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Elbow Take a Break


Elbow’s latest album isn’t really an album, but a collection – specifically one of Elbow B-sides and rare, non-album tracks. Taking a sly turn on words from their debut album, Asleep in the Back, the English alt-rock band dubbed the set Dead in the Boot, and it’s already turned into a fan favourite for its more chill vibe;  frontman Guy Garvey calls it Elbow’s “late-night” album.

But fans are still wondering when Elbow will drop their next full-length studio set, even though their last one wasn’t really so long ago (2011’s Build a Rocket Boys!)

According to Elbow’s bassist, Pete Turner, new tracks will be along relatively soon – if you consider at least half a year “soon.” Most of the songs for a new Elbow album are reportedly in the can, even if the band doesn’t plan to set them free for a while yet.

“We spent the past year in the studio in-between festivals and our mammoth touring schedule,” Turner explains, “with Craig (Potter, the band’s resident piano/keyboard guru) at the helm. The bulk of the album is done.”

So, for a while at least, are Elbow’s live performances. After, as Turner said, an extremely busy 2012, including an arena tour last November and December, the whole band is taking a hiatus (we didn’t say a breakup – we said a break – no panicking, please), with Garvey heading to New York City for a half-year to work with Massive Attack’s Robert Del Naja on writing songs for a new stage musical adaptation of King Kong.

Turner, meanwhile, has something far more mellow in mind.

“My New Year’s resolution was to spend three months in Thailand, playing in the sea and seeking inspiration for my bass playing,” he grins.

He’ll be well practised for when the band returns, then, although whether that will be summer or later is anyone’s guess.

“I love touring,” he says, “all the shows were special, as I knew they’d be the last for a while. So I felt I had to really make the most of it, and believe me, I did.”

And as for any sneak listens of the new album, you may just have to rely on the internet, where fan footage of one of the band’s new songs has been floating around. It’s rare for Elbow to road-test anything before it’s officially on tape, though, so it might be a little tricky to find.

“There’s a song we played live during the last tour, that at the moment is called “Charge,”” Turner explains. “It’s the first time we’ve tried a song out before its release, so that was fun. It’s got a great response, too – but it’s still very open to change, so the version people heard is not necessarily how it will sound.”