The Life Pursuit
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To twee or not to twee, that is the question, and it's one that Belle and Sebastian have spent the last few years answering in the former.
Yet, as soon as the laidback bass of"Act Of The Apostle" opens this, their seventh album,you know something of an epiphany has taken place.
It could be the use of Beck's producer Tony Hoffer or the Californian rays of the recording sessions, but where once there was soppy indie, now there is solid sunshine pop.
It's not a complete departure, but for once, the quaint sensibilities don't overburden the tunes and the result, particularly on the insanely catchy "Funny Little Frog" and the chunky Bowie groove of "The Blues Are Still Blue", is an essential blend of quintessentially retro beats and fine storytelling. --Chris Long
Find more music at the BBC This link will take you off Amazon in a new window
Top Customer Reviews
Some familar B&S themes are here; Self-referential lyrical depreciation. Side references to religion. Musical inspiration taken from the 70s. Mainstream, but unmistakable. Equally noticable is that the band members are better musicians than ever. This is a band still on the way up, still changing, a band not yet devoid of new ideas.
I suppose it must hurt to see your own special obscure band take a direction that gets them attention outside their niche. I can't see any other reason for some of the review comments here. Common sense would suggest if you really only ever liked past B&S member Isabel Campbell's music, the best course of action is to buy a CD that she's on, not one she's not. It seems pointless to complain about her absense afterwards, never mind inventing unsavoury personal motivations for other band members based around her.
B & S are changing. They're still making good music. Join in or move on.
The diversity on this album is breathtaking from the glam/T Rex feel of 'Blues are Still Blue' to the almost English folk delivery of 'To be Myself Completely' As usual,you find the tunes getting hold of your brain and not letting go and the lyrics made me smile with pleasure.I know it is only Feburary but this is the album of the year already. In thirty years of listening to all kinds of music this band has restored my faith and genuinely excite me.Scotlands For Me.
The first track, The Act of the Apostle I is a great upbeat start to the album. The chorus is amazing, memorable and very layered.
Another Sunny Day starts off very upbeat with a fastish beat and happy lyrics. Not the best song on the album, but the standards on the album never go below excellent.
White Collar Boy sounds edgier than the rest of the album. It has backup vocals which really add to the song no end. Once again, great chorus. Very good song!
The Blues Are Still Blue is a foot tapping song with smart lyrics, some might say it's a little cheesy though. But the blues are still blue! Again, catchy and memorable tune and chorus.
Dress Up in You is probably my least favourite song on the album because it's slower and much less memorable than the rest of the album. Has backup vocals from a female singer.
Sukie in the Graveyard is great! Very upbeat and jazzy sounding. Another memorable track.
We Are the Sleepyheads is once again a fast upbeat track with a great beat and fast guitar.
Song For Sunshine may just be the most memorable song on the album purely because of the chorus. I love it! It's not neccessarily the best song on the album but the chorus makes this song excel. Sunshine/We all see/The same sky. This will be stuck in your head for a while after hearing it.
Funny Little Frog is a nice track, and the single B&S released from this album I believe.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Belle & Sebastian emerged from their post-The Boy With The Arab Strap slump like a beautiful butterfly with this fantastic album. Read morePublished 19 months ago by Tim
I only got into belle and Sebastian by chance,i lost this album years ago and never got round to buying it again until now,and it brought back great memories,great album,if you... Read morePublished on 16 Sept. 2013 by diane
Superb album for a very low price.
The quality of the disc and case were second to none
Take no notice of Amazons recommendation. The only connection to Camera Obscura is some obscure Scottish connection. Read morePublished on 13 Mar. 2013 by sk5333
Their image is very fey and soft but they are probably a lot more forceful and rockier than you might expect. They can play loud and up-tempo. Which they often do. Read morePublished on 29 July 2009 by BS on parade
Belle and the boys and girls have come up with a drifty tuneful rocky gem of an Album! I'm listening to it now and every time I play it I always feel better! Read morePublished on 9 July 2009 by Alan D. Evans
One should really spare a thought for some of the other bands who tiptoed onto the scene at the same time as B&S. Read morePublished on 6 May 2008 by pjr