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Belle and Sebastian - Storytelling

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Storytelling

Belle And Sebastian

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Much like the film Storytelling itself, which was drastically edited and censored before finally reaching theaters at a running time just short of 90 minutes, Belle & Sebastian's music for the movie barely appeared in the final cut. All of their work appears on Storytelling, for better or worse -- it's an occasionally jumbled, yet undeniably pleasant, collection that unsurprisingly feels like a hybrid of a proper Belle & Sebastian album and a more traditional film score. The strings, horns, and harmonicas that drive instrumental tracks like "Freak," "Night Walk," "Consuelo," and "Fuck This Shit" have a definite retro vibe that also extends to songs like "Wandering Alone" and "Black and White Unite," which sounds a bit like the band covering Simon & Garfunkel's soundtrack for The Graduate. Though some of the other songs, such as "I Don't Want to Play Football," are disappointingly short, more substantial songs like "Big John Shaft," the surprisingly upbeat "Scooby Driver," and the bouncy title track make the album worthwhile for die-hard Belle & Sebastian fans. The only real misstep is the inclusion of so much dialogue from the film -- it didn't work that well in the movie, and in this context it's especially distracting. In all, Storytelling is a frustrating release from Belle & Sebastian; it's not exactly a complete album, it's not as satisfying as their best EPs, and yet it displays enough of the group's charm that it's difficult to dismiss entirely.
© Heather Phares /TiVo

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Storytelling

Belle and Sebastian

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1
Fiction
00:02:32

Belle And Sebastian, MainArtist - Bob Kildea, AssociatedPerformer - Isobel Campbell, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Mick Cooke, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Tony Doogan, Producer - Christopher Thomas Geddes, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Richard William Colburn, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Sarah Ann Martin, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Stephen Thomas Jackson, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Stuart Lee Murdoch, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist

2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records 2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records

2
Freak
00:02:19

Belle And Sebastian, MainArtist - Isobel Campbell, ComposerLyricist - Mick Cooke, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Tony Doogan, Producer - Christopher Thomas Geddes, ComposerLyricist - Richard William Colburn, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Sarah Ann Martin, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Stephen Thomas Jackson, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Stuart Lee Murdoch, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist

2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records 2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records

3
Dialogue - Conan, Early Letterman
00:00:26

Belle And Sebastian, MainArtist - Mark Webber, AssociatedPerformer - Todd Solondz, Lyricist

2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records 2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records

4
Fuck This Shit
00:02:31

Belle And Sebastian, MainArtist - Isobel Campbell, ComposerLyricist - Mick Cooke, ComposerLyricist - Tony Doogan, Producer - Christopher Thomas Geddes, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Richard William Colburn, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Sarah Ann Martin, ComposerLyricist - Stephen Thomas Jackson, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Stuart Lee Murdoch, ComposerLyricist

2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records 2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records

5
Nightwalk
00:02:06

Belle And Sebastian, MainArtist - Isobel Campbell, ComposerLyricist - Mick Cooke, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Tony Doogan, Producer - Christopher Thomas Geddes, ComposerLyricist - Richard William Colburn, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Sarah Ann Martin, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Stephen Thomas Jackson, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Stuart Lee Murdoch, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist

2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records 2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records

6
Dialogue - Jersey's Where It's At
00:00:22

Unknown, AssociatedPerformer - Belle And Sebastian, MainArtist - Isobel Campbell, ComposerLyricist - Mick Cooke, ComposerLyricist - Christopher Thomas Geddes, ComposerLyricist - Richard William Colburn, ComposerLyricist - Sarah Ann Martin, ComposerLyricist - Stephen Thomas Jackson, ComposerLyricist - Stuart Lee Murdoch, ComposerLyricist

2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records 2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records

7
Black and White Unite
00:03:54

Belle And Sebastian, MainArtist - Bob Kildea, AssociatedPerformer - Isobel Campbell, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Mick Cooke, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Tony Doogan, Producer - Christopher Thomas Geddes, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Richard William Colburn, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Sarah Ann Martin, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Stephen Thomas Jackson, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Stuart Lee Murdoch, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist

2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records 2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records

8
Consuelo
00:02:55

Belle And Sebastian, MainArtist - Isobel Campbell, ComposerLyricist - Mick Cooke, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Christopher Thomas Geddes, ComposerLyricist - Richard William Colburn, ComposerLyricist - Sarah Ann Martin, ComposerLyricist - Stephen Thomas Jackson, ComposerLyricist - Stuart Lee Murdoch, ComposerLyricist

2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records 2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records

9
Dialogue - Toby
00:00:33

Belle And Sebastian, MainArtist - Paul Giamatti, AssociatedPerformer - Todd Solondz, Lyricist

2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records 2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records

