The Face – Folk Implosion
01st April 1997

Belle & Sebastian are the product of botched capitalism – discuss.
“Well,” says Stuart Murdoch, “on my back-to-work training scheme, in a recording studio, instead of learning to use studio equipment or play bass like him out of Level 42, everyone used to play computer golf all day. And one girl would try and hit the ball as far out as possible. She said she was trying to find a wee village. “Rhoda” is kind of about her.”
To rewind a bit: Belle & Sebastian are a seven-strong group from Glasgow, led by the wispily-voiced Murdoch; the “botched capitalism” bit comes from the endlessly entertaining sleevenotes to their second album, “If You’re Feeling Sinister”; and the song “Rhoda” comes from their imminent EP, “Dog On Wheels”. B&S are the missing link between Nick Drake, Jarvis Cocker, and a small boy with a plastic synthesizer and toy trumpet. Last year they released two albums – with the first, the 1000-edition, vinyl-only “Tigermilk” now worth top dollar to anoraks who like, well, music by anoraks. As with B&S’s charmingly shambolic live outings, the songs seem the work of seven people living collectively in a dusty shed.
“We’re not a collective, we’re a combo,” states Chris Geddes, keyboard player and – you betcha – flares fanatic.
“Collectives shamble but combos rock,” he adds.

Craig McLean

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