Who are these people that prefer "The Life Pursuit" to "Dear Catastrophe Waitress", and why?

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Can't dance? Hatred of service industry? Roy Walker fucked their girlfriend? I don't get it.

Dom Passantino (Dom Passantino), Sunday, 7 January 2007 19:44 (fourteen years ago) link

Who are these people who think B&S isnt BS?

Forsythe Pendleton Jones III (Grodd), Sunday, 7 January 2007 19:45 (fourteen years ago) link

I can't dance, but I don't think that has anything to do with my preference. It's all about the fact that Murdoch sounds like he's in control of the band again and, frankly, the songs are better than on Dear Catastrophe Waitress.

Johnny Fever (johnny fever), Sunday, 7 January 2007 19:56 (fourteen years ago) link

A serious answer to that question would require me listening carefully to both albums, which I'm not sure I can be bothered with. I just found LP initially more sonically interesting that DCW, but no B&S has proven to have a particularly long shelf-life with me. (I also can't dance.)

My favorite thing of anything of "theirs" is the Avalanches remix of "I'm a Cuckoo."

i'll mitya halfway (mitya), Sunday, 7 January 2007 20:23 (fourteen years ago) link

Ooh, tough one. I think that some tracks on TLP (specifically "Dress Up In You", probably others) are better than any individual track on DCW, but I think DCW is the better album overall in terms of consistency.

ailsa (ailsa), Sunday, 7 January 2007 20:37 (fourteen years ago) link

I couldn't get into Life Pursuit at all.

Then again, I'm the weirdo who actually enjoyed most of Fold Your Hands.

Zachary Scott (Zach S), Sunday, 7 January 2007 20:38 (fourteen years ago) link

About half of FYHCYWLAP is pretty good. There are some total clunkers on there (hello "Beyond the Sunrise" and "Family Tree", the latter being guaranteed "that'll be time for ailsa to go to the bar then" marker at gigs pre Isobel departure), but the entire thing is redeemed by "There's Too Much Love".

ailsa (ailsa), Sunday, 7 January 2007 20:41 (fourteen years ago) link

TLP has the band's best pop single "Funny Little Frog," and a much, much greater level of consistency than DCW, which had two great songs (title track and "Piazza") two pretty good ones ("Office" and "Send"), and a bunch of middling filler material. TLP had four great songs (title track, "Sunny," "Blues," and "Frog") and one dud ("Mornington") and the rest was incredibly solid, even Jackson's two tracks. TLP is the best full-length the band has ever released.

Eric Harvey (eric marathonpacks), Sunday, 7 January 2007 21:05 (fourteen years ago) link

I haven't heard TLP, but my friend played DCW on repeat for about 2 months, so I got to know it pretty well. It really wasn't that bad, but I take issue with the title-track being described as 'great'. I found it to be nigh-on unlistenable, the worst thing on the album by a distance (icky penultimate track notwithstanding). Lord Anthony and Stay Loose were probably my favourites, the opening track and I'm A Cuckoo runners-up. Jeez, that title-track was an embarrassment, though.

You've Got Scourage On Your Breath (Haberdager), Sunday, 7 January 2007 21:11 (fourteen years ago) link

"Dear Catastrophe Waitress" I find is their best album because it retains what is best about them and adds some more production and just slightly more detail to their previously too ambient and "stripped" sound.

Still no huge B&S fan though. But the lack of danceability is a positive thing about their music. :)

Geir Hongro (GeirHong), Monday, 8 January 2007 00:35 (fourteen years ago) link

tsk.

mark grout (mark grout), Monday, 8 January 2007 01:03 (fourteen years ago) link

Can't get into TLP at all. "Sukie in the Graveyard" and "We Are the Sleepyheads" aside it's all so flat and ordinary. The songs themselves are a bit boring.
DCW has spunk.

DavidM* (unreal), Monday, 8 January 2007 01:07 (fourteen years ago) link

It's been ages since I listened to DCW (Aside from "Lord Anthony"), but I noticed more jingles on TLP (they may have less lyrical meat, but I'm ok with that). I don't remember DCW being dancier, but I should revisit someday.

