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Storytelling

Storytelling

3 Jun 2002
3.9 out of 5 stars 17 customer reviews

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Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

By A Customer on 28 Jun. 2002
Format: Audio CD
having witnessed them play live recently and then feeling that they have lost their magic recently, my love for belle & sebastian began to wane slightly, and when i put this album on for the first time i thought it had gone forever.
however, with it being belle and sebastian i decided to give it a few more listens and give it a chance before dismissing it...and them completely. now I have to try hard to get some of these tracks out of my head.
what you really have to remember about this album is that it is not a typical belle & sebastian album, but a soundtrack so you really treat it as such. that said, they still manage to show they're greatness through their instrumentals and lyrical ability on tracks such as "wandering alone" and "big john shaft". their choice of dialogues from the film seem to fit the album perfectly too.
with this album, belle & sebastian manage to show us that they can produce a record differently to their usual style and in a different context and still produce something wonderful.
like i said, give it a few listens.
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By A Customer on 9 Jun. 2002
Format: Audio CD
This is truly the most diverse Belle and Sebastian album yet. Much of the album contains quiet, acoustic songs - without lyrics, but these are cleverly interspersed with dialogues (from the film) and more classic Belle and Sebastian tracks. There are other surprises to come, Scooby Driver is very different to any of the band's previous songs, but is still great. It seems that Belle and Sebastian can master whatever they put their minds to - what will they do next?
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Format: Audio CD
Storytelling is a wonderful collection of songs, instrumental tracks and clips from the eponymous movie. I'm a passionate B&S fan but I enjoyed this more on first listen than their last album. Its fabulously chilled out: tracks like Night Walk could be from an acoustic version of Moon Safari by Air. But the band prove they can up the tempo as well on tracks like Scooby Driver and Storytelling. I think this is an album with a broad appeal and not just for existing fans - so get in there!
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Format: Audio CD
It's funny how particular regions or cities possess very specific modern musical traditions: Liverpool's Merseybeat and its 80s alternative bedrock; Manchester of the late-80s and early 90s (not to mention the current likes of Doves and Elbow); and the West Midlands tradition of old-school heavy metal.
And, swayed by regional stereotypes, it's always a pleasant surprise that Glasgow has been the purveyor of some of the finest, most melodic, pop music these islands have produced. No, I'm not talking about Lena Zavaroni (nor Del Amitri - Stupid!) No, for whilst Roddy Frame has ploughed a lone, but productive songwriting furrow, and while Teenage Fanclub have consistently made the Beach Boys sound like Slipknot, Belle & Sebastian have emerged as the nation's most unlikely arch melody-mongers and puveyors of understated witt.
This album is a compilation of songs written for Todd Solondz's film Storytelling - only about 6 minutes of the music actually made it onto the film, but Belle & Sebastian developed what was left, and this is the outstanding result. It's a mixed bag which includes its fair share of incidental soundtrack. In the whimsical harmonica and strings of "F*** This Sh*t" we might imagine our protagonist walking, hands pocketed, stopping to browse a shop window, buying a paper and having an unheard chat with the vendor.
"Night Walk's" simple piano melody skipping across a dreamy string-scape, however, suggests our subject is in more reflective mood, perhaps thinking back to better times. Make what you will of "Consuelo's" bittersweet blending of melancholy harp, brass and foreboding strings.
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By A Customer on 13 Jun. 2002
Format: Audio CD
I didn't see the film that this is the soundtrack for but I heard it was pretty dire. Luckily this album isn't! It is true that this is an odd album! It starts off with a few instrumentals with a few sound bites thrown in for good measure. You will have to listen to this album a few times through until it begins to sound good, but if you do this then you will realise that it is an amazing album!!
This is by no means B&S' best album, that award is taken by Tigermilk, but it is still a brilliant album! If you have never listened to B&S before then get Tigermilk! If you have heard any of their other stuff then this album will make clear the diversity that the band has! BUY IT!
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Format: Audio CD
"Oh no, they've really lost it... I've liked them from Tigermilk" "A real return to form after a lacklustre few albums" These are the comments that have met every Belle and Sebastian release since "Fold..." and I expect will meet every release until they call it a day.
Personally I like all the B+S records, including "Fold..." (shock horror!) which I think has two of their best ever songs on it in "Fought in a War" and "Too much love". I like this as well, though it has to be emphasized that this is a soundtrack and not an album proper.
It only has 5 (arguably 6) proper songs on it, of which "Black and White Unite" and "Big John Shaft" (particularly the latter)are up there with the best of the back catalogue and worth the price of the record alone. The others are rather half baked affairs.
The rest of the tracks are instrumental variations on a few musical ideas and soundbites from the film. The instrumentals are nice, "Fiction", "Freak" and "Consuelo leaving" are particularly noteworthy, but they are just instrumentals designed for a film, so you can't go complaining that they're boring nor view them as you would new B+S songs.
The soundbites seem to divide people. Obviously they're not supposed to be listened to on their own but as a divice to break up a largely instrumental record I think they work quite well.
All this goes on to make me say that whilst I agree that Stuart Murdoch is the master craftsman in B+S when it comes to writing songs, in the album stakes I think B+S are probably one of the most consistently solid bands around today with a highly individual sound. I thank you ;)
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