It's time for a bit of a catch-up, I think. Now my degree is over and life is still lacking purpose, I have no excuse for not getting this up to date, really. Belle and Sebastian are a band I got into due to the influence of Rob (and the power of being Scottish). This, the band's second album, is the one I have listened to most, and as such made for an excellent choice of Christmas present last year. Thanks, cousin Andy.
The band seem to like having album covers that consist predominantly of one colour. I am a big fan of this. It gives a nice sense of continuity between the albums and I'm pretty sure if you got them all side-by-side it'd look glorious. Really enjoy the variety of shades of red here, too. Mmmm.
Inside the gatefold, we've got a big picture of I have no idea who. The band? Could be, then again it could not. There's also a slightly lengthy story written across the top, which may or may not be talking about them. The thing with Belle & Seb is they seem to be rather enigmatic, and it's not impossible that both of these things are totally unrelated to them just to confuse people. You can make your mind up (or, hopefully, someone can come along and correct me).
Plain black record. Red might have been nice to match the cover, but the lovely red shade of the labels will have to do for me. I also really enjoy the little fox on A-side label, he looks to be frolicking joyfully. The B-side label has some thanks on, beginning with the amusing line "Sarah Martin is our new member for this record. See if you can guess what she did". The back of the sleeve also has the lyrics to the entire album, which gets a big plus from me.
This album is beautifully twee. Guitars jangle, lyrics float around gently and I generally end up feeling like I should be wearing a cardigan to listen to it. It has a slight air of melancholy and yet always brings a smile to my face, most notably on its title track. It has a chorus built to live inside your head for weeks and is promptly followed by my other favourite track on the album, Mayfly. Mayfly has a stylophone solo and that is pretty much all you need to know about it. Amazing. This album is, without doubt, an all-time classic.