In the wake of his God Help The Girl project, Stuart Murdoch regroups with his Belle & Sebastian bandmates for a follow-up to 2006's The Life Pursuit. Write About Love is album number eight from the esteemed Scottish band, and is the product of a remarkably quick turnaround. Writing and pre-production work began as recently as February of this year and was followed by recording sessions with The Life Pursuit producer Tony Hoffer (who has also helmed albums from Air, Beck and Phoenix).
The results are reassuringly on-form, classic Belle & Sebastian, with few curveballs thrown. Write About Love gets underway with gusto, laying down the surprisingly robust pop of 'I Didn't See It Coming' and the heavily synth-fortified 'Come On Sister'. Typically beautiful ballads are on hand too, such as 'Calculating Bimbo' and 'Little Lou, Ugly Jack, Prophet John' which features a familiarly breathy vocal from Norah Jones. Another (rather less likely) guest vocalist crops up on the album's title track: actress Carey Mulligan, renowned for her starring role in An Education. Commencing with an almost Pete Townsend-like riff, this upbeat ode to the mundanity of office work might be about as rocking as B&S get, although the Britpoppy Stevie Jackson-penned 'I'm Not Living In The Real World' gives it a run for its money. A solid entry into the band's catalogue, Write About Love might not reinvent the band's sound or approach to writing, but nor is it likely to disappoint anyone.
RIYL Camera Obscura, Saint Etienne, The Cardigans
1. I Didn’t See It Coming
2. Come On Sister
3. Calculating Bimbo
4. I Want The World To Stop
5. Little Lou, Ugly Jack, Prophet John
6. Write About Love
7. I’m Not Living In The Real World
8. The Ghost Of Rockschool
9. Read The Blessed Pages
10. I Can See Your Future
11. Sunday’s Pretty Icons