Just like you, but different
2008 – Elbow – The Seldom Seen Kid
This was their 4th Album, and the first one I listened to, and if I remember one that I played on an almost endless repeat when I was doing some tedious and long work in the garage, more exactly , sanding back a table for re-varninshing, hot dusty musty tedious work.
This is an album of music where the lyrics display an absolutely mastery of story telling, and it’s backed by music that is accomplished and well polished.
An Album of 54 minutes give or take and usually 11 Tracks
Seems like every time I listen I pick out a new phrase and a different track that hits the resonate button.
I think this time around that this particular bit grabs me;
A friend of mine grows his very own brambles
They twist all around him ’til he can’t move
Beautiful, quivering, chivalrous shambles
What is my friend trying to prove?
And then come around to the March 2012 MrsPdubyah and me, well we see them live at the Powerstation a venue in Auckland that holds about 900 people. It was a magnificent gig, and they were supported by an Australian band “Bear and Boy” who were also quite good and had a couple of catchy tracks and some great arrangement of musics going on.
I like Elbow so much that I imported a box set of theirs from the UK that had all there previous albums in it. Madness then and on reflection madness still, but it has a great collection of music that are by-and-large well crafted and eloquent, romantic and sad as well as uplifting and happy. Skilfully sung too.
There are two version of this album, the studio one and the abbey road one, they are both equally as impressive, and as with a lot of modern bands the live version sounds a lot like the studio version, possibly to do with the money made by touring as opposed to album sales and you have to sell what you sound like.
It’s a great night in, although the problem I have with the album is that they are pressed as doubles and that means a lot more flipping and swapping, that and they play at 45 and not 33, it’s a small price to pay for enjoyment, but it could have been better.
is a Garage Project – Lupus the Wolf Man a 9.5% Double/Imperial IPA in a 650ml bottle. I’ve had this on tap and it was magnificent then.
Brewed for a Beer Festival they’ve found the occasion to make this again, which suits me fine.
What a glorious aroma from this, and it pours pretty as a picture and sits in the glass with a lovely stark white head of foam, and it’s so inviting. Dark hazy orange inviting.
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American Dark Lager
American Pale Ale
American Strong Ale
Belgian Strong Ale
Belgian Style Wit
Belgian White Witbier
Bière de Champagne / Bière Brut
Bière de Garde
Dunkel / Munich Lager
English Pale Ale
English Strong Ale
Flanders Red Ale
Golden Ale/Blond Ale
IPA – India Pale Ale
NZ Pale Ale
Russian Imperial Stout
Strong Pale Lager/Imperial Pils
New Zealand Beer
The first time I listened to The Seldom Seen Kid I wasn’t sure that I liked it. I mean, it was nice, but it didn’t seem wild and adventurous like Cast of Thousands did. (CoT was my first Elbow album, bought blind on the strength of a review in Q or Mojo.)
I took the album with me to work and listened to it through my headphones. (My office is a cubicle farm and, until six months ago, I worked in a cubicle. Headphones were necessary to be polite to others.) It ran in the background as I wrote. It was the second or third time through that I reached a mental break moment in my writing, and it just so happened that the song playing was “The Loneliness of a Tower Crane Driver.” I listened to it — “This is interesting,” I thought — and I felt the overwhelming sense of despair in the song. Then it hit the moment where the texture of the song changes, a moment of hope, and it felt as though the sun had come out. I wept.
The Seldom Seen Kid may not be Elbow’s best album in my estimation (depending on my mood, I’d rank it third at worst), but it’s probably their most accessible.
Indeed, there are better albums and there are much better lyrics and songs, some of them maudlin and some uplifting, this was a really good entry into enjoying their whole range.