Zwan (miccio), Monday, 8 January 2007 01:08 (fourteen years ago) link

I need to play TLP more.

But "FLF" is their finest single/video ever. except for .....

mark grout (mark grout), Monday, 8 January 2007 03:01 (fourteen years ago) link

Is "Dress Up In You" a Silence of the Lambs homage?

milo z (mlp), Monday, 8 January 2007 03:02 (fourteen years ago) link

rahhhhhhhhhhhhhh dcw.

aftercare (blood bitch), Monday, 8 January 2007 03:51 (fourteen years ago) link

I think DCW is their duffest to date because I reckon their charm lies in their amateurish attention to detail, whereas the layer of gloss given by Trevor Horn makes them sound bland on this album.

Jez (Jez), Thursday, 11 January 2007 11:24 (fourteen years ago) link

DCW is more intersting, TLP is more consistent.

wogan lenin (dog latin), Thursday, 11 January 2007 14:33 (fourteen years ago) link

doglatin: OTM

I think both albums are pretty good.

zeus (zeus), Thursday, 11 January 2007 14:45 (fourteen years ago) link

Off topic, but does "I'm A Cuckoo" sound like an ape of Thin Lizzy's "the Boys are Back in Town" to anyone else? Was that by design, er wha? I don't read about B&S, so I don't know if they have said anything about it. On my first listen of the song I thought "This sounds like Thin Lizzy" and then right there in the lyrics "thin-Lizzy-o" or something like that...surprised me

J. Grizzle (trainsmoke), Thursday, 11 January 2007 14:46 (fourteen years ago) link

"their previously too ambient and "stripped" sound."

WAHT

the original hauntology blogging crew (Enrique), Thursday, 11 January 2007 14:46 (fourteen years ago) link

TLP is a unified, coherent statement (a statement that happens to involve being a collection of great songs), whereas DCW was a collection of (also often great) songs. B&S's charm wasn't, or shouldn't have been, their amateurish attention to detail-- anyone can and will copy an aesthetic, often poorly (see what happened to grunge)-- it was their quiet mastery of and obsession with the pop form, and here that's simply gotten a little more sure of itself, asking a bit more of indie audiences (and less of average, song-loving folks) than an album full of '90s indie authenticity tropes.

Best album of aught six; B&S's "best since...". Murdoch's "We're in our 'You Can't Always Get What You Want' phase" bar-setting may well prove apt.

Better question: Who are these people who prefer TLP to IFS?

marc h. (marc h.), Thursday, 11 January 2007 15:00 (fourteen years ago) link

(p.s. not saying DCW was an album full of '90s indie authenticity tropes... but that seems to be what ppl want of B&S, which I think speaks more about ppl than about B&S)

marc h. (marc h.), Thursday, 11 January 2007 15:02 (fourteen years ago) link

Off topic, but does "I'm A Cuckoo" sound like an ape of Thin Lizzy's "the Boys are Back in Town" to anyone else

yes

marc h. (marc h.), Thursday, 11 January 2007 15:03 (fourteen years ago) link

"i'm a cuckoo" is supposed to sound like an ape of "the boys are back in town". that's b&s being silly and twee.

dream torture (blood bitch), Thursday, 11 January 2007 15:25 (fourteen years ago) link

See also: "Wrapped Up In Books" and "Out In The Country"

Dom Passantino (Dom Passantino), Thursday, 11 January 2007 15:28 (fourteen years ago) link

B&S's charm wasn't, or shouldn't have been, their amateurish attention to detail-- anyone can and will copy an aesthetic,

I phrased that incorrectly: I meant 'attentional to detail', and (quite sepearate from this) an amateurishness in the recordings. It's the former that's lacking on DCW. Affecting the latter, I agree, is irritating ... although the Razorcuts are exempt in my book ;-)

Jez (Jez), Thursday, 11 January 2007 16:17 (fourteen years ago) link

Off topic, but does "I'm A Cuckoo" sound like an ape of Thin Lizzy's "the Boys are Back in Town" to anyone else? Was that by design, er wha? I don't read about B&S, so I don't know if they have said anything about it. On my first listen of the song I thought "This sounds like Thin Lizzy" and then right there in the lyrics "thin-Lizzy-o" or something like that...surprised me

u jokin' right?

they covered "whiskey in the jar" as a b-side to a single off tlp, forget which one.

hstencil (hstencil), Thursday, 11 January 2007 16:21 (fourteen years ago) link

u jokin' right?

no I ain't!

like I said..I never cared enough. B&S fans and my x's have that on me...

