Elbow's Guy Garvey: "Writing a theme tune to accompany images with which everyone is familiar is something that Elbow find simpler than writing songs for a new album. The Olympic Games is about the coming together of people to celebrate our best athletes and it was as important to have a sympathetic theme for the losers as it was for the winners...
The song's about putting your hopes in someone, the physical aspect of human endeavour and pushing yourself to do something you couldn't do before.
"We wanted to do something quite traditional-sounding with a big gospel choir and a philharmonic orchestra. We knew it would have to have some gladiatorial elements; that it would need to be fierce. It also had to be the biggest piece of music we could create, yet be written in such a way that you could strip it down into different elements for use over different kinds of footage.
I knew I wanted to get my ego out of the way, so I told them that I wasn't going to sing on it. It's not an Elbow song; it's an Olympics theme song and it has to sound like it belongs to everybody. I think having the gospel choir on there helps give it that "everyman" feel.
What we've ended up with is hopefully quite an emotional piece of music. It lasts for about six and a half minutes, but you'll probably only hear a minute or two of it at any one time."