Friday, April 1

Album Of Last Month

Elbow 'Build a Rocket Boys!' (Fiction/Polydor)

Elbow may have detected some added pressure assembling fifth album 'Build a Rocket Boys!'. But if securing 2009's Mercury Prize did have any mastery over their practice, the North Manchester five-piece only appear to have prospered under it. Their rich, unshackling babel is felt from beginning to end, with a now-at-peace Guy Garvey having to dig deep to come by his blues - no right-minded Elbow devotee wants to hear about the sun's rays, anyhow. An eight-minute intro that actually feels like four precedes the anti-media-anti-hoody 'Lippy Kids', the handsomest moment on here. 'Jesus Is a Rochdale Girl' is Garvey in classic flashback-mode, while the pensiveness of 'Dear Friends' cuts it home like warm cherry pie. Really, nobody does it better.

Best Track
'Lippy Kids'