Archive for the ‘Belle and Sebastian’ Category

Like Dylan in the movies – Belle and Sebastian

That documentary has really sent me back to them. I’ve watched it twice now, which i’m sure is no record. I’ll watch it again before the trend around it drops, and many times after that as time rolls on. I’ve listened to their music more, especially If You’re Feeling Sinister, which i’ve never considered their best but now i’ve been told it is it might have grown on me that requisite bit extra. But if they wanted albums without singles, or didn’t want to release singles from albums, then they shouldn’t have made such obviously standout tracks on their albums. And then released promotion videos for them. And had them as the first Belle and Sebastian song many people would hear, making them special and elevating them forever above all others. The songs, i mean.

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Seeing other people – Belle and Sebastian

I start back again at university today. One day i’ll make it somewhere good and figure everything of this mess of a life out, but until then i’ll have to suffer another year looking like the most should-be-through-with-this-by-now person on campus. Everyone’s so darn young, attractive and with it, no doubt with newer, cooler formative indie touchstones than Belle and Sebastian. This is history. A relic. Everything it made me and everything it shone on and made me feel i could be is a relic with it. Ugh why do you have to go out into this world to get anywhere in it?

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Get me away from here, i’m dying – Belle and Sebastian

Pitchfork Media did one of their rare decent things a few days ago. I guess with casting their nets as wide as they do and having the manpower they have something is bound to stick eventually. What stuck is an hour long retrospective documentary on If You’re Feeling Sinister. Nicely done interviews with everyone in the band at that time just looking back at that time and these songs, that’s all. It doesn’t tell anything you might not already know, but the documentary works walking a line of nostalgia irremediable from this album, this time and the band who made and lived through it, completely indebted to and aided by the mountains of super 8 footage and photographs Stuart and others shot at the time.

Of course Pitchfork can’t help themselves in presenting it to us. i.e.:

“It might seem like artists deliberately cultivating “mysterious” personas is a recent, internet-fueled phenomenon. But while watching this documentary, it’s easy to see that the Scottish band was ahead of the curve. In those days, the band members themselves rarely appeared in press photos or gave interviews. Their album covers featured artful images of bookish outsiders and looked like stills from imaginary movies; their aesthetic was immaculately curated in a way that feels decidedly proto-Tumblr. All of this added up to the band’s strange allure.”

Don’t read, just watch.

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Belle and Sebastian – Belle and Sebastian

To the majority of my generation the words “Belle and Sebastian” link to the band, without a thought to the original work. Me too. Well, to the majority of my generation, those words fall to an ignorance. I know the band obtained Cécile Aubrey’s permission for use of her title (how many emo bands did that?!), but in doing so have they done a disservice in usurping its eminence?

To push it further away from the original, this song itself writes a whole new story. Belle is no longer a dog, Sebastian some downer, and the search is not this time for his mother but for safety and security in youth. Similarities could be drawn between the two stories, i’m sure, but in truth there are none. Just a song written by some mopey, introspective young Glaswegian. So how does Stuart Murdoch feel about the name, with the question “That’s an unusual name for a band. Is there a story behind it?” Does he care? Does it matter? Well, no. The transference of words and meaning.

you, the living

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Belle and Sebastian – Belle and Sebastian

R.I.P. Mme. Cécile Aubry, 1928-2010. I’ve never read any of your books but i’ve seen the TV show, and listened to the band who took their name from its namesake.


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Judy and the dream of horses – Belle and Sebastian

The original Jeepster LP release of this album stayed on the shelves of Paint It Black for something like three years and it is my Mr. T at the mall story. I’m not sure how it ended up in there and stayed there for so long. Punk distribution is a funny thing. I really regret not buying it. I really regret not buying a lot of things during those many, many years spent with no income. Yes, ain’t life hard.

I feel like i ask this question about a lot of things, never ever getting subtle or even the most overt of innuendo, but is this a dirty song? This is derived from taking the horse dream as literal and those girls in school who owned, rode, lived and loved horses, taking days off at a time for gymkhanas, riding to and from school, to and from anywhere, and the rest of us wondering what they found so much in horses, why human relations were dull in comparison. Not dirty yet. But then one day, some of us before others, we came to direct our pondering to that, on saddle, on horseback, they may be receiving… certain pleasures from the animal’s movement as they rode. It sounds idiotic, but is that what this song is about, Stewart?

It sounds idiotic to rest a young girl’s love for a horse solely on that… grinding. As small and as bestial a part that may play (and we’ve actually had it confirmed, adding nothing but weight to that one conclusion) a horse clearly brings so much to a girl in companionship, wonder, adventure, and in the tender relationship of any “pet” to rest it on that most adolescent or base psychoanalytical of determinations. There’s a reason The Saddle Club is so popular, and popular among those who have little to no to miscarried awareness of sexuality.

I don’t mean to ascribe sexual awakening/disappointment as anything “dirty”.

anemic cinema

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