J. Grizzle (trainsmoke), Thursday, 11 January 2007 16:29 (fourteen years ago) link

you should care about thin lizzy.

hstencil (hstencil), Thursday, 11 January 2007 16:32 (fourteen years ago) link

I care about Thin Lizzy. But not B&S post-Boy With the Arab Strap.

J. Grizzle (trainsmoke), Thursday, 11 January 2007 16:42 (fourteen years ago) link

Belle and Sebastian also frequently covered "The Boys Are Back in Town" at live shows while supporting Dear Catastrophe Waitress.

DCW is a better album, btw -- it retains their charm in the midst of the stepped-up production.

jaymc (jaymc), Thursday, 11 January 2007 16:51 (fourteen years ago) link

another superficial, snarky, and once again off-topic comment from me, then I'm done:

"sukie in the graveyard" = Stu Murdoch definitively convincing himself that he is Marc Bolan incarnate

J. Grizzle (trainsmoke), Thursday, 11 January 2007 16:59 (fourteen years ago) link

DCW felt like B&S was confident and not afraid to dance, and it was totally what I wanted from them at the time: nice and solid. TLP took that to an unfortunate extreme, where every song had to be fizzy and fun, and it got a bit relentless.

jaymc (jaymc), Thursday, 11 January 2007 17:03 (fourteen years ago) link

"every song had to be fizzy and fun"

you REALLY should listen again, jay

marc h. (marc h.), Thursday, 11 January 2007 18:43 (fourteen years ago) link

Seeing them live on tour for TLP killed any enthusiasm I might have had for the record. Totally lifeless. A band going through a series of formal motions that half aped their past and half aped their influences. To an adoring, insufferable and universally hideous throng. This after hearing years of praise for live shows circa The Boy With the Arab Strap.

Now, I'm sure I'll eventually get over my distaste for the performance, and the record is certainly pleasant enough. But no matter how much I'm willing to forgive, it'll ever be any more than that. The early records have a deep, honest ache and beauty that can't be pinned entirely to "amateurishness" and which B&S haven't touched in a long, long time. (Plus better tunes.)

Adam Beales (Pye Poudre), Thursday, 11 January 2007 19:06 (fourteen years ago) link

The early records have a deep, honest ache and beauty that can't be pinned entirely to "amateurishness" and which B&S haven't touched in a long, long time. (Plus better tunes.)

Huzzah!

J. Grizzle (trainsmoke), Thursday, 11 January 2007 19:14 (fourteen years ago) link

To an adoring, insufferable and universally hideous throng.

I have a feeling this sentence is the more relevant one. Sad, really.

marc h. (marc h.), Thursday, 11 January 2007 19:27 (fourteen years ago) link

Yeah, the crowd really was awful. And that did cause me pain. And I tried to keep the performance and my crowd-grief separate, but, God help me, I may not have been entirely successful.

Still, the only part of the show that felt alive was when they hauled one of the adoring (sufferable, less than hideous) up on stage to duet with Stuart. She stole the show in a heartbeat. Made the actual band look like shabbily constructed androids.

Adam Beales (Pye Poudre), Thursday, 11 January 2007 19:47 (fourteen years ago) link

nine months pass...

I'm just listening to the Life Pursuit for the first time, and it's totally great! I was one of those people that thought they're discography was all diminishing returns. But I really like this! I wonder how it's going to hold up.

