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Saint Etienne|I've Been Trying To Tell You

I've Been Trying To Tell You

Saint Etienne

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Twenty years and ten albums into a career as one of the most consistently rewarding English pop acts around, Saint Etienne have delivered a work that is brimming with a sense of finality. It's not so much that I've Been Trying to Tell You is mournful—it definitely is not—but more that every track on the album sounds like a dramatic, last-song-on-side-two statement of closure. The textures on this largely instrumental album all lean toward the sweepingly cinematic, which could be attributed somewhat to the collaborative presence of film and TV composer Gus Bousfield, who joins the core trio of Sarah Cracknell, Bob Stanley, and Pete Wiggs on a few of the songs. More likely, though, the mood is defined by the working materials the band used: the bulk of the album is composed of samples and sonics culled from the late '90s. While the era—in the UK at least—was one of prosperity and optimism, the mood recreated here is far more nostalgic and wistful. Stanley and Wiggs have proven to be remarkable curators of place-and-time-specific vibes on their ongoing series of compilations they've overseen for the Ace Records label, and that spot-on curatorial sense serves Saint Etienne quite well here. Instead of indulging in a straightforward recreation of a trance-pop wonderland, cuts like "Little K" and "Broad River" give the listener—most likely one well past their clubbing day—a warm, gauzy sense of the same blissful feeling from a night out back then. Trip-hop beats make their way into "Pond House" and glitchy ambience punctuates "I Remember It Well," yet both of these songs manage to be both challenging and disorienting in their presentation. It's a stunning feat that the group has accomplished here. In making an album that is both evocative of an era but respectful of the reality that time moves on, Saint Etienne have crafted a challenging and rewarding work that manages to be incredibly emotionally resonant on multiple levels. One hopes that I've Been Trying to Tell You isn't, in fact, a final statement from the band, but if it is, they will have gone out on an incredibly high note. © Jason Ferguson/Qobuz

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I've Been Trying To Tell You

Saint Etienne

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1
Music Again
00:05:45

Wiggs, Composer - STEWART, Composer - Cracknell, Composer - Saint Etienne, MainArtist - Stanley, Composer - Pete Wiggs, Producer - Bennet-Smith, Composer

2021 Saint Etienne Limited under exclusive licence to [PIAS] 2021 Saint Etienne Limited under exclusive licence to [PIAS]

2
Pond House
00:04:02

Wiggs, Composer - CLARK, Composer - Cracknell, Composer - Saint Etienne, Producer, MainArtist - Stanley, Composer - Wilder, Composer - Imbruglia, Composer - bousfield, Composer - Augustin Bousfield, Producer

2021 Saint Etienne Limited under exclusive licence to [PIAS] 2021 Saint Etienne Limited under exclusive licence to [PIAS]

3
Fonteyn
00:04:50

Wiggs, Composer - Tucker, Composer - Cracknell, Composer - Saint Etienne, MainArtist - Stanley, Composer - Pete Wiggs, Producer - Brammer, Composer - Baiyewu, Composer

2021 Saint Etienne Limited under exclusive licence to [PIAS] 2021 Saint Etienne Limited under exclusive licence to [PIAS]

4
Little K
00:05:45

Wiggs, Composer - Larsson, Composer - Cracknell, Composer - Saint Etienne, MainArtist - Jensen, Composer - Stanley, Composer - Pete Wiggs, Producer - Mumba, Composer

2021 Saint Etienne Limited under exclusive licence to [PIAS] 2021 Saint Etienne Limited under exclusive licence to [PIAS]

5
Blue Kite
00:04:51

Wiggs, Composer - Cracknell, Composer - Saint Etienne, MainArtist - Stanley, Composer - Pete Wiggs, Producer

2021 Saint Etienne Limited under exclusive licence to [PIAS] 2021 Saint Etienne Limited under exclusive licence to [PIAS]

6
I Remember It Well
00:03:50

Wiggs, Composer - Cracknell, Composer - Saint Etienne, Producer, MainArtist - Stanley, Composer - bousfield, Composer - Augustin Bousfield, Producer

2021 Saint Etienne Limited under exclusive licence to [PIAS] 2021 Saint Etienne Limited under exclusive licence to [PIAS]

7
Penlop
00:05:30

Broudie, Composer - Wiggs, Composer - Cracknell, Composer - Saint Etienne, MainArtist - Stanley, Composer - Pete Wiggs, Producer

2021 Saint Etienne Limited under exclusive licence to [PIAS] 2021 Saint Etienne Limited under exclusive licence to [PIAS]

8
Broad River
00:05:35

Wiggs, Composer - Cracknell, Composer - Saint Etienne, MainArtist - Hughes, Composer - Archer, Composer - Beck, Composer - Stanley, Composer - Pete Wiggs, Producer

2021 Saint Etienne Limited under exclusive licence to [PIAS] 2021 Saint Etienne Limited under exclusive licence to [PIAS]

Album Description

Twenty years and ten albums into a career as one of the most consistently rewarding English pop acts around, Saint Etienne have delivered a work that is brimming with a sense of finality. It's not so much that I've Been Trying to Tell You is mournful—it definitely is not—but more that every track on the album sounds like a dramatic, last-song-on-side-two statement of closure. The textures on this largely instrumental album all lean toward the sweepingly cinematic, which could be attributed somewhat to the collaborative presence of film and TV composer Gus Bousfield, who joins the core trio of Sarah Cracknell, Bob Stanley, and Pete Wiggs on a few of the songs. More likely, though, the mood is defined by the working materials the band used: the bulk of the album is composed of samples and sonics culled from the late '90s. While the era—in the UK at least—was one of prosperity and optimism, the mood recreated here is far more nostalgic and wistful. Stanley and Wiggs have proven to be remarkable curators of place-and-time-specific vibes on their ongoing series of compilations they've overseen for the Ace Records label, and that spot-on curatorial sense serves Saint Etienne quite well here. Instead of indulging in a straightforward recreation of a trance-pop wonderland, cuts like "Little K" and "Broad River" give the listener—most likely one well past their clubbing day—a warm, gauzy sense of the same blissful feeling from a night out back then. Trip-hop beats make their way into "Pond House" and glitchy ambience punctuates "I Remember It Well," yet both of these songs manage to be both challenging and disorienting in their presentation. It's a stunning feat that the group has accomplished here. In making an album that is both evocative of an era but respectful of the reality that time moves on, Saint Etienne have crafted a challenging and rewarding work that manages to be incredibly emotionally resonant on multiple levels. One hopes that I've Been Trying to Tell You isn't, in fact, a final statement from the band, but if it is, they will have gone out on an incredibly high note. © Jason Ferguson/Qobuz

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