Elbow: build a rocket boys!

The basics
Elbow have spent the last few years experiencing the success they were always entitled to, but which seemed to elude them for so long. 
Ten years on from their debut, they are now firmly established as the nation’s favourite musical sons, able to underscore Guy Garvey’s lyrics with suitable evocative music. 
They’re about to launch this album with their first stadium tour, so the potential audience anticipating this album is massive.
The verdict
They have done nothing more than go back into the studio and make what is simply another excellent Elbow album, despite the pressure which they must have felt following the success of The Seldom Seen Kid. 
This is both what you would expect from Elbow, and also moves them to new levels of subtlety and musicality.  Deceptively simple arrangements and wonderful lyrics, it contains some haunting, moving pieces, such as The River, which even has an air of Brian Eno about it. 
The stand-out track, Lippy Kids, is about childhood, imploring us to realise ‘those days are golden’.  If it were possible to put a sepia-toned photograph into your head, this does it. 
One note for all the downloaders out there. I am sure the spacing and sequencing on the CD are meticulously planned and lovingly achieved.  The album is much more than a sum of its individual tracks, and the ebb and flow will be lost unless you hear these as they were intended, sweeping along in their majestic entirety.     
Out 7 March.
Mark Perkins


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