Is there anything Elvis Costello can't do? Great songwriter, singer and guitarist. Now he's added terrific game show host too.

Last night at Vancouver's Orpheum Theatre the game show was the Spectacular Spinning Songbook; a twenty-foot wheel, possibly reclaimed from The Price Is Right, bearing the names of songs from Costello back catalogue (plus a few special bonuses) that audience members would come up onto the stage and rotate. Whatever track the wheel landed on, that what the band would play.

The exact rules were ambiguous. It was all about the host anyway, as Costello demonstrated when the wheel delivered the mysterious word "Cash."

"Times are tough. Throw money on stage," he cracked, before explaining that it was an excuse to play some Johnny Cash and launching into a brilliant anecdote about the Man Himself. "I knew it was him at the door. He was wearing black and his belt buckle said JC."

If Costello's Spectacular Spinning Songbook sounds like a weird concept for a concert, it turns out it's weird in practice too. Because when you bring up "contestants" on stage to spin the wheel, they need to have something to do once they've "won" their song. Last night's solution was to lead both men and women into a fake cage (originally occupied by an athletic go-go dancer) and let them shake tush in front of a packed house. When Elvis Costello and his frankly awesome band The Imposters were playing, it was bordering on an unnecessary distraction. When on-stage guests took to opportunity to record the moment for posterity on their smartphones, it was pushing towards rude.

Not that Costello minded. The whole point of the Spectacular Spinning Songbook is that's it's terrific entertainment; a way to reframe his hits and some of his personal favourites into a novel live environment. At one point he abandoned the wheel to offer a straight alternative – "Hoover Factory" or "Watching The Detectives" – the latter, naturally, walking away with the decision. A little later, a lucky young lady brought out of the crowd successfully rung the bell playing the old fairground sledgehammer game. Her prize? Any track she wanted from the wheel (she chose "Accidents Will Happen").

The longer the marathon two and a half hour set went, the more likely Costello became to grab the wheel himself and steer it towards his favourites. He's certainly earned the right to make his own rules, and the crowd were rewarded by classics including "Shipbuilding," "Radio, Radio," "The Comedians" and "Everyday I Write The Book."

By the time Costello returned for a solo acoustic encore of "Jimmie Standing In The Rain," the pretence of the game show had seemingly been forgotten. The Imposters swaggered back on stage, which cued an avalanche of hits – "Alison," "(I Don't Want To Go To) Chelsea," Chuck Berry's "No Particular Place To Go" and "Pump It Up." During the onslaught Costello wandered back into the crowd and brought up his wife, Diana Krall, for a spin of the wheel, who in turn was offered the seat of the brilliant Steve Naïve on keyboards for the grand finale of "(What's So Funny ‘Bout) Peace, Love and Understanding."

Will the game show as rock concert catch on? Unlikely. Most musicians don't have the chops, the tracks or the sense of humour to carry it off. Elvis Costello, effortlessly cool, and comfortable enough in his adopted hometown to join his fans go-go dancing in the cage, had all three in spades.

Inspired lunacy, for sure. But still lunacy.