween Party CD. But, that's where unlikely is never unlikeable.......
"Rick Saucedo's Hallowe'en Party" can be neatly divided into three categories.
1) Rick singing several Hallowe'en Rock’n’Roll favorites: "Purple People Eater,” "Werewolves of London,” "Bad Moon Rising,” and, seriously, the strongest reading of "I Put a Spell on You" that I've heard in years, in his Presleyan voice.
2) The (mostly) original versions of popular Horror and Sci-Fi themes, opening with Mancini's "Experiment in Terror,” the opening music to Chicago's "Creature Features"), Link Wray's “Rumble” (which was the theme song for Chicago's beloved Svengoolie....tho' his version had ladies screaming over the original track...JUST LIKE HERE!!) and "Swan Lake,” also known as the theme to 1931's original "Dracula,” though this appears to be Philip Glass, from the updated film soundtrack (I found that version for 50 cents but, I'm more afraid of the modern soundtrack than I am of The Count), and going headlong into Tube Terrors, "Dark Shadows,” "Alfred Hitchcock Presents ,” "The Twilight Zone,” "The Outer Limits ,” "The Munsters,” " The Addams Family,” and even "Casper, The Friendly Ghost,” rounding things out with that Midnight Special favorite, "Frankenstein" by The Edgar Winter Group (The LONG version, too).
3) THEN, we're treated to a healthy sampling of material from the aforementioned "Heaven Was Blue". It doesn’t appear to have anything to do with Hallowe'en, but, it's highly enjoyable, dynamically diverse, melodic Rock music that sometimes evokes "S.F.Sorrow" by The Pretty Things, and sometimes just sounds like it could have been popular in the 70s, but was hindered only by it's own originality. Some
of this music COULD have been on the soundtrack of a "Kids trapped in the woods, and you know what comes next..." movie, if only for the "You can hear a pin drop " quality of the lyrics, Saucedo's unpretentious vocals ("youthful and vulnerable sounding” as Aaron Milenski accurately points out), and the interplay between acoustic and electric guitar work, (which, I can't help referring to Milenski again, sounds beautiful and ethereal). That's not to say it doesn’t rock, it does. It demands that you spend quality time with it, which you can, by ordering "Heaven Was Blue" at www.ricksaucedo.com. Ask about "Hallowe'en Party " while you're there.