Couldn't Have Said It Better

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Couldn't Have Said It Better
Studio album by Meat Loaf
Released September 23, 2003
Recorded 2001-03
Genre Rock, hard rock
Length 55:23
Label Mercury, Sanctuary (US)
Producer Tony Flores, James Michael, Peter Mokran
Meat Loaf chronology
VH1: Storytellers
(1999)
Couldn't Have Said It Better
(2003)
Live with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra
(2004)

Couldn't Have Said It Better is a 2003 album by Meat Loaf. Only for the third time in his career, he released an album without any songs written by Jim Steinman (not counting the bonus tracks). Although Meat Loaf claimed that Couldn't Have Said It Better was "the most perfect album [he] did since Bat out of Hell", it wasn't quite as successful.

Three singles were released, "Did I Say That", "Couldn't Have Said It Better" and "Man of Steel", all with little chart impact. The album was recorded for Universal Music Germany's Polydor division and was licenced to Mercury Records for UK release and Sanctuary Records for US release, while global distribution was handled by parent company Universal Music Group. Most of this was caused by poor promotion on behalf of Sanctuary, the company that released the album in the US, and few actual singles being distributed, especially in the UK - his biggest market. However, "Couldn't Have Said It Better" feat. Patti Russo reached #1 on the UK rock charts. The duet also charted on the AC Top 40 in the US (the only song to do so since "I'd Lie for You"). The videos also had low budgets, in stark contrast to his 1990s videos.

However, the album was a minor success worldwide and reached #4 in the UK charts. There were many writers for the album including Diane Warren and James Michael. Warren has written for Meat Loaf in the past and had some very big hits. Michael had never written for Meat Loaf before and it was only his songs that were released as singles from the album.

Several versions of the album have been released, some with bonus-material. Also, the color of the album cover is different in the UK (blue) from the other territories (red).

Tour[edit]

The album was accompanied by a sold-out world tour which was used to promote the album and some of Meat Loaf's biggest hits. On November 17, 2003, during a performance at London's Wembley Arena, he collapsed with what was later diagnosed as Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome. The following week, he underwent a surgical procedure intended to correct the problem. As a result, Meat Loaf's insurance agency did not allow him to perform for any longer than one hour and 45 minutes.

Meat Loaf finished his tour and came back two years later for his Hair of the Dog That Bit You world tour, which was a sellout for over 160 concerts. As well as singing all the classics, he sang a cover version of the hit single "Black Betty". During this tour, Meat Loaf also sang one of the songs from his upcoming album Bat out of Hell III called "Only When I Feel". He mentioned that it was not one of the most critical songs on the album, and it has since been removed from that album's track listing. Meat Loaf said that this could be his last 'world' tour, and when he came to promote Bat out of Hell III, he would be doing less than a fifth of the concerts he did on this tour.

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 3/5 stars link

Track listing[edit]

Vocal arrangements (track 1) by Todd Rundgren Orchestral arrangements (tracks 1, 2, 5, 8, 11) by Aaron Zigman

No. Title Length
1. "Couldn't Have Said It Better"   7:07
2. "Did I Say That?"   6:02
3. "Why Isn't That Enough?"   4:07
4. "Love You Out Loud"   4:10
5. "Man of Steel" (duet with Pearl Aday) 4:44
6. "Intermezzo" (instrumental) 1:28
7. "Testify"   4:56
8. "Tear Me Down"   3:37
9. "You're Right, I Was Wrong"   3:44
10. "Because of You"   3:54
11. "Do It!"   2:36
12. "Forever Young"   5:05
13. "Mercury Blues" (Hidden track) 3:48
14. "Bat out of Hell" (live bonus track, UK edition only from VH1: Storytellers) 11:17

'Testify'[edit]

An early version of the album, titled Testify (eventually dropped because of Phil Collins' Testify release), was released in France by Universal in 2002 as a promo disc not intended for sale. At the time, it was stated that "Did I Say That?" would be the first single (eventually true), and the album would come out March 31, 2003 (eventually not true).

The track listing for this version is as follows:

No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "Testify"   Kevin Griffin 5:23
2. "Did I Say That?"   James Michael 6:06
3. "Tear Me Down"   Stephen Trask 3:38
4. "Why Isn't That Enough?"   Jo Davidson 4:13
5. "Love You Out Loud"   Michael/Nikki Sixx 4:14
6. "Man of Steel" (duet with Pearl Aday) Michael/Sixx 4:46
7. "Unsaid"   Diane Warren 4:30
8. "Do It!"   Billy Rankin 2:41
9. "You're Right, I Was Wrong"   Diane Warren 3:49
10. "Decadent Wish"   Michael Duff/Jud Friedman/Shelley Peiken 4:15
11. "Did I Say That?" (Radio edit) Michael 4:12

Personnel[edit]

The Neverland Express[edit]

Regular Meat Loaf Studio Sidemen[edit]

Studio Musicians[edit]

Australian Edition Bonus Special Live CD[edit]

The Australian release of Couldn't Have Said It Better included a live bonus disc, compiled by Meat Loaf, including 6 live tracks from the American leg of the 2003 world tour.

Track listing[edit]

  1. "Life Is a Lemon and I Want My Money Back" (Jim Steinman) - 6:47
  2. "Tear Me Down" (Trask) - 4:00
  3. "Love You Out Loud" (Michael/Sixx) - 4:34
  4. "I'd Do Anything for Love (But I Won't Do That)" (Steinman) - 10:32
  5. "Couldn't Have Said It Better" (Michael/Sixx) - 8:18
  6. "Bat out of Hell" (Steinman) - 11:47

Personnel[edit]

Musical director/Producer: Kasim Sulton

  • Meat Loaf - vocals, guitar
  • Patti Russo - female lead and backing vocals
  • Paul Crook - lead guitars
  • Randy Flowers - guitars, keyboards, backing vocals
  • Kasim Sulton - bass guitar, backing vocals
  • Mark Alexander - keyboards, backing vocals
  • John Miceli - drums
  • Renee Cologne - backing vocals

Special Edition Bonus CD[edit]

The special editions of the UK and international releases included a bonus disc containing two video clips and an MP3 file from Meat Loaf's 1999 VH1 Storytellers DVD and CD, and the promotional video for "Did I Say That?".

  1. "I'd Do Anything for Love" (video from Meat Loaf Storytellers DVD) (Steinman) - 8:04
  2. "A Kiss Is a Terrible Thing to Waste" (video from Meat Loaf Storytellers DVD) (Andrew Lloyd Webber/Steinman) - 5:24
  3. "Did I Say That?" (video) (Michael) - 4:46
  4. "Two out of Three Ain't Bad" (Meat Loaf VH1 Storytellers DVD, MP3 file) (Steinman) - 4:47