Like the first cigarette of the day

A lot of things are currently rubbish - personal, political, sports - but the last couple of weeks have seen the release of a few great, great new records by bands whom I love. Let's begin with Manchester's most handsome sons, Elbow, whose new album 'The Seldom Seen Kid' came out last week, and made top 5 in the UK.

My pattern for listening to Elbow records is to just soak them in a few times, and then remembering key lyrics and phrases and quickly falling in love. It's happened four times in a row. Perhaps you've heard the rumbling bar-brawl of 'Grounds for Divorce' already. That's at the loudest end of the album - contrast with 'An Audience with the Pope' or 'The Fix', featuring Richard Hawley. Or 'Mirrorball', even prettier still, with the lyric "we kissed like we invented it" and swirling strings. Or 'Starlings', with huge bursts of brass, and "you are the only thing in any room you're ever in". 'One Day Like This' could potentially be a huge summer hit, with "it's looking like a beautiful day" and more strings.

In the middle of the record is 'Weather to Fly', a story-so-far, which joins the pantheon of incredible Elbow songs that'd probably make me cry if I saw them live. 'Scattered Black and Whites' has done it in the past. It'll knock you on your ass, it's so good.

Damn, I love this band.

[download Elbow - The Bones of You]

[elbow official site / myspace]
[buy 'the seldom seen kid' uk / preorder us]


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