You are hereAlbum Review: Elbow Jane - The Boldest Blood (Fellside)
Album Review: Elbow Jane - The Boldest Blood (Fellside)
Merseyside quintet Elbow Jane return to Fellside for the follow up to 3-SIDE ISLAND, which helped the band gain the reputation they thoroughly deserve. With live appearances that reveal a band that resembles a bunch of favourite cousins returning from their travels to entertain the whole family, young and old, with infectious personalities, cheeky but clean humour and more importantly, great songs, the band's tight sound once again transfers well onto disc, with the help of Fellside's Paul Adams. The worst jibe this reviewer ever heard about Elbow Jane is that they're 'just a boy band.' Well Merseyside has produced good boy bands since the 1960s and I don't recall that being a bad thing.
With a rich acoustic sound incorporating mandolins and bouzoukis with the usual complement of guitars and keyboards, Elbow Jane have a further trump card in Richard Woods' instantly recognisable voice. Rich could quite easily have a successful solo career if he was daft enough to leave this band. The majority of the songs are written by Woods, either solo or in partnership with keyboard player Kev Byrne. The band also boasts Joe Topping, another of the band's songwriters, recently awarded as Acoustic Magazine's 'Songwriter of the Year', who provides the title song here as well as the beautiful Not That Hard To Find and country ballad Throw Me To the Wind.
With a dozen new songs THE BOLDEST BLOOD is an instantly accessible album with equal attention paid to the vocal harmonies as well as the clear acoustic instrumentation. The alternating lead vocal duties keeps the listener engaged throughout, with literate stories borrowed from Greek fables for instance, using as a metaphor the story of Icarus to indicate our inevitable return to earth once we've reached our respective heights in Ode To Icarus (Falling From the Skies), to Kahil Gibran's The Prophet with Hand of Life, written jointly by Woods and Byrne.
With a handsomely bound sleeve, together with 12 page booklet complete with handwritten lyrics and sleeve notes as well as the optimistic official slogan 'Keep Calm and Carry On', Elbow Jane are equipped with something special to accompany them on their forthcoming tour. Catch them if you can.