10
Storytelling
00:03:01

Belle And Sebastian, MainArtist - Isobel Campbell, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Mick Cooke, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Tony Doogan, Producer - Christopher Thomas Geddes, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Richard William Colburn, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Sarah Ann Martin, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Stephen Thomas Jackson, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Stuart Lee Murdoch, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Andrea Kuypers, AssociatedPerformer

2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records 2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records

11
Dialogue - Class Rank
00:00:11

Unknown, AssociatedPerformer - Belle And Sebastian, MainArtist - Todd Solondz, Lyricist

2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records 2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records

12
I Don't Want To Play Football
00:00:57

Belle And Sebastian, MainArtist - Isobel Campbell, ComposerLyricist - Mick Cooke, ComposerLyricist - Christopher Thomas Geddes, ComposerLyricist - Richard William Colburn, ComposerLyricist - Sarah Ann Martin, ComposerLyricist - Stephen Thomas Jackson, ComposerLyricist - Stuart Lee Murdoch, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist

2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records 2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records

13
Consuelo Leaving
00:02:29

Belle And Sebastian, MainArtist - Isobel Campbell, ComposerLyricist - Mick Cooke, ComposerLyricist - Belle & Sebastian, AssociatedPerformer - Tony Doogan, Producer - Christopher Thomas Geddes, ComposerLyricist - Richard William Colburn, ComposerLyricist - Sarah Ann Martin, ComposerLyricist - Stephen Thomas Jackson, ComposerLyricist - Stuart Lee Murdoch, ComposerLyricist

2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records 2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records

14
Wandering Alone
00:02:38

Belle And Sebastian, MainArtist - Isobel Campbell, ComposerLyricist - Mick Cooke, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Tony Doogan, Producer - Christopher Thomas Geddes, ComposerLyricist - Richard William Colburn, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Sarah Ann Martin, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Stephen Thomas Jackson, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Stuart Lee Murdoch, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist

2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records 2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records

15
Dialogue - Mandingo Cliché
00:01:20

Unknown, AssociatedPerformer - Belle And Sebastian, MainArtist - Todd Solondz, Lyricist

2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records 2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records

16
Scooby Driver
00:01:13

Belle And Sebastian, MainArtist - Bob Kildea, AssociatedPerformer - Isobel Campbell, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Mick Cooke, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Tony Doogan, Producer - Christopher Thomas Geddes, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Richard William Colburn, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Sarah Ann Martin, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Stephen Thomas Jackson, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Stuart Lee Murdoch, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist

2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records 2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records

17
Fiction Reprise
00:01:22

Belle And Sebastian, MainArtist - Isobel Campbell, ComposerLyricist - Mick Cooke, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Tony Doogan, Producer - Christopher Thomas Geddes, ComposerLyricist - Richard William Colburn, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Sarah Ann Martin, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Stephen Thomas Jackson, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Stuart Lee Murdoch, ComposerLyricist

2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records 2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records

18
Big John Shaft
00:03:55

Belle And Sebastian, MainArtist - Isobel Campbell, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Mick Cooke, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Tony Doogan, Producer - Cheryl Crockett, AssociatedPerformer - Christopher Thomas Geddes, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Richard William Colburn, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Sarah Ann Martin, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Stephen Thomas Jackson, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Stuart Lee Murdoch, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Alastair Savage, AssociatedPerformer - Gillian Risi, AssociatedPerformer - Mary Ward, AssociatedPerformer - Dervilagh Cooper, AssociatedPerformer - Jenny Divers, AssociatedPerformer - Kenneth Broom, AssociatedPerformer

2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records 2002 Jeepster Recordings under exclusive license to Matador Records

Album Description

Much like the film Storytelling itself, which was drastically edited and censored before finally reaching theaters at a running time just short of 90 minutes, Belle & Sebastian's music for the movie barely appeared in the final cut. All of their work appears on Storytelling, for better or worse -- it's an occasionally jumbled, yet undeniably pleasant, collection that unsurprisingly feels like a hybrid of a proper Belle & Sebastian album and a more traditional film score. The strings, horns, and harmonicas that drive instrumental tracks like "Freak," "Night Walk," "Consuelo," and "Fuck This Shit" have a definite retro vibe that also extends to songs like "Wandering Alone" and "Black and White Unite," which sounds a bit like the band covering Simon & Garfunkel's soundtrack for The Graduate. Though some of the other songs, such as "I Don't Want to Play Football," are disappointingly short, more substantial songs like "Big John Shaft," the surprisingly upbeat "Scooby Driver," and the bouncy title track make the album worthwhile for die-hard Belle & Sebastian fans. The only real misstep is the inclusion of so much dialogue from the film -- it didn't work that well in the movie, and in this context it's especially distracting. In all, Storytelling is a frustrating release from Belle & Sebastian; it's not exactly a complete album, it's not as satisfying as their best EPs, and yet it displays enough of the group's charm that it's difficult to dismiss entirely.
© Heather Phares /TiVo

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