Belle and Sebastian's "Tigermilk" was released earlier in their career for a project of Stuart Murdoch, the band's leader, vocalist and guitarist. The members of the band thought it best to keep the band on a small scale and planned to break up after releasing two albums. Assuming that it wouldn't be a big deal, the band recorded "Tigermilk" and had 1,000 copies pressed on vinyl. The record, however, became immensely popular in England through little more than word of mouth. In some places, copies of "Tigermilk" were selling for as much as 75 pounds. Because "Tigermilk" was only heard by a small number of people (it wasn't rereleased until some time later), "If You're Feeling Sinister" was essentially the group's first album for most people. Because of the success of "Tigermilk", the group decided to take the project a bit more seriously.
Belle and Sebastian
Stuart Murdoch - Vocals, Guitar, Songwriter
Sarah Martin - Violin
Chris Geddes - Keyboards
Stevie Jackson - Guitar
Stuart David - Bass
Richard Colburn - Drums
Isobel Campbell - Cello
Belle and Sebastian's second album could well be considered their masterpiece. On the other hand however, you have a band who have the ability to release quite a few great albums, which draws one conclusion. The band have no masterpiece. Instead they have quite a few, "If You're Feeling Sinister" being one of them. With his slightly odd sense of humour and intricate songs, Stuart Murdoch has his own unique style of songwriting. His lyrics are a little unusual and his use of instruments isn't the most conventional, yet at the same time, is not overly wierd. The listener who buys a Belle and Sebastian cd to have a cd of nice laid back pop music will find themselves richly rewarded. At the same time, someone who listens to the cd with intent to study the music will have a good time picking out all of the intricate parts throughout the songs.
Sometimes having many instruments in a band can overpower some people and bring others foward, but not in this band. The use of instruments on the album is superb.
The songs on this album are lovely, pretty tracks. With Stuart's soft and delicate voices and the arrangements of instruments, this is a cd that is easy to imagine playing in the background in a coffee shop or a library. It is rare with an album to have so many great songs, but this album achieves. There is simply not a bad song on the album and they are almost all equal in quality. Buy this album, listen to it and fall in love with it.
- Gorgeous melodies and instrumentation
- 'Different' lyrics
- A unique sound, without being wildly 'out there'
- None really
"The Stars Of Track And Field"
"Seeing Other People"
"If You're Feeling Sinister"
FINAL RATING: 4.5/5