Billy Pilgrim, Friday, 9 November 2007 04:17 (thirteen years ago) link

*their*

Billy Pilgrim, Friday, 9 November 2007 04:18 (thirteen years ago) link

it's just occurred to me that TLP is the only belle and sebastian record i don't have.

it's also occurred to me i have too many B&S records considering i never listen to any of them

electricsound, Friday, 9 November 2007 04:39 (thirteen years ago) link

Until today I could have typed the exact same thing. And I still do, except now I have TLP, and I'll definitely be listening to it again! Hardcore B&S fans must be shaking their heads...

Billy Pilgrim, Friday, 9 November 2007 05:38 (thirteen years ago) link

oh marc hogan how could i say no to you

jaymc, Friday, 9 November 2007 07:11 (thirteen years ago) link

to answer the original question i don't get it either.
especially seeing as IF SHE WANTS ME is their best ever song.

pisces, Friday, 9 November 2007 14:36 (thirteen years ago) link

dom passantweemo

That one guy that hit it and quit it, Friday, 9 November 2007 14:37 (thirteen years ago) link

Yeah, one thing I've never been known for is my love of twee pop, huh?

Dom Passantino, Friday, 9 November 2007 14:37 (thirteen years ago) link

Who are these people that prefer "The Life Pursuit" listening to Belle & Sebastian to "Dear Catastrophe Waitress" dying a slow, painful death, and why?

stephen, Friday, 9 November 2007 15:31 (thirteen years ago) link

lol you like depeche mode

That one guy that hit it and quit it, Friday, 9 November 2007 15:32 (thirteen years ago) link

I would be more distressed if people preferred The Life Pursuit to B&S's first 3 full-length albums.

CaptainLorax, Friday, 9 November 2007 20:43 (thirteen years ago) link

it kills boy with the arab strap though.

tremendoid, Friday, 9 November 2007 20:58 (thirteen years ago) link

Personally I think DCW is one of Belle & Sebastian's very best. Not quite as good as Sinister or the 1997 EPs, but closer than you'd think. The Life Pursuit lacks DCW's graceful production and songwriting, but there's a lot of good on it anyway.

mike a, Friday, 9 November 2007 21:03 (thirteen years ago) link

I have a hunch that the movie/musical Stuart Murdoch is working on is going to be awesome. Also, I listen to The Life Pursuit more often than any other B&S album aside from Tigermilk. Most of the songs on TLP are pastiches, but they're exceptionally good ones.

Emily S., Friday, 9 November 2007 21:16 (thirteen years ago) link

lets agree to disagree, but you were wrong about arab strap, that album is awesome in every way.

CaptainLorax, Friday, 9 November 2007 23:27 (thirteen years ago) link

oh marc hogan how could i say no to you

-- jaymc, Friday, November 9, 2007 1:11 AM (16 hours ago) Bookmark Link

^^^drunk post

jaymc, Friday, 9 November 2007 23:32 (thirteen years ago) link

xp I love Arab Strap too but the weaknesses are more obtrusive on there, for one thing. Anyhow I still rate Fold Your Hands as at least my 3nd favorite full length so I never expect to agree with anyone on B&S threads ;)

tremendoid, Saturday, 10 November 2007 00:33 (thirteen years ago) link

I basically agree with mark h. But, like Adam Beales, when I saw them tour TLP they were totally charmless. Then I ended up loving the record. The live performance kind of pulled all their songs into this dull middle ground. But on record, with fewer songs and clearer production to distinguish them from one another, I think I value that cohesiveness a lot more. Sinister is my favourite, and that has a lot more focus than the other early stuff - I think that gives it its personality.

TLP has got focus as a whole (+consistency, the odd 'Best Of' contribution), where DCW kind of hops about before deciding what to do at the end. Its like Trevor Horn picked them up and threw them this way and that trying to see how they worked (that makes it sound more fun than I've ever found it). I kind of have FYHetc and DCW in the same bracket - they don't really hang together as albums, they've got some dross, and they've got some great stuff. If anything I prefer FYHC - its two albums I don't ever want get to the end of, and at least that one has better highs if I'm going to be hitting the skip button.

