Ed Harcourt: The Beautiful Lie

This is Harcourt s fifth album in six years – an incredible achievement by modern standards – and happily he seems to be getting better with each clutch of songs. Returning to his gran s home to record the album on her ancient piano, drum kit crammed in t

This is Harcourt's fifth album in six years - an incredible achievement by modern standards - and happily he seems to be getting better with each clutch of songs.

Returning to his gran's home to record the album on her ancient piano, drum kit crammed in the hallway, the album sounds both sharp and creaky.

An ethereal warmth spills out of opener Whirlwind In D Minor, while highlights You Only Call Me When You're Drunk and Scatterbraine are a portentous descent into string-drenched cacophony and brilliantly fashioned circus-act lark respectively.

Ed is already an underground English marvel, but this could just propel him towards the wider recognition he deserves. 4/5

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