Words and Music by Saint Etienne

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I had been shopping online for artsy maps & found this a while back, before I'd seen the album cover. I like it! Didn't buy the print though.

Euler, Wednesday, 22 February 2012 12:54 (five years ago) Permalink

the print is shoreditch, i don't recognise where the album is.

watercooler challenge (ledge), Wednesday, 22 February 2012 12:57 (five years ago) Permalink

That cover is hideous. I don't quite believe they are using a cheesy image like that, already available for under a fiver. Is it possibly a fake?

everything, Wednesday, 22 February 2012 19:00 (five years ago) Permalink

I think this might be the album I'm mosting looking forward to this year. Love the single and the artwork, great to have them back.

Kitchen Person, Wednesday, 22 February 2012 19:04 (five years ago) Permalink

I sort of want them to sound *mature* in that reminiscing about the lea valley sort of way.

djh, Wednesday, 22 February 2012 20:50 (five years ago) Permalink

That could describe everything they have released since Good Humor, so I think you are not going to be disappointed.

everything, Wednesday, 22 February 2012 21:52 (five years ago) Permalink

I don't know, if any band has earned the right to use that image on their album cover, it's Saint Etienne.

the girl from spirea x (f. hazel), Thursday, 23 February 2012 15:48 (five years ago) Permalink

poo croydon-the field mice or saint etienne?

keythhtyek, Friday, 24 February 2012 03:15 (five years ago) Permalink


So our remix of the single is coming out on all formats including rather thrillingly the 12" vinyl! One mix is by us, one is by Richard X and another is by The 2 Bears so it seems we're in pretty good company.

piscesx, Sunday, 4 March 2012 05:55 (five years ago) Permalink

two weeks pass...

Their video! Our remix!

piscesx, Friday, 23 March 2012 17:40 (five years ago) Permalink

great job!

johnny crunch, Friday, 23 March 2012 17:46 (five years ago) Permalink


piscesx, Friday, 23 March 2012 17:50 (five years ago) Permalink

The extended version of this is, like so many singles, so much better than the single version.

boxedjoy, Monday, 26 March 2012 09:41 (five years ago) Permalink

four weeks pass...

This is lovely.


Kitchen Person, Monday, 23 April 2012 21:25 (five years ago) Permalink


djh, Sunday, 29 April 2012 00:30 (five years ago) Permalink

Anyone know what's on the extra CD on the deluxe edition? None of the retailers I looked at had a track listing.

fun loving and xtremely tolrant (Billy Dods), Sunday, 29 April 2012 13:01 (five years ago) Permalink

Weird, isn't it? (To have a bonus disc which is presumably meant to make you pre-order/buy early but then not tempt with details).

djh, Sunday, 29 April 2012 15:11 (five years ago) Permalink

No doubt something that will come out again in three years time to fan club members with added bonus features and remixes for a "bargain" price...

(I do mean that with love)

boxedjoy, Sunday, 29 April 2012 15:32 (five years ago) Permalink

Tracklisting has now been announced for the deluxe edition.

Disc 1
01 Over The Border 05:05
02 I've Got Your Music 03:46
03 Heading For The Fair 03:45
04 Last Days of Disco 03:35
05 Tonight 04:38
06 Answer Song 03:25
07 Record Doctor 53
08 Popular 03:23
09 Twenty Five Years 03:40
10 DJ 04:39
11 When I Was Seventeen 03:37
12 I Threw It All Away 03:27
13 Haunted Jukebox 04:15

Disc 2
01 Tonight (Two Bears Remix) 07:19
02 Last Days of Disco (Erol Alkan Remix) 06:16
03 DJ (Stay+ Remix) 03:45
04 I've Got Your Music (Golden Filter Remix) 07:08
05 Popular (Tom Middleton Cosmos Remix) 08:17
06 Heading For The Fair (The Time And Space Machine Waltzer Remix) 07:57
07 Tonight (Club Clique Remix) 04:43
08 Answer Song (White Horses Remix) 03:37
09 Haunted Jukebox (Summer Camp Remix) 03:26
10 I've Got Your Music (Kisses Remix) 04:22
11 DJ (Muddyloop Remix) 04:16
12 Last Days of Disco (Beat Connection Remix) 04:41

