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5 Mar 2010

The Story Behind: "All Quiet On The Western Front"

Taupin's collaboration on "Jump Up!" album brought his particularly homage to the Erich Maria Remarque's 1930 novel with the same title. The book about the story of six German soldiers who volunteered to fight in World War I, is told from the perspective of one incredibly observant young soldier, Paul Bäumer, who exposes details of life on the Western Front, exploring the necessity and purpose of wars. The Nazis, who were rising in power in Germany, hated its grim portrayal of war and obligated the author to establish in Switzerland, first, and then in the US.

Bernie captured the essence on lines like "nobody saw a youth asleep in the foreign soil, planted by the war / Feel the pulse of human blood pouring forth" and on "Ghosts float in a flooded trench as Germany dies / Fever reaps the flowers of France".

The song is reminded for the final apotheosis end featuring James Newton-Howard keyboards and, specially, Toto Jeff Porcaro's thunderous drumming. And like in "Daniel", Elton crossed out Taupin's line "thin white man in stinking tents" because he felt it was not attractive to sing, althought he played that line live on the tour. Elton defined the single, maybe true or not, as "the worth selling single in the Phonogram's story".

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