Greist, Saturday, 10 November 2007 02:13 (thirteen years ago) link

WHO ARE THESE PEOPLE THAT PREFER LISTENING TO BELLE AND SEBASTIAN TO DYING A SLOW, PAINFUL DEATH

AND WHY

stephen, Saturday, 10 November 2007 04:10 (thirteen years ago) link

I definitely prefer TLP over DCW for many of the reasons stated above.

DCW has several great songs and lots of filler. I've never been a big fan of the move to include more songs by or featuring members other than Stuart Murdoch.

TLP is much more solid, more consistent, more enjoyable. And it is particularly nice because it seems like a true break from their past work. They were in a rut and needed the change.

Moodles, Saturday, 10 November 2007 04:46 (thirteen years ago) link

TLP is consistantly boring.

DavidM, Saturday, 10 November 2007 09:52 (thirteen years ago) link

TLP is consistantly boring.

hay i fixed that one for you k? ^^

stephen, Sunday, 11 November 2007 19:42 (thirteen years ago) link

TLPB&S is consistantly boring.

hay i fixed that one again, the second time

stephen, Sunday, 11 November 2007 19:43 (thirteen years ago) link

two years pass...

<3<3 'the life pursuit' <3<3

Youve Beenexposed (J0rdan S.), Tuesday, 15 June 2010 20:35 (ten years ago) link

recently realized how much latter day B&S sounds like late 70s/early 80s Kinks, lyrics/music/everything

tylerw, Tuesday, 15 June 2010 20:41 (ten years ago) link

can't believe it's been 4 years since these guys have released an album.

iatee, Tuesday, 15 June 2010 20:41 (ten years ago) link

there's a new one on the horizon right?

tylerw, Tuesday, 15 June 2010 20:42 (ten years ago) link

DCW has greater highs, but TLP is more consistent.

The idea of B&S releasing an album in 2010 is kind of hard for me to get my head around.

village idiot (dog latin), Wednesday, 16 June 2010 08:58 (ten years ago) link

The needless hair splitting in the thread title is hilarious.

Vulvuzela (Matt DC), Wednesday, 16 June 2010 09:34 (ten years ago) link

DCW has greater highs, but TLP is more consistent.

it is more consistently rubbish, certainly. I re-listened to all my B&S stuff recently, and I was really stunned by how bad TLP is. Even the songs that are a bit better than the others would only count as filler on another B&S album.

I get the idea that a lot of B&S fans do not like DCW that much, but this might be more a factor of thinking they stopped being any good after IYBS.

I remember when DCW, being rather surprised by how good it was. I wish they had stopped then, it would have made a nice late career highlight and finisher.

The New Dirty Vicar, Wednesday, 16 June 2010 12:11 (ten years ago) link

DCW had a lot of nonsense on it though. TPS has some proper tunes - Dress Up In You is one of their better ballads, the Act Of The Apostle tracks are great too. And To Be Myself Completely is the best song by that one guy who isn't Stuart.

village idiot (dog latin), Wednesday, 16 June 2010 12:50 (ten years ago) link

Love TLP, only intermittently engaged by their back catalogue. I'm in a more upbeat phase right now though, so as soon as I go back to mopey music I'm sure I'll begin to prefer Tigermilk etc. But since its release I'm always glad to hear a track from TLP crop up on shuffle but I can't say the same for DCW.

"Dress Up In You", "Sukie", "White Collar Boy", that other T-rex one, what was it, oh yeah, "Blues are Still Blue", "Another Sunny Day", to a somewhat lesser extent "Frog" and "Apostle I & II"... love 'em. This record feels to me like (not sounds like) one of the Smiths' better albums; I retrieve similar pleasures from it. I do recall there were a couple of stinkers on it, though.

Fifi live from gay Paree (staggerlee), Wednesday, 16 June 2010 23:20 (ten years ago) link

I like TLP but I'm pretty sure it's my least favorite B&S album (BWTAS being the most favorite, obv)

exit through the (Tape Store), Thursday, 17 June 2010 00:14 (ten years ago) link

TLP is the only B&S i still think to put on these days. i tried listening to sinister a few weeks ago and i just couldn't relate to it anymore.

psychrock...? (electricsound), Thursday, 17 June 2010 00:21 (ten years ago) link

Neither album compares well with their earlier albums, but TLP is such a dog of an album.

Cunga, Thursday, 17 June 2010 00:23 (ten years ago) link

raises hand, i love The Life Pursuit always puts me in a good mood.

Boo Radley (Bee OK), Thursday, 17 June 2010 02:51 (ten years ago) link

Who are these people that think any one LP that came out after 'The Boy with the Arab Strap' is the best Belle and Sebastian LP as opposed to those before and including TBwtAS?

scooter (CaptainLorax), Thursday, 17 June 2010 03:02 (ten years ago) link

People that focus on lyrics more than the music?

scooter (CaptainLorax), Thursday, 17 June 2010 03:04 (ten years ago) link

ten years pass...

I think this may be true as I love lyrical construction and wordplay and TLP ranks high for these in my very blinkered tastes.

Hunt3r, Wednesday, 28 April 2021 00:45 (one week ago) link

DCW has greater highs, but TLP is more consistent.
This is the correct take. I love them both equally

J. Sam, Wednesday, 28 April 2021 00:51 (one week ago) link

I don't think I'd listened to either since the poll a couple of years ago. A ridiculous track-by-track showdown after such a hiatus suggests that it might be a tie for me. I barely had to think at all to select a winner in each match, and the more annoying bits of each record are neatly eliminated, lol. A compilation of the victors could even be their best LP. Sorta. Maybe.


THE LIFE PURSUIT DEAR CATASTROPHE WAITRESS WINNER

Act of the Apostle 1+2 Step into My Office, Baby TLP -
Another Sunny Day Dear Catastrophe Waitress TLP -
White Collar Boy If She Wants Me - DCW
The Blues Are Still Blue Piazza, New York Catcher - DCW
Dress Up in You Asleep on a Sunbeam TLP -
Sukie in the Graveyard I'm a Cuckoo - DCW
We Are the Sleepyheads You Don't Send Me TLP -
Song for Sunshine Wrapped Up in Books - DCW
Funny Little Frog Lord Anthony TLP -
To Be Myself Completely If You Find Yourself Caught in Love - DCW
For the Price of a Cup of Tea Roy Walker TLP -
Mornington Crescent Stay Loose - DCW

Nag! Nag! Nag!, Wednesday, 28 April 2021 04:43 (one week ago) link

Both albums are maybe a song or two too long but a compilation of the best of both would beat even Sinister

Urbandn hope all ye who enter here (dog latin), Wednesday, 28 April 2021 08:29 (one week ago) link

In my head DCW is my favourite, but looking at the two tracklistings it's very very close

Urbandn hope all ye who enter here (dog latin), Wednesday, 28 April 2021 08:42 (one week ago) link

And man, TLP sounds BIG today. It kinda rocks. Those horns at the end of "Sukie"...

Urbandn hope all ye who enter here (dog latin), Wednesday, 28 April 2021 09:03 (one week ago) link

"mornington crescent" and "dress up in you" are probably among my 5 or 10 most played B&S songs

intern at pepe le pew research (Simon H.), Wednesday, 28 April 2021 13:12 (one week ago) link

Dress Up In You is definitely a career highlight.

Very keen on To Be Myself Completely as well. Maybe my favourite non-Murdoch song?

Urbandn hope all ye who enter here (dog latin), Wednesday, 28 April 2021 13:19 (one week ago) link

DCW has greater highs, but TLP is more consistent.
This is the correct take. I love them both equally

this is pretty much where I'm at in theory, but the reality is that I only ever listen to a few songs off either of them these days.

Mr. Cacciatore (Moodles), Wednesday, 28 April 2021 13:28 (one week ago) link

Very keen on To Be Myself Completely as well. Maybe my favourite non-Murdoch song?
Yeah, that's definitely my favorite Stevie Jackson song

J. Sam, Wednesday, 28 April 2021 13:31 (one week ago) link


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