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Belle And Sebastian - Dear Catastrophe Waitress

  by Benjamin Howarth

published: 28 / 10 / 2003



Belle And Sebastian - Dear Catastrophe Waitress
Label: Rough Trade
Format: CD

intro

Latest album from Belle and Sebastian, which finds them restaking their claim to be one of Britain's most important bands


It’s been such a long time but, finally, Belle And Sebastian have re-staked their claim to be one of Britain’s most important bands. Once deemed worthy cover stars and capable of top 20 hits, the band seem to have been marginalized since the release of 2000’s 'Fold Your Arms Child, You Walk Like A Peasant' (which I thought was a really good album, but the party line nowadays is that it was ‘patchy’). There have been some singles since then, like the superb 'Jonathon David', and also a soundtrack to the film 'Storytelling', which was also excellent.   'Dear Catastrophe Waitress' is a fine album, and a worthwhile step forward in the band's career. Stuart Murdoch’s unique lyrical style has not departed him, and for the first time, the band’s sillier songs sound as good as their serious ones. 'Step Into My Office, Baby' is probably the high point of the album. The album has quite a consistent mood, stylistically, mostly upbeat indie-pop with nods to the 60's. Belle And Sebastian never quite escape sounding like Nick Drake – not that that is a bad thing! – and there are some nods to Love in places as well, and the same Smiths and Felt influences show up again. It seems that the band are now very comfortable with their fanbase and their place in music, so they will just get down to the business of making records they will enjoy.   The main talking point will of course be the production by Trevor Horn, he who sent T.A.T.U. to number one this year, but it’s not that big a deal. He is certainly a better studio technician than most, and has done a good job, but it’s the best kind of production job, because you don’ really notice it. The music sounds a little crisper, but it’s not like Belle And Sebastian have decided to become a 21st Century slick pop act. 'Dear Catastrophe Waitress' has few flaws, but it doesn’t feel as special as their earlier records did when they came out. Having said that, it’s still one of the year’s better albums.



Track Listing:-
1 Step Into My Office, Baby
2 Dear Catastrophe Waitress
3 If She Wants Me
4 Piazza, New York Catcher
5 Asleep On A Sunbeam
6 I'm a Cuckoo
7 You Don't Send Me
8 Wrapped Up In Books
9 Lord Anthony
10 If You Find Yourself Caught In Love
11 Roy Walker
12 Stay Loose


Band Links:-
http://www.seagravesocialphotography.com


Label Links:-
https://twitter.com/RoughTradeRecs
http://roughtraderecords.com/
https://www.facebook.com/roughtraderecords



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interviews


Interview (2009)
Belle And Sebastian - Interview
Ben Howarth speaks to Chris Geddes, the keyboardist with Belle and Sebastian about how their own one-off 1999 festival, the Bowlie Weekender had a crucial impact on the All Tomorrow's Parties festivals, and, after a long absence, his band's own plans for the future

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Manchester Cathedral, Manchester, 28/10/2104
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