I recently purchased Belle & Sebastian’s “The Life Pursuit”, released in late 2006. Belle and Sebastian are a Scottish Indie pop band and one of the most influential in the Indie music community. It was actually their album “Dear Catastrophe Waitress” (released in 2003) what turned me on to this band. The music is very poppy, catchy, full of happy melodies, and very well composed songs. It’s like a great combination of swinging 60’s hits, never revealed until now… then kind of songs that always put you in a good mood.
“The Blues are Still Blue” is truly one of the gems of this new album. It immediately kicks in to a bluesy guitar, and the lyrics are very clever. There are different variations to the chorus, which is what sticks the most and explains clearly what the song is about. One of them says:
”I left my washing in the launderette
You can put some money on it
You can place a little bet
That when I see my washing
The black will be grey
And the white will be grey
But the blues are still blue”
In other words, his washing (his problems… leaving them for a while) sometimes makes what was once black and white, go grey and then the lines blur. .But what makes you sad (blue) will still make you sad. You’ll probably love this song even more once you understand the lyrics.
The video is actually very funny and entertaining…
I find the song “I’m a Cuckoo”, one of the best from their previous album “Dear Catastrophe Waitress”. It’s about friendship, and starts with a conversation between two friends:
“I’m happy for you
You’ve made it hard for me
I counted on your company
You are staying with your friends tonight
I’m feeling sorry for myself
I keep taking everything to be a sign”
I understand it to be about a person who has only one friend or this is his best friend, but that person decided to hang out with other friends that the narrator doesn’t like or know.
At the end, he realizes that he has to move on and be independent, but it’s just so lonely to be on his own… something along those lines.
Watch the video so you can come up with your own conclusions. All their videos are made with an intentional vintage look, just so you know. So again…listen, absorb, and if you like what you hear… buy.
Here’s a bonus, “Step Into My Office” from their latest album: