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Taken from NME (Mar 01, 2024)

Listen to Elbow's explosive new single 'Balu'

The band's 10th album 'Audio Vertigo' arrives later this month

by Tom Skinner

CREDIT: Matt Cardy/Getty
Guy Garvey performs live with Elbow. CREDIT: Matt Cardy/Getty

Elbow have shared a new single titled 'Balu' - you can listen to it below.

The gritty, synth-heavy track is the latest preview of the Manchester band's 10th studio album 'Audio Vertigo', which is due to arrive on March 22 via Polydor/Geffen (pre-order here).

It sees frontman Guy Garvey sing over an infectious groove and triumphant horns, with the song finding Elbow in a heavier, more explosive sonic space.

A description reads: '"Balu' shares much musical DNA with the wider album; a focus on rhythm, a willingness to experiment with new sounds, and a love of beats that reflects the freedom the band felt throughout the recording process."

The single is accompanied by an official video, which combines black-and-white footage of Garvey and co. performing live with some abstract clips of a mystery character in a mask. Tune in here:

'Balu' follows on from lead single 'Lovers' Leap', with Elbow having played that tune live on The Graham Norton Show in January.

Speaking to NME last October, Garvey described the forthcoming 'Audio Vertigo' as a "big fat record" that has "got some dirt under its fingernails for sure".

"It deals with some pretty inky stuff," the frontman explained. "There are a couple of wholesome tunes on there, but by and large there's everything from a maniacal rant from the point of view of a frontman who's lost his mind, to really awful portraits of toxic relationships failing - all set to a very thick, guitar, drum and groove-based thing."

He continued: "As always, it's produced by Craig Potter - who's getting more and more into his hip-hop - and Al our drummer has been writing more on this record. We all share a love of bands like The Meters, so it's kind of garage-y in a way with Vox organs and a lot of alt-American country sounds.

"It doesn't sound like anything that we've done before. There's everything from Stiff Records and what Elvis Costello was doing in his early years, right through to Afrika Bambaataa. We're wearing our influences a bit more proudly."

Elbow are set to embark on a UK and Ireland headline tour in May. Opening for the band will be The WAEVE, the duo made up of Blur's Graham Coxon and former Pipettes member-turned-Mark Ronson collaborator and singer-songwriter Rose Elinor Dougall.

You can see the full schedule, and find any remaining tickets here.




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