the 1996 debut album from belle and sebastian. the record was originally available as a vinyl only release limited to 1,000 copies. the album was released as part of a college music business course and became a rare collectors album. it was reissued in 1999 to combat a flood of expensive bootlegs, the album shows that the band's later acclaim was not unfounded. nine of the 10 tracks feature main songwriter stuart murdoch's winsome vocals, a mix of acoustic and electric instrumentation and a grab-bag of pianos, horns, flutes, and hand claps. the odd one out of the bunch is 'electronic renaissance', an electronic keyboard knockabout that recalls depeche mode's more insistent moments from the vince clarke era. standouts among the other tracks are 'expectations,' the tale of a square peg at school who is "known for being strange / making life-size models of the velvet underground in clay," the lyrically wistful but musically charged 'she's losing it,' and 'i don't love anyone,' which references felt, a band belle and sebastian cites among its influences.
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