How's this for a political statement? Go see Elton John
. You'll hear "Philadelphia Freedom" and you'll cross Fred Phelps' anemic picket line, which usually shows up to protest the gay singer's ... well, his existence. During "The Bitch Is Back," contemplate how your ticket money contributes to keeping the legendarily acquisitive pop icon financially bulletproof now that President Bush has signed that usury-lovin' bankruptcy bill into law. Sure, John isn't a U.S. citizen, but he lives part time in Atlanta, and his "The Red Piano" is a huge hit in Vegas, where the compulsive shopper plays for gamblers in a kind of Republican nightmare collision of fiscal looseness. What could be more American? Buying a $6 beer during a post-1975 song, that's what. But John's last couple of discs, including 2004's sweet and sturdy Peachtree Road
, deserve your sober attention. And your cash.