It’s a rare band that can give an intimate performance in front of 9,000 people…but Elbow have clearly mastered the skill.
Wandering across the stage in Birmingham, England, with a pint in his hand, suited Guy Garvey makes for a charming, cheeky host. Later in the show, he even pauses to pour cocktails for the front rows.
Though he claims to be knackered by the end of the second song, a blistering The Bones Of You, the portly frontman with the purest of voices, soldiers on. He seems encouraged, and claps with daft arm waving in a new song, With Love.
Backed by a string quartet, the lush orchestration captures all the subtle detail and atmosphere of the recorded versions.
In the song Weather To Fly, which one can only descible as simply beautiful, Guy asks the question, “Are we having the time of our lives?”
Elbow are one of those bands that you have to see. It just won’t be good enough to listen to the song on CD or computer. They are going to be talked about for years to come. They are the new Radiohead, but without having their heads up their arse in an annoying middle-class way.
Are we having the time of our life? Of course we fucking are.
by Wallace McTavish