Belle & Sebastian have been at the top of my â€œI need to look into these artists right nowâ€ list for â€¦ years. Knowing the band has seven studio albums and multiple EPâ€™s, the task is a daunting one.
Since Iâ€™m a giant music snob (hey, at least I can admit it) I try to listen to an artistâ€™s entire discography â€“â€“ in order of release â€“â€“ to get the best grasp on where they started and where they are now.
When Belle & Sebastian released their eighth album â€œWrite About Loveâ€ in October, I swallowed my music-nerd pride and gave it a listen.
I might not have any idea where these guys come from, but I absolutely love where they have gone.
The 11 track album starts out with a poppy drum and piano beat as female vocalist and violinist Sarah Martin sings in a wispy, 1980s style reminiscent of a tune youâ€™d hear off â€œThe Breakfast Clubâ€ soundtrack.
The second song breaks into a dancy, upbeat synthesizer and snare, driven by Stuart Lee Murdochâ€™s Scottish voice. His lyrics are funky and bold: â€œAnd itâ€™s fun, thinking of you like a move star. And itâ€™s dumb thinking of you like the way that you were.â€
Norah Jones makes a guest appearance in the beautiful duet â€œLittle Lou, Ugly Jack, Prophet John.â€ Her unique voice is instantly recognizable as she croons, â€œYeah youâ€™re great, youâ€™re just part of this lifetime of dreaming, that extends to the heart of this long summer feeling.â€
The whole album sounds like a soundtrack to a really rad 1980s prom. They rock both the hoppy dance tunes and the bubbly slow jams. Feel free to awkwardly sway back-and-fourth with your seventh grade crush while listening; it would be completely appropriate.
Music reviewer Michael Elizabeth Sakas can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.