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The last album was beautifully enhanced with the Halle Youth Choir in a way that was organic and not at all gimmicky; thoughtful and well composed and subtly produced. Translated well to the live stage too.

This latest album is pointed and enhanced with very original use (in popular music context) of woodwinds and brass - I didn't want to title my review with windy goodness in case it's taken the wrong way :D

The 4 stars rather than 5 is because it has the warm blanket of familiarity of all things Elbow, so it doesn't sound earth shattering musically (although the lyrics are as always astoundingly insightful and often moving) - it does however grow on you with subtle detail of instrumentation and clever accompaniment.

This review will probably be updated with further listening, since Elbow's multilayered sound world changes perception everytime you hear it.
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on 28 May 2014
This release is the pinnacle of Elbow's work so far, in my opinion. There are no glaringly obvious anthemic sing-alongs, simply a stunning coherent CD of songs with real feeling, empathy and a warm humanity sadly lacking in most of today's music.

I do hope that they continue with Craig Potter as producer because I wouldn't want any outside influences ruining this evolution of the band as a tight knit unit.

A real grower, as all Elbow releases are, and a contender for album of 2015. Special mention to Guy Garvey for his lyrics, which continue to be pure poetry. A must buy.
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on 12 March 2016
After my son bought me the live album which was a surprise as I've not really shown in an interest in this band. But enjoyed that album. So after sampling a few tracks of this album I decided I would buy it . It certainly does grow on you and a great album for a long car journey. Quite mellow in places . I agree with other comments that this album does creep up on you . I would certainly recommend purchasing this for the price. Even if it was full price I still would buy it. Don't let the knock down price put you off , like it almost did me. Try it.!
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on 9 May 2017
Excellent album very chilling and relaxing !! Always a pleasure to listen to in car, home or in the garden.
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on 2 May 2016
Played and played till we decided to restrict its use. Haunting melodies and words sung with expressive vocals
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on 27 March 2017
Excellent very pleased
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on 4 July 2017
It is what it is
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on 28 February 2015
Great service,not a bad cd,cant complain.
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on 26 April 2017
Another quality album from the mighty Elbow
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on 10 May 2014
I have never been an almighty Elbow fan, having dipped into their output only occasionally. And liking to a degree, but not in a repeat listener way. On dipping into this album I found myself thinking at first that is sounded samey and how it would be unlikely to be one I’d eagerly reach for.

However, a rare thing happened; whereby after a couple of casual non committed listens during a long commute - typically because I couldn’t decide on anything else to play – I noticed the songs becoming familiar and all of a sudden I was getting drawn into the lyrics, and the real core of the melodies. It all just seems to work. The songs theme seems to work more as a whole rather than as individual entities, bringing a surprising clarity to the messages and musings.

It continued to draw me further in, no longer was I dipping in – this album had rooted itself into my psyche. The melodies meander with the occasional darkly crafted words expertly interweaved and expressed by a unique and perfect vocal. The rhythm and production simply works.

Now I am finding myself experimenting with their back catalogue to see if a similar experience might be had.
Elbow are a bit of an enigma perhaps, but they are powerful, poignant and poetic; the lyrics take on vivid personal slants – or maybe that’s just a middle aged thing.

To conclude, this is highly recommended for thoughtful persons who have a little patience to see if they can evoke a similar experience as described.

This is an excellent album.
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