Elbow Asleep In The Back (Ogv)
Spin: 6 out of 10 - "...the expansive, leisurely songs...swoon nicely. And they've all got splendid little moments..."
Vinyl LP Details
- Number of Records: 2
- Released: January 8, 2021
- Originally Released: 2020
- Label: Polydor / Umgd
Spin - 3/02, pp.127-1286 out of 10 - "...the expansive, leisurely songs...swoon nicely. And they've all got splendid little moments..."
Entertainment Weekly - 3/29/02, pp.71-72"...a full hour of dense, moody gloss..." - Rating: B-
Uncut4 stars out of 5 -- "[I]t's a more introspective showing of their psychedelic northern soul than subsequent LPs..."
Alternative Press - 3/02, pp.76-78 out of 10 - "...A severely affected and emotionally overloaded debut that rocks, moans, emotes, shivers, blares, confounds and (mildly) innovates..."
Magnet - 12-1/02, p.83"...Really progressive music....succeeding in its ambition to create complex rock and making it interesting..."
Q (Magazine) - p.1364 stars out of 5 -- "[V]arious shades of blue are examined in mysterious sound paintings where strings, beats, brass, organ and harmonies hover in the mist."
Mojo (Publisher) - 1/02, p.71Ranked #36 in Mojo's "Best  Albums of 2001".
NME (Magazine) - 12/29/01, p.59Ranked #12 in NME's 50 "Albums Of the Year 2001".
Pitchfork (Website) - "So much about the gorgeous title track sneaks up on you -- a whistling organ drone breezes easily through the mix, woodwinds seep into the guitar waltz like ink into water, and when the trumpets herald its hopeful finale, it feels earned."
Record Collector (magazine) - p.933 stars out of 5 -- "Songs such as 'Powder Blue' and 'New Born' have lost none of their impact, Guy Garvey's lyrics and vocals genuinely affecting..."
Elbow: Guy Garvey (vocals, acoustic & electric guitars, harmonica, synthesizer, percussion, sound effects); Mark Potter (acoustic & electric guitars, background vocals); Craig Potter (piano, organ, synthesizer, background vocals); Pete Turner (synthesizer, bass, background vocals).
Additional personnel includes: Ian Burdge (cello); Francoise Lemoignan (saxophone); Bob Sastri, Nick Coen (brass); Danny Evans (percussion, loops); Ben Hillier (percussion, background vocals).
Producers: Danny Evans, Elbow, Ben Hillier, Steve Osborne.
Engineers include: Danny Evans, Steve Lloyd, Danton Supple.
England's Elbow has been labeled as nouveau prog-rock, but Pink Floyd rarely sounded this radio-friendly. With tracks built on soaring vocals, shimmering guitars, spooky strings, and trance-inducing beats, the group falls more accurately between morose modern balladeers such as Coldplay and Travis and experimental sonic soldiers like Radiohead and early Genesis. They've described their sound as "prog without the solos," which also doesn't do justice to their full-length debut, ASLEEP IN THE BACK, by half.
The album is a subtly shifting series of dreamy pop songs with emotionally tortured lyrics. With a voice that veers between the keening falsettos of Radiohead's Thom Yorke and Dave Matthews' raspier end, Garvey mostly hovers over the album's skeletal, floating arrangements. He almost gets lost in the swell of "Newborn," while achieving a hypnotizing strength with the double- and triple-tracked vocals of "Any Day Now," and nearly whispering himself out of the picture on the Floydian "Bitten by the Tailfly." Most of the arrangements hover around the mid-tempo range and the group is not afraid to stretch well past the five-minute mark, allowing the songs to slowly unfold at their leisure.
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