It's always reassuring to know that, in amongst all these wonderful new bands, old favourites can still pull out gems to make one look back, smile, then look forward and smile even more. I tend to anticipate new songs by old favourites because they draw me back to old tracks I might not have listened to all that much, while also drawing forth new excitement at glossy new tunes to fawn over. Cases in point: Saint Etienne and Camera Obscura.
Saint Etienne have returned to shimmering disco form with "Method of Modern Love", which you can stream from their Myspace page. I'll admit, I haven't really listened to many Saint Etienne releases since 1998's Good Humour, and why they feel the need to release new best-of compilations when Too Young To Die serves as the most perfect artefact of their luminous early singles beguiles me. Anyway, I might have to revisit my views after this, because this song makes me want to don some lurex and glitter eyeshadow and swan my way across electro dancefloors everywhere. Not only does Sarah Cracknell remain one of the most beautiful women in modern music, but her gorgeous vocals never fail to sweep me away. As a 13-year-old suburban Queensland girl, I could but dream of looking as glamorous as Sarah in her long, sweeping fur coat in 'The Bad Photographer' film clip. Years later, I'm still envying her timeless disco glamour.
Not content to send my hazel eyes green, I also observed this on Saint Etienne's news page:
If you are in any of these cities, make me incredibly jealous and attend this show. Look, Lawrence is supporting, too! What, oh, what could be better than this? Nothing, nothing, nothing! It would be amazing to hear 'Carnt Sleep' and 'Nothing Can Stop Us' live. Sigh. Amazing.
Further north, Glasgow's divine Camera Obscura will release My Maudlin Career in April on their new label, 4AD. I wouldn't instantly associate Tracyanne Campbell's elegant, soul drenched pop with the classic 4AD sound of the Cocteau Twins and Lush, but I am sure her deft, gentle pop touch will glide Camera Obscura's sound in easily alongside this label's great dreamy sound history. You've no doubt heard the title track already, but if you haven't, stream it at their website and fall in love all over again. Sparkly and hazy with rich, rich vocals, it might not be as instantly gratifying as 'Lloyd, I'm Ready To Be Heartbroken', but boy, it's bound to etch its place in your consciousness after but a few listens. Again, I'd like to think I could be as sweetly sophisticated and beautiful as Tracyanne, but she is incomparable and untouchable, with an incredibly enviable dress collection. As it appears as though she is growing her hair longer, I might just have to bid my bob farewell and follow her long-locked lead.