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Belle & Sebastian

The BBC Sessions

A cherry-picked collection of this indie-rock band’s best, the two-disk BBC Sessions will be snapped up by devoted fans in no time. Whilst the song selection doesn’t divert much from the original studio recordings, it’s always nice to have your favorites play one after the other -- making the BBC Sessions the ultimate "best of". Having said that, there are a few rarities from a 2001 session including “Shoot The Sexual Athlete” and “Nothing in the Silence” which was sung by Isobel Campbell shortly before she left the band.

The two exceptions to the rule come with new renditions of “Wrong Love” and “Lazy Jane”. “Lazy Jane” is softly spoken combined with an upbeat, poppy tempo. The interesting element is the triangle that is chimed throughout. “Wrong Love”, has a little "Oh My Clementine" feel to it initially -- a song that could perhaps be turned country should need be -- particularly with the harmonica backing. But as it is (and that’s not country), the song works; the guitar keeps it grounded and the trumpet is a nice accent.

A second disc, which will accompany initial copies of the BBC Sessions, is a collaboration of December 21, 2001 recordings of a Christmas show in Belfast.
In the Essential Rock Discography, written by Martin Strong, Belle & Sebastian (named after French children’s book, Belle et Sebastian) was listed as the best Scottish band ever -- although they have only ever enjoyed limited commercial success with their wistful pop tunes.

Unfortunately there are no tour dates planned for 2008/2009 as yet and rumors of a hiatus are running rife -- but stay tuned.

Rating: 3 out of 5 stars