Monday, June 11, 2018


I first heard of Belle and Sebastian in one of my all time favourite films, High Fidelity. It's playing in the record store when Jack Black makes his fabulous entrance and pulls it off, calling it sad old man music, and puts on Walking on Sunshine. Great scene!

I remembered the name and then they started to appear everywhere, on the radio, in articles in magazines etc. Of course, they probably already were everywhere I just knew them now.

I really loved how upbeat - mostly - their songs were, really good catchy, jangly pop, and yet if you listened closely the lyrics were completely the opposite, melancholy and languishing, reflective and at times sad. Of course, some were uplifting. But their beats got in my head, you couldn't listen to them without tapping your foot.

I went on a mission to collect all their albums, and listened to everything, and just loved them.

And so, they toured and I had to go. But no one really knew them, fine I would go by myself I thought. But I sent some tracks to my bestie to listen to and she was in.

They played the Sydney Opera House and we made a weekend of it!

I wasn't really sure what to expect, I had heard live albums and they sounded good, but realised I hadn't really looked at much online.

We made our way to Opera House after a great meal, and took our seats a little early. I love to do this, and watch the crowd filling the area. It was a mixed crowd, but mostly middle aged indie types as you would expect.

There was no support and boom, they were on. They are a large band and had extra members and they sounded fabulous.

Stuart, the lead singer, who has battled mental illness on and off and writes these great songs, was amazing. I guess I didn't expect much, but he gave a really high exuberant performance, loads of dancing and energy which of course worked with the songs well.

The band were tight, looked like they were enjoying the experience and in all it was a fun night, loads of dancing or seat dancing and singing and smiling!

And then Stuart announced a special guest, Australian royalty, I couldn't begin to imagine who it was when the great Robert Forster ambled on stage. The crowd - myself included - went wild! He sang two songs with the band and it was terrific. An old 60s tune I had heard him talk about on the radio, and a recent solo number.

The next day I googled to see their relationship, they go way back and golf together, how wonderful!

Later Stuart danced his way into the audience, much to everyone's delight, and came closeish to us. Not the greatest of pics, but it was great!

They sang old stuff and new stuff, and it was just a happy occasion. We jiggled and danced and sang our way back to the hotel once it was over. So very glad we took the punt and saw them.

Here is the Setlist:

  • The Boy With the Arab Strap
  • I'm A Cuckoo
  • We Were Beautiful
  • She's Losing It
  • If She Wants Me
  • I Want the World to Stop
  • Sweet Dew lee
  • The Fox in the Snow
  • Little Lou, Ugly Jack, Prