Fiddly-diddly-dee, a new Belle And Sebastian LP. Days Of The Bagnold Summer might be an extremely Belle And Sebastian-type thing to call your record, but it’s actually not a title that the band came up with themselves. Rather, Days Of The Bagnold Summer is Simon Bird’s film of the same name (yes, him from The Inbetweeners), which is itself adapted from a graphic novel by Joff Winterhart. Bird wanted B&S’s 1996 tune ‘Get Me Away From Here I’m Dying’ for the movie, but the band went one better, re-recording both ‘Get Me Away…’ and ‘I Know Where The Summer Goes’ in addition to eleven new tunes.
Vinyl LP £15.49 OLE14551
LP on Matador.
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CD £11.49 OLE14552
CD on Matador.
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You know what you’re getting Belle and Sebastian. You get some impossibly twee indie pop, a couple wonderful songs, and a photo with a colour filter on it. And all those things are here on ‘Days of Bagnold Summer’ (if you’ve not seen, this time the artwork is blue), so it’s nice that this is actually a soundtrack for Simon Bird’s (Will from the Inbetweeners) new film. It’s nice, because it offers the band to fit their sound, honed over 25 years, into a slightly different context.
The band have always been able to capture atmosphere. Their music has long been wistful and melancholic, revelling in its domesticity and groundedness. They’re a good fit for the film then, which sees a mother try to reconnect with her teenage son after a divorce. It’s surprising that a band as defined by its vocalist, is able to maintain this same feeling even across its instrumental tracks.
The standouts of course, are the songs proper. Particularly the two that the band rerecorded, ‘I Know Where The Summer Goes’ and ‘Get Me Away From Here I’m Dying’. It’s interesting to see the band, some two decades after they wrote these songs, revisiting them. Stuart Murdoch’s vocals have of course matured, but it’s the addition of horns that makes them really pop. The other new songs are good, especially ‘Another Day, Another Night’ which sees Sarah Martin taking over vocal duties. Though they don’t quite match the heady highs of yore. How could they?
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