Listen to Elbow’s experimental new single ‘Empires’

Fans will have heard the song at recent live shows

Elbow have shared another new single from their upcoming new album ‘Giants Of All Sizes’ – listen to ‘Empires’ below.

The Guy Garvey-fronted group will return with their eighth record, which follows on from 2017’s ‘Little Fictions’, on October 11. With the project being teased via social media and a billboard campaign, first track ‘Dexter & Sinister’ arrived at the top of this month.

Elbow have now offered another taste of the LP in the form of the darker-edged ‘Empires’, having offered a glimpse of it back in May. “Baby/ Empires crumble all the time/ Pay it no mind/ You just happened to witness mine,” croons Garvey in the first verse over bursts of distorted organ. Later he sings of “a bland unremarkable typical Tuesday“.


“We thought the studio would give us inner-city vibes but we were on the edge of Hamburg which meant we spent more time in Clouds Hill [Studios] rather than exploring,” says producer and keyboardist Craig Potter on how Elbow’s recording location affected the new cut’s sound.

“With time to spare, we sat around and played together in a way we haven’t for a long time and experimented and improvised with the music which led to the looser feel you hear on ‘Empires’”.

The single is accompanied by an official black and white lyric video, which continues the theme of ‘Giants Of All Sizes’.

elbow new video guy garvey
Elbow’s Guy Garvey. Credit: Getty

Speaking previously to NME about the album, singer Garvey said: “A lot about this record is different. We started recording in a new city, in Hamburg, we changed the way we worked and we all decided from the off to let the songs take the lead, without compromising the vision of each tune.


“At times, it’s a bleak record, but it has a huge, if bruised, heart. It was a pleasure to make and we are all immensely proud of it.”

As well as ‘Dexter & Sinister’ and ‘Empires’, LP 8 will feature ‘Seven Veils’, ‘The Delayed 3:15’, ‘White Noise White Heat’, ‘Doldrums’ and more across its nine tracks. 

A previous press release said the project “lyrically takes in moments of deep personal loss, whilst reflecting its times by confronting head-on the spectres of injustice and division not just in the UK but across the world.”