Tuesday, September 9, 2008

E is For Elbow ... and for EEEbahgum, they've dunnit!

Elbow win this year's Mercury Album Prize . . . bless 'em. I'm off to the fridge to get a drink and celebrate.


Blimpy said...


Damn good band, so I don't begrudge the fact that they beat Laura Marling (for a moment there i thought she could do it!)

snadfrod said...

I've just got a drink for Elbow, too. A small, Tesco, biere d'or. God bless 'em I am so happy and, as they say in Manchester, they'll be dancing in the piss-stained corners of Big Hands tonight!

Roll on me and mrs frod at the Appollo on the 23rd of October, that's all I'm sayin'. It is going to be emotional. Get. In!!

ToffeeBoy said...

I'll crack open a late bottle of ginger beer in celebration - and make a promise to get hold of the latest album at the earliest possible opportunity.

Favourite Elbow track?
Powder Blue?
Grace Under Pressure?

snadfrod said...

Top five, without any order placed on them at this point -

Powder Blue
Bitten by the Tailfly
Station Approach
One Day Like This
Switching Off/Snooks (can't decide)

I think Station Approach edges it, for purely Manc reasons. Its the name of the street that leads up to Piccadilly Station and the time that I put it on, walking down there, the first time I was back in Manchester after the album's release was, to say the least, special.

GarethI said...

Now, there's a question. Grace Under Pressure would have been great for the sweary songs list, with that closing chorus of "We still believe in love, so fuck you". Elbow had a choir with them at Meltdown this year, and at that point, all the mini Guy Garveys gave the audience the finger. We pissed ourselves laughing, and gave them the finger back. So THEY all started laughing. It makes me smile just thinking about it.

Plus, Guy Garvey is a fine songwriter. "We kissed like we invented it" is the sort of concentrated truth that, for one thing, seems so obvious that you think "why haven't I heard that before?", and for another, you could write in French and people would grasp it.

Puncture Repair might be my choice, although (like Snadfrod, but for different reasons) Station Approach is up there. PR is a heartfelt, understated thank you from Garvey to his friends – "The cavalry with tea and sympathy" – for being there when he needed them.

Shoegazer said...

"Fugitive Motel" but will change my mind again tomorrow.

DarceysDad said...

Again, I can't get past Scattered Black And Whites as a favourite, simply because of the emotional connection singing along to it softly and repeatedly to DarceysSis at 3am when she was an insomniac infant.

Donds to Grace Under Pressure's Glasto refrain.

Newborn is still up there, probably for the same reasons as SB&Ws.

Grounds For Divorce was my instant fave off Seldom Seen Kid, but is getting a little too ubiquitous now.

Switching Off and Fugitive Motel make up my current Top 5, but as others have said, that'll change tomorrow!

DarceysDad said...

@ Gareth - Oh I *REALLY* tried to get Grace in the Sweary Songs Ten, and from memory introduced ejay to it as a direct result. Ed??

ejaydee said...

Yes, I remember listening an Elbow song thanks to you, believe it was a live version, or at least the youtube clip was. I never looked further into it, even though I liked it. I usually need 2 or 3 instances to get into a new band.

TracyK said...

My favourite Elbow track:

CaroleBristol said...

I don't think that I have ever heard Elbow.

I have to admit to a blind spot when it comes to a lot of recent bands. The ones I have heard, Arctic Monkeys, Kaiser Chiefs, Franz Ferdinand, Bloc Party, Razorlight etc, I don't like - they all sound like copies of something else - and it has made me not want to hear any more of them.

I know it is a failing on my part but these bands simply don't move me and I lack the urge to explore any of them.

I have to admit that I have never heard Babyshambles either. I think musically, I have just taken a different direction.

GarethI said...

I'm not sure that's a failure, CB. I suspect there's a difference between whether something is good or not (which is a technical judgment) and whether you like it or not (which is usually what people mean when they say "the best" - what they mean is, "my favourite", and that's something different).

DsD - Good work, I fucking missed that one. The backing vocalists on that include Cathy Davey (whose first album Garvey produced, and her second won the Irish equivalent of the Mercury this year) and Guy's brother - Marcus. I thought he was taking the piss, and didn't sing along, until I looked at the sleevenotes and saw MG had a credit...

snadfrod said...

GarethI: doesn't it also have all of Alfie and I Am Kloot as a kind of massive middle-ranking Manchester Indie Mafia?

CB: on Babyshambles, I also think you may have been lucky...

GarethI said...

Snadfrod, the listed backing vocalists are:
The London Community Gospel Choir (bet THAT made a change from Gladly My Cross-eyed Bear)
Jimi Goodwin
Alfie (Guy did make a comment at the birthday gig about the previous time they'd played London, Alfie were the support and sang GUP on stage, but they'd been chewed up and spat out by the music industry)
Marcus Garvey
Beckie Garvey
Gina Garvey
Cathy Davey
The crowd at Glastonbury 2002

No mention of I Am Kloot, but Guy did produce their first album. He joined them at the Electric Ballroom a couple of years ago to perform To You.

snadfrod said...

Gareth: you're absolutely right. Doves not Kloot. So a bit more of a high-ranking mafia...

Favourite Elbow lyric, anyone? I'll plump for either

"I'm proud to be the one you hold, when the shakes begin" from Powder Blue


"So (gentle shoulder charge) love you mate" from Friend of Mine. Masculinity in a nutshell. Tears, I tells ya.

CB said...

What made me smile was the joy with which they received the award. No macho bullshit or posturing. Just a real shared delight which endeared them to me. It is my first Elbow album after buying it in June when Stuart MaConie played a couple of tracks on the Saturday afternoon show I think. I saw them on TV with Richard Hawley a while ago. My two current favourites together. Am I turning Manky?

Proudfoot said...

I like "The streets are full of goths and Greeks/I haven't seen my mum for weeks". Not their best album IMHO, and beginning to wonder if this was a recognition award for sterling service in the past - a bit like awarding William Golding lit prizes for later works rather than Lord of the Flies.