Elbow The Seldom Seen Kid Album Review

Guy Garvey is to music what Oscar Wilde was to the literary world, a genius writer. Thats a pretty strong statement and some of my well read friends may take issue with such a comparison, but it’s one that i’m standing by. There are many similarities in the way this man pens a lyric to how some of the poetry greats structured their words.

I have listened to a LOT of this chap’s material over the past 20 years since the incredible and understated ‘Asleep In The Back’ landed and have found myself waiting like an excited kid for each new album to drop, just knowing every time that i was sure to be offered something completely fresh to the last time. Very few acts create that level of anticipation within me.

I would actually place Garvey in my own personal top 5 song writers of all time, plus i really like and admire him as person too which is always great when building an attachment to a band.

This album is a close to sheer perfection as i have ever found in a body of recorded music. Its not all about the songwriting talents within, it’s the entire package from the coming together of this amazing band through to the creation of some of the most beautifully choreographed harmonies and hooks ever laid down.

Every song on here is a complete masterpiece, it has ups and downs, mellow offerings, thundering crescendos, orchestral masterpieces, gritty monsters like ‘Grounds For Divorce’ and the complete and utter feel good epicness of tracks such as ‘One Day Like This’ which is one of those life-affirming tracks that make you feel like you can take on the world and is on a par with some of the great all time songs in history.

Some of the more pretentious music publications now pour a little scorn on The Seldom Seen Kid as they class it as ‘ mainstream’ possibly due to a flow of high profile TV license deals and heavyweight public exposure, so what? it doesn’t make the notes and words within this album any different, this still remains one of the finest, most beautifully written albums of the past 20 years, so in my own eloquent words – fuck them.

This man’s songs are almost too good, if that makes any sense. The mark of the perfect songwriter in my opinion is someone who provokes your thinking and encourages you to build a picture in your mind of the circumstances and places described within the songs, just like reading a book. Each time you go back to the perfect song or book you will discover something more than the last time you visited.

Songs that have the power to make you cry, thats the definition of a perfect album to me.

“Throw those curtains wide / One day like this a year would see me right”

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