Review of Goodbye Yellow Brick Road By Elton John

The Album cover to Etlon Johns Goodbye Yellow Brick Road. It has a very glamorous sytle walking onto a yellow brick road.

Goodbye Yellow Brick Road Album Cover

Casey Martin, Author

Elton John is one of the most prominent artists of his time throughout the 70s and the era of Classic Rock. Elton has many hits like “Bennie and the Jets”, “Jamaica Jerk Off”, and “I’m Still Standing” but his real masterpiece is the Goodbye Yellow Brick Road Album. Throughout the album there are some of his most promoted hits like “Funeral For a Friend / Love Lies Bleeding”, “Candle In The Wind”, “Bennie And The Jets”, “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road”, “All The Girls Love Alice”, “Saturday Night’s Alright (For Fighting)”. Some of these songs even got top charts in the US for example “Saturday Night’s Alright (For Fighting)” reaching #12. “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road” reached #2. And “Bennie And The Jets” reaching #1. With the background out of the way, I am going to review each in order on a scale out of ten and what the song is like in my opinion. 

To start the album Elton opens with “Funeral For a Friend / Love Lies Bleeding”. This song stretches out to be 11.06min being the longest song on the album. Although the long length is daunting this song is still a masterpiece. This song has one the best instrumentals I have listened to with dramatic highs and low mellow areas. Near the back end of the song is when the lyrics kick in describing the hardship of an ending relationship. Overall this is my personal favorite song on this album which is slightly odd but I would definitely give it a rating of 10/10. 

The next song on the album is “Candle in the Wind”. This song although with a slow instrumental mainly shows off Elton John’s piano skills with a light background of drums and some clean guitar riffs mixed throughout the song. The song is about Marilyn Monroe and is in tribute to her when she died 11 years prior. Overall I would give this song an 8/10 is another solid track on the album. 

The next song on the album is “Bennie and the Jets”. Bennie and the Jets is definitely a top 3 song in Elton’s discography. This song gives off a massive energetic feeling with one of the most recognizable piano tracks Elton has ever had. The drums and subtle bass line add to the piano perfectly creating what some people think is Elton’s best song. I would give this song a rating of 10/10. 

The next song on the album is the title track “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road”. This is again one of his greatest hits with a worthy representation of being the title track of the album. Although it is one of his slower more mellow songs like Candle in the Wind the combination of piano and opera-like singing done by Elton makes for a magnificent goodbye song with the right amount of joy and sorrow some painful goodbyes give off. Overall I would rate the song as a 10/10. 

The next song on the album is “This Song Has No Title.” This song is one of the more interesting songs on the album starting very slow and mellow but with dramatic risings like around every minute in the song to mix it up and give the song a more dramatic ending. Overall this song isn’t really something I personally like but it isn’t something I would be opposed to listening to, I would give the song a 5/10. 

The next song on the album “Grey Seal” gives a different change of pace to the start of the album with the majority of slower songs. In this song the piano really shows through with a nice and smooth fast-paced beat along with Elton’s energetic singing it gives the song an overall great vibe with some goofy instrumental mixed in. I would give Grey Seal a 7/10. 

For Elton’s next song on the album, he goes a little wacky and comes out with a wacky song known as “Jamaica Jerk-Off”. This song was inspired by them just laying around in Jamaica and one of their recording members not showing up. This song just has a very wacky fast paced vibe, with one of my favorite choruses in the album. Overall this song deserves a 9/10. 

The next track of the album is “I’ve Seen That Movie Too.” This song brings the album down to a slower pace with a steady drum line and random piano notes. Elton’s voice is really the main rhythmic focus of the song with his voice changing tone and pitch throughout. Overall this isn’t one of my favorite songs on the album and in my opinion is more of a filler song. I would give it a rating of 4.5/10

The next song is “Sweet Painted Lady.” This song continues the vibe of the song before it is on the track but I think that this one is a little more entertaining to me. This song has a pretty good chorus complemented by a nice bass line and piano accompaniment. Overall I think this song is one of his better more filler-type songs in the album. I would give this song a 6.5/10. 

The next song on the album is “The Ballad Of Danny Bailey (1909 – 1934)”, This song details the death of Danny Bailey who was a moonshiner. This song has an old Western feel with the combination of an orchestral feel. This song starts slow but then progressively the rhythm picks up to a nice fast pace. Overall this song in my opinion is a 7/10. 

The next song is “Dirty Little Girl”. This is another solid, more upbeat song on the album. This song features a strong drum line with a light background of piano and the occasional guitar riff. The chorus is very raspy giving a different feel to Elton’s music which is a nice change of pace. Overall this song in my opinion is a 7/10. 

The 12th song on the album is “All The Girls Love Alice”. This is another more fast-paced song on the album with a very nice guitar and drum line with a very light piano. As for the singing, it isn’t really anything special, just a more standard Elton singing. Overall I would rate this song a 6.5/10. 

The next song is “Your Sister Can’t Twist (But She Can Rock ‘N’ Roll).” This song is one of the more underrated songs in the album in my opinion being just an overall upbeat vibe. This is one of the better choruses on the album with a great instrumental as well. This song also just in general gets sort of wacky with some parts sounding like clown music which I find interesting but does well for the song. I would rate this song a 7.5/10. 

The next song is “Saturday Night’s Alright for Fighting” This is another one of Elton’s greatest songs of all time. This is the ultimate fighting song with another upbeat tempo. This song can’t be described with words really you just have to listen to it. 10/10. 

The next song is “Roy Rogers”. This song takes us to the slow songs of the album after the last couple being fast-paced. This song relies heavily on the piano and Etlon’s singing with the light drumline. Overall this song isn’t anything special 5/10. 

The 2nd to the last song is “Social Disease”. This song is not the Elton John norm being like a rock with a country vibe. This song feels like I am going to a more modern country museum and isn’t really expected in the album. Overall I would say this song is a 6/10. 

The last song to finish out the album is “Harmony”. This song comes out right away with a strong baseline and doesn’t waste any time getting started and yet it is a slower song yet fast. Elton really shows out with the vocals and backups with lots of opera or gospel background. Overall this song is a good finish to the end of the album and wraps it up nicely. I would give it a rating of 6.5/10. 

Overall this album is just one of the greats of the 1970s and undoubtedly one of the greatest classic rock albums. Even others at the school, I interviewed said it was great. Both Jerel and Bryce gave it a 10/10 and both had different favorite songs. Jerel’s favorite is “Jamaica Jerk Off.” while Bryce’s is the title track “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road.” No matter if you’re a fan of Elton John or not you still have to appreciate how much of a masterpiece the album is which is why I am giving it an overall rating of 9.5/10.