Popjustice have the new single as the song of the day. It's good but easily the waekest of the three tracks that I've heard from the album. http://www.popjustice.com/songs/saint-etienne-ive-got-your-music/

Kitchen Person, Monday, 30 April 2012 13:31 (five years ago) Permalink

hey we're on this. we just found out! track 7 too; always a lucky number.

piscesx, Monday, 30 April 2012 14:10 (five years ago) Permalink

Found this link http://brightonmusicblog.wordpress.com/2012/04/28/words-music-by-saint-etienne-conversation-by-pete-wiggs/ seemingly there's a 3 disc 'super deluxe' edition! Haven't saw any mention of this before.

fun loving and xtremely tolrant (Billy Dods), Monday, 30 April 2012 14:16 (five years ago) Permalink

...Popular is genuinely funny. It flips the old pop narrative of knowing an amazing secret club where the cool cats hang out: here, the club is an internet messageboard populated by people who want to discuss Pussycat's 1976 No 1 Mississippi in depth. It's less The In Crowd than that episode of The IT Crowd where Moss joins a society of exceptional Countdown contestants.


mike t-diva, Friday, 11 May 2012 14:24 (five years ago) Permalink

"Tonight" is one of the year's best, a wonderful driving-down-the-interstate track.

Exile in lolville (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Friday, 11 May 2012 14:25 (five years ago) Permalink

Petridish xpost: no it isn't.

But the song does mention "Baby Jump."

Here he is with the classic "Poème Électronique." Good track (Marcello Carlin), Friday, 11 May 2012 14:59 (five years ago) Permalink

Saint Etienne were probably the last band I actually "collected" (ie. bought the various cd singles as well as the albums). Reading the first two thirds of the Petridish review made me feel vaguely hopeful for the album, the last third didn't. Not that I've ever taken notice of one of his reviews before.

djh, Friday, 11 May 2012 22:13 (five years ago) Permalink

I'm probably not the only one who is more interested in hearing the bonus disc(s) rather than the album proper.

everything, Friday, 11 May 2012 22:42 (five years ago) Permalink

Ooh, tempted. But £36 is too much for me. Would be keen to have the map though.

fun loving and xtremely tolrant (Billy Dods), Tuesday, 15 May 2012 21:10 (five years ago) Permalink

Not yet played disc two but so far I think my favourite thing about the release is Pete Wiggs' beard on the inner sleeve.

djh, Monday, 21 May 2012 18:00 (five years ago) Permalink

Emails went out for digital versions for those who bought the box set, so the third disc should show up online before too long. Going to listen when I get home!

the girl from spirea x (f. hazel), Monday, 21 May 2012 18:35 (five years ago) Permalink

This album is pretty great. "DJ" and "Over The Border" are the standout tracks for me. Coincidentally, they remind me of "Action" and "Finisterre" (the song) respectively, only much better.

daavid, Tuesday, 22 May 2012 07:09 (five years ago) Permalink

Yeah this is really great return. Over The Border is just a perfect opener but I think it's the last four songs that really make the album. Need a bit more time to let the rest of the album sink in.

I'm surprised that I'm finding the latest single to be the weakest song.

Kitchen Person, Tuesday, 22 May 2012 16:35 (five years ago) Permalink

Liking it but not loving it atm. "Over the Border" is all a bit too much jumpers for goalposts, no?

DavidM, Tuesday, 22 May 2012 17:59 (five years ago) Permalink

Over The Border is similar in feel to Teenage Winter but the lyrics aren't quite as clever. It's still a great song and as someone who loves New Order, Dexys and anything on Postcard I can't help but be moved by it.

Kitchen Person, Tuesday, 22 May 2012 18:10 (five years ago) Permalink

A lot of it seems leaden and heavy-handed, to me.

djh, Tuesday, 22 May 2012 22:53 (five years ago) Permalink

yeah, sigh. picks up near the end, dj is nearly great. over the border as a better finnisterre is offtm tho

johnny crunch, Wednesday, 23 May 2012 01:28 (five years ago) Permalink

Map for sale separately here:

Jeff W, Wednesday, 23 May 2012 17:34 (five years ago) Permalink

Actually that might be a different one - same idea though

Jeff W, Wednesday, 23 May 2012 17:39 (five years ago) Permalink

There is something profoundly weird about hearing a band with actual profile singing a song about your friends that goes to the extent of actually naming them.

Homosexual Satan Wasp (Matt DC), Wednesday, 23 May 2012 18:51 (five years ago) Permalink

The remix of DJ on the bonus disc is much better than the regular version. It sounds like real club music for starters. Or it somehow recreates the effect of a loud club in a way that is quite fun. The regular version is weirdly flat and quite boring to me. It's trying to be pop but it's like they haven't listened to what's in the charts these days. In the remix Sarah's voice is relegated to being more of a sound effect or just part of the mix, rather than leading the track. It's a good, druggy number.

I've only listened once straight through but overall I dislike the vibe of this album. It's partly because lots of it seems like an eternal re-write of Mario's Cafe or Mr Donut except the playfulness of those tracks has been stripped (or sounds forced) and everything is happening in the wistful past tense. Over The Border is embarrasing. Then there is so little of the diversity that made their earlier albums so interesting. Whither the likes of Railway Jam, Cool Kids of Death, Urban Clearway, etc? It's just song, song, song, song. Too much Cracknell.

Round about Good Humor they started segregating their more interesting material onto eps, remixes or special release albums, using the "real" albums for their most formal and carefully curated songwriting. Combined with the fact that they are apparently running out of things to say, their "real" albums have now become quite boring as a result.

everything, Wednesday, 23 May 2012 19:16 (five years ago) Permalink

The second disc is really quite enjoyable though. Pretty much no duds.

everything, Wednesday, 23 May 2012 19:17 (five years ago) Permalink

There is something profoundly weird about hearing a band with actual profile singing a song about your friends that goes to the extent of actually naming them.

i can't work out whether that's my favourite song on the album because of that or because it's the best song

kanye kardashian (lex pretend), Wednesday, 23 May 2012 20:27 (five years ago) Permalink

everything OTM - this is leaving me super cold and I quit listening after four or five tracks. A bummer.

mikebee (BATTAGS), Wednesday, 23 May 2012 21:55 (five years ago) Permalink

This album reminds me of Madonna

a parker full of poseys (Stevie D(eux)), Thursday, 24 May 2012 01:30 (five years ago) Permalink

But not of MDNA I hope (haven't listened yet)

Look at how funky he is! (jer.fairall), Thursday, 24 May 2012 01:45 (five years ago) Permalink

everything sorta OTM but still wrong. "DJ" is pop. It just doesn't sound like current chart-friendly pop. And why should it?

Re "Over The Border," I agree that the whole wistful nostalgia is by now a St Etienne cliche and starting to get a bit tedious. But in a song so good and beautifully crafted, I think they can be forgiven for it.

To me WAM is Saint Etienne leaving behind their "quirky" side a bit. I miss that side too, but I've always felt that sometimes it gets on the way. Sometimes. They are so, so great at straightforward pop that I don't see any problem with them doing an that an album of just that.

daavid, Thursday, 24 May 2012 02:30 (five years ago) Permalink

Finisterre aside, I haven't immediately taken to a Saint Etienne album on the first few listens since So Tough, so I'm not going to write this off yet. In fact, walking to work yesterday I had Last Days of Disco going round in my head quite a bit, so it is starting to grow on me I think.

DavidM, Thursday, 24 May 2012 07:02 (five years ago) Permalink

I haven't really given the main album a fair shake yet but I can't see me warming to it too much because of Sarah being smeared over everything so much. And the overall sepia-tinge in the album to be claustrophobic. Even a song called "Tonight" seems to be somehow set in the distant past. And they are trying to do a concept album but they forgot one of the rules of concept albums, which is that when you have a pompous spoken word bit like in Over The Border, the LAST thing you do is get the lead singer to read it. Obviously you get in a well-known actor or comedian such as Ewen MacGregor or David Mitchell to read it. The chorus bit is fine as it is though the wistfulness is terrific.

The second disc is really kicking my ass though. Especially the first three tracks which make me think how cool it would've been if they had the balls to make this the album proper.

everything, Thursday, 24 May 2012 07:24 (five years ago) Permalink

"real dance music"?

Here he is with the classic "Poème Électronique." Good track (Marcello Carlin), Thursday, 24 May 2012 10:22 (five years ago) Permalink

ya i think i officially like this album

funny-skrillex-bee_132455836669.gif (s1ocki), Thursday, 28 June 2012 15:32 (five years ago) Permalink

two months pass...

really gets better w/each listen imo. looking forward to the tour!

omar little, Monday, 24 September 2012 23:34 (five years ago) Permalink

This is their best album since So Tough, which after years of fruitless exploration on my part is a relief.

taking tiger mountain (up the butt) (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Monday, 24 September 2012 23:35 (five years ago) Permalink

i would give good humor a re-scr...re-listen. i feel like a lot of people aren't into it bc of st et expectations, it was my entry point and i think it's a pretty sweet album. more club 8 labrador swedish pop style than a st et album.

omar little, Monday, 24 September 2012 23:41 (five years ago) Permalink

Good Humor is outstanding.

timellison, Monday, 24 September 2012 23:50 (five years ago) Permalink

I like GH best of the post-ST records.

taking tiger mountain (up the butt) (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Monday, 24 September 2012 23:51 (five years ago) Permalink

Tales From Turnpike House is by far my favourite since So Tough, there are no bad songs on that album. Agree that Words & Music just gets better and better.

Kitchen Person, Tuesday, 25 September 2012 08:54 (five years ago) Permalink

aye.. there's a ballot coming up fairly soon, I believe.

Mark G, Tuesday, 25 September 2012 09:37 (five years ago) Permalink

Finistere for me - but admittedly I haven't heard the two last ones

licorice oratorio (baaderonixx), Tuesday, 25 September 2012 12:09 (five years ago) Permalink

Finally getting to see "What Have You Done Today, Mervyn Day?"

This is what I want Saint Etienne to sound like, to be like, these days.

djh, Wednesday, 26 September 2012 20:59 (five years ago) Permalink

bought a ticket 4 the boston show - excited! have nvr seem em live

johnny crunch, Wednesday, 26 September 2012 21:29 (five years ago) Permalink

two months pass...


The special "US" edition that's impossible to get in the UK unless you spend tons on ebay is, um, possible to get now.

Basically, the second CD is all-new (bar two) songs, about ten in total.

Mark G, Thursday, 29 November 2012 09:36 (four years ago) Permalink

Disappointed that I missed them when they were in town recently; I checked this album out after the poll and it's quite good, best I've heard since So Tough.

Vinnie, Thursday, 29 November 2012 14:19 (four years ago) Permalink

Heh, when those extra copies went on sale yesterday, the greedbag site instantly died and didn't come back for hours. Their limited edition fuckery is getting pretty tiresome. Four editions of the latest album, three with different track listings, two extremely difficult to buy... except on eBay, of course. It's 2012 guys... do pre-orders for the limited edition releases and press up enough to satisfy demand. It isn't hard.

the girl from spirea x (f. hazel), Thursday, 29 November 2012 17:26 (four years ago) Permalink

That Greedbag site was horrible, and you're right, girl from spirea x, the fuckery one must endure to receive their many limited releases is absurd. This isn't the first time that they couldn't handle the surge from users when offering something new, either. Quite a lot of us in the states didn't live anywhere near where the band was playing, and then to have to scurry for a copy of an album's worth of material from a band we've been following for more than two decades. They should work that out.

crustaceanrebel, Thursday, 29 November 2012 18:08 (four years ago) Permalink

I think it's things like this that make things like peer-to-peer filesharing ethically justifiable in certain circumstances.

goya cézanne (Stevie D(eux)), Thursday, 29 November 2012 18:14 (four years ago) Permalink

Absolutely, especially when you know a load of these were bought just to end up on ebay. Love the band, but not going to buy the same album twice.

fun loving and xtremely tolrant (Billy Dods), Thursday, 29 November 2012 18:17 (four years ago) Permalink

feel free to PM me if you are looking for those tracks.

skip, Thursday, 29 November 2012 19:38 (four years ago) Permalink

four months pass...

may not last long but someone put the whole special US edition on yt; i really love 'solid gold'


johnny crunch, Thursday, 25 April 2013 18:09 (four years ago) Permalink

I'm going to take this opportunity to remind everyone that a Masters at Work rmx of "Nothing Can Stop Us" exists:


hoda nkotb (Stevie D(eux)), Thursday, 25 April 2013 18:30 (four years ago) Permalink

one month passes...

