• Record Label: V2
  • Release Date: Jan 27, 2004
User Score
9.1

Universal acclaim- based on 34 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 32 out of 34
  2. Negative: 1 out of 34

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  1. Dec 12, 2011
    8
    High quality throughout. Some of this sounds almost religous (in a good way). This is the record that should have made them hit the big time rather than what came after. Along with The Seldom Seen Kid, this is their best album
  2. BenJ
    Sep 10, 2003
    8
    Marvellous - it improves with every play and builds on their equally good debut record.
  3. BennyP
    Jun 5, 2004
    10
    My album of 2003. Hugely inventive, emotional and engaging.
  4. RB
    Aug 20, 2003
    10
    Fantastic. One of the albums you can listen to over and over. The mark of a superb band is a great 2nd album. Elbow has proven that it is a superb band with this effort.
  5. CraigC
    Jan 14, 2004
    10
    i bought this cd when it was released in europe at the end of summer 03, i'm still listening to it. haunting.
  6. bolob
    Jan 19, 2004
    10
    This is truly a masterpiece in an era with too few of them. Thoughtful, accessible, hopeful music. Doesn't sacrifice hooky musical technique to compose beautiful poetry. One day this alb will be compared to Ok Computer as a genre- definer..... quite happy that most reviewers missed its significance.
  7. PaulM
    Sep 4, 2005
    9
    A stunning achievement. The music is deeply textured and rewards repeated listens repeatedly. The lyrics are gorgeous, at times poetic almost - example from 'Switching Off' - 'Last of the men in hats hops off the coil, And a final scene unfolds inside, Deep in the rain of sparks behind his brow , Is a part replayed from a perfect day'. Wow
  8. Oli
    Oct 9, 2003
    10
    an amazing piece of music! "cast..." event tops their magnificient debut!
  9. GeoffG
    Aug 19, 2003
    10
    Fantastic second offering. Exactly the progression I had hoped for from Elbow. Defenleity on my Top 10 of the year already!
  10. RobertA
    Jan 26, 2004
    9
    music that will make you shiver with delight. great.
  11. Shane
    Feb 2, 2004
    10
    This is the album of the millennium right now.
  12. MrMikey
    Aug 24, 2004
    9
    My heart still lies with Asleep in the Back I suppose but the band have moved on from the dark of Bury which is all through the first album. As the band were taken into the wide world they lightened up, after all they finally made the escape that was haunting their first album. Worldly wise and a little happier. Anyone know where the 3rd album will go? Becasue I don't have a clue.
  13. musicman
    May 25, 2005
    10
    Everything about this album is beautiful
  14. seattleman
    Oct 21, 2003
    5
    The singer has a huge ego about there music ....the notable musicians are the drummer and guitar player whom which you could tell had many earlier experiences with music.....
  15. JoshE.
    Jun 7, 2008
    10
    A beautiful record from start to finish. This should have made them huge. Too bad for all of those who are missing it.
  16. AllanN
    Oct 25, 2006
    10
    Lush, complex, emotionally charged collection of outstanding tracks. In my view, this is the best album in the past few years.
  17. MikeP
    Jul 11, 2007
    10
    One of the best ever.
Metascore
84

Universal acclaim - based on 23 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 23 out of 23
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 23
  3. Negative: 0 out of 23
  1. 90
    It's human where Radiohead are impenetrable, but complex where Coldplay are banal.... Elbow remain unquantifiably great. [Sep 2003, p.100]
  2. The song-structures possess Radiohead's abstract bent, but maintain Coldplay's engaging audience connectivity.
  3. It's a grower - no doubt about that.