Critically acclaimed indie rock band Belle and Sebastian have released a new album, and Rolling Stone Magazine has a positive review of it on its website. The album’s grandiose title “How to Solve Our Human Problems” is entirely in keeping with the band’s outlook and attitude, which is a combination of humorous and hopeful.
The review is a positive one and points out the band’s strength of being able to perform multiple styles of music. They’ve written songs that sound much like Thin Lizzy, for example, and ones that sound like vintage Motown, and pretty much all of them sound great. Stuart Murdoch, the band’s chief songwriter, is now in middle-age and is writing lyrics that speak to his generation.
The Rolling Stone piece includes a recent photo of the band – an unpretentious shot of the six musicians in the hills of their native Scotland. Personally, I like how Belle and Sebastian have always shown pride in coming from Scotland and haven’t tried to seem like a hip London act. Having said that, they’re also able to use settings such as downtown San Francisco in their lyrics to great effect. In short, they’re a band that represents where they’re from but have been around.
According to the review, this new record is much more in the pop vein of recent offerings than the pure indie of the act’s earliest efforts. As far as I’m concerned, this is great news because I think that the most recent lineup of Belle and Sebastian has come up with some of the catchiest tunes released since the Beatles broke up. Moreover, they’ve been consistently putting out music since the 1990s with absolutely no filler.