Heat – Up A Tree
13th March 1999
Record Review

Belle & Sebastian bassist Stuart David makes his lo-fi solo debut.
With Scottish indie heroes Belle & Sebastian trouncing Steps and B*Witched to bag a Brit award, the timing seems perfect for their first solo offshoot. Except that Looper (bassist Stuart David with his wife and brother) are a far stranger proposition.  The template is David’s A Space Boy Dream, from the last B&S album: low-key vignettes atop gently funky breakbeats and soft, strummed guitars. The result is like a more palatable version of fellow Scots Arab Strap, peppered with delicate ballads (Quiet And Small), jazz (Columbo’s Car) and bizarrely jaunty big beat (Ballad Of Ray Suzuki). And all recorded for the price of a packet of fags by the sound of it. Essential it’s not, but David’s tender, guileless delivery and the music’s playful naiveté make Up A Tree uniquely charming.

Dorian Lynskey