Don't let those "some reviews" put you off, kraudive. Most of them are favourable (and that FACT one is completely OFFTM).

― daavid, Wednesday, May 30, 2012 7:00 PM (3 hours ago)

It was the FACT review a little, yes. But more really threads like this, containing comments from obvious fans of later albums who said they were underwhelmed. Of course, I'll make my own decision when I have time.

― kraudive, Wednesday, 30 May 2012 23:00 (11 months ago)

This is a lovely Saint Etienne album. It'd be good to read what people think a year or so in. It's sounding GREAT tonight, esp next to the Daft Punk that I've put it up against a lot this week. I love that also obv.

kraudive, Tuesday, 28 May 2013 00:52 (four years ago) Permalink

I like it a lot too. Its similar to their old stuff both in sound and "spirit" i think, and sort of stands out bc the vibe is very 90s. Great band.

Treeship, Tuesday, 28 May 2013 01:25 (four years ago) Permalink

X months later and this album makes me so happy. Much better than I initially thought.

brotherlovesdub, Tuesday, 28 May 2013 01:33 (four years ago) Permalink

This album could practically be an ilxor (of a certain age and place). And "Answer Song" is gigantic.

bentelec, Tuesday, 28 May 2013 02:00 (four years ago) Permalink


Mark G, Tuesday, 28 May 2013 08:56 (four years ago) Permalink

Damn i wish i put this on my iphone now. I want to hear it again.

Treeship, Tuesday, 28 May 2013 12:41 (four years ago) Permalink

After sitting with this for a while, it's not as good as I first thought. There's a few very strong songs (Tonight, When I Was 17) and several similar tracks that don't hit the same peaks. Also I don't usually complain about Autotune but it bothered me on this album - one thing I always loved about Sarah's voice was that bit of vulnerability when she wouldn't hit pitches perfectly, and I feel like it got Autotuned out? Not sure I would care if I wasn't so familiar with her voice from the pre-Autotune era.

Vinnie, Tuesday, 28 May 2013 13:39 (four years ago) Permalink

Never got into this. Usually love Saint Etienne.

djh, Tuesday, 28 May 2013 18:11 (four years ago) Permalink

Ditto. The bonus disc is everything I want from a Saint Etienne album and I think as a stand-alone album it would be up there with any of their best if you made a couple of minor changes here and there. But I can't even listen to the main disc all the way through - it leaves me feeling queazy. Hate all that record store/vinyl fetish/I heart the 70s subject matter and Crackers' delivery and the way her voice is recorded is a major turn off. There are some nice musical bits but also lots of annoying sections. I think it's pretty poor overall.

everything, Tuesday, 28 May 2013 19:19 (four years ago) Permalink

Been out of the loop for a while but I really liked this and dig the new Suede album as well./jackie_harvey

Oulipo Traces (on a Cigarette) (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 30 May 2013 05:12 (four years ago) Permalink

Yeah I still love this. I don't rate it quite as highly as Turnpike House but it's up there. (Suede album is also great)

Kitchen Person, Thursday, 30 May 2013 05:15 (four years ago) Permalink

two years pass...

this album is so beautiful

The burrito of ennui (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Saturday, 5 March 2016 20:50 (one year ago) Permalink


johnny crunch, Saturday, 5 March 2016 21:14 (one year ago) Permalink

one year passes...

this album rules and i find most of the discussion of it itt extremely confusing

ToddBonzalez (BradNelson), Monday, 17 April 2017 17:55 (seven months ago) Permalink

I relistened to this this weekend bcz of you and v much enjoyed it, so thank you

Fluffy Saint-Bernard (Stevie D(eux)), Monday, 17 April 2017 18:09 (seven months ago) Permalink

the more I think about it ,the more I feel W&M might actually be my favorite Saint Etienne album.

KevRus, Wednesday, 19 April 2017 00:43 (six months ago) Permalink

i was otm in this thread

nomar, Wednesday, 19 April 2017 01:42 (six months ago) Permalink

often "DJ" is my favorite track ever recorded by anybody

the Rain Man of nationalism. (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Wednesday, 19 April 2017 01:53 (six months ago) Permalink

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