Saturday, July 30, 2011

Live Review: elbow @ The Enmore Theatre 29/07/2011

Possessed of one of the most beautiful singing voices, Guy Garvey, potential poet laureate, lead singer and frontman of elbow believes Sydney has beautiful fingers.
Don't ask, you had to be there.
Fact is, judging from the crowd's response, some of those fingers were Mancunian.

elbow is not your typical rock band.  Shorn of the typical rock star egos and posturing, they are instead humble to the point of having their name in lower case.  So humble, that Guy suggested one day they would like to support their opening act, Matt Corby.  That's perhaps s-t-r-e-t-c-h-i-n-g it.

Guy's humble demeanor makes an elbow concert feel like one in which you're amongst friends.  He often pointed and gestured to acknowledge almost every individual in the crowd and when he had us going, hands were either aloft and waving, clapping to the beat or punching in the air.

Audience particpation was high on the agenda tonight as he began teaching us a song line by line until it became too long to follow but also ended as a joke!  The whistling parts in Lippy Kids were turned into a call-and-response, but he was good humoured enough and acquiesced to the audience' cheeky out-of-tune whistling.  Further rapport was forged when Guy descended from stage to shake some hands.

At one point, yours truly was moved to tears by the sheer beauty of a song.

Celebrating 20 years in the business, but only ten with a recording contract and five stupendous albums to show, there was a round of drinks on stage as the crowd appropriately sang Happy Birthday to the band.

It's criminal that they remain largely a well kept secret despite winning the below accolades:
  • The 2009 Brit Award for Best British Band
  • Two Ivor Novello awards
  • The South Bank Show Pop award
  • The NME Outstanding Contribution to British Music award, and
  • The Mojo Magazine Song of the Year 2009 for One Day Like This
  • The Mercury Music Prize for 'The Seldom Seen Kid in 2008
  • The Mercury Music Prize nomination for Build a Rocket Boys! in 2011
It's possible they're too British for an American audience, but I love them all the more for it.

When asked what he should sing, Ralphie (Sp?) from the audience suggested Hallelujah and for a moment there, we thought we were in for a treat.  In all likelihood, they're probably brushing up on the lyrics for their next live performance.

Perhaps they could play the Sydney Opera House next?

Syd.  8.9/10

PS.  Sorry that there are no accompanying photos - They were all lost after an iPod update!
        Modern technology, right?

Many thanks to Carina N, we now have the setlist:

(Could've sworn they also included
An Audience with the Pope)

This now concludes my week of exhaustive debauched concert-going and soul-feeding.


  1. In regards to your Elbow set-list request ... I managed to acquire one from the Enmore Theatre show so here you go -

  2. Thank you very much for this. Cheers!