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The Take Off and Landing of Everything

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Six albums into a storied career, Elbow has won a Mercury Prize, sold out arenas, and become one of the UK's biggest groups with an elegiac brand of atmospheric rock, influenced in equal parts by prog-rock and pub-wisdom. On The Take Off and Landing of Everything, they confront every rock band's biggest challenge: getting older. "Mother forgive me, I still want a bottle of good Irish whiskey / and a bundle of smokes in my grave," sings Guy Garvey, who turned 40 just days before the album's release, confronting middle age with characteristic panache. Mellifluous and restrained, Take Off doesn't attempt to recreate the grandeur of the Mercury Prize-winning The Seldom Seen Kid, opting instead for songs like "New York Morning," a somber tune with drums and keys that gradually build from a quiet early dawn to a majestic thrum. "Honey Sun" is a smoldering mid-tempo track, featuring harmonies as warm as a cup of tea, while "My Sad Captains" wistfully celebrates Garvey’s hard-partying buddies: "Another sunrise with my sad captains / with whom I choose to lose my mind."

Customer Reviews

A Bit Sneakier an Elbow Album

Usually it takes at least four, maybe five listens for an Elbow album to truly reveal it's beauty and intimate secrets. Initially, I though this was a departure: a more initially accessible record, but a bit of a disappointment. But I gave it the proper four listens, and low and behold, though perhaps more traditional in song structure and filled more with hooks than surprising tones, this is very much another fine red wine of a record. Let it breathe and you will be rewarded with complexity, albeit a bit more smooth than previous vintages.


Can't wait til this album comes out. The two songs that already came out are amazing.

Best of 2014 (so far)

Mellow. Poetic. Gorgeous. One of Elbow's best and, so far, the best album of 2014.


Formed: 1997 in Manchester, England

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Injecting a wider range of emotions into their music than most of their guitar-based British peers, Elbow have been known to refer to their grandiose orchestral sound as "prog without the solos." The members of the band -- vocalist Guy Garvey, drummer Richard Jupp, organist Craig Potter, guitarist Mark Potter, and bassist Pete Turner -- met during the early '90s while attending college in Bury. After moving several miles south to Manchester proper, the band went through a couple of developmental...
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The Take Off and Landing of Everything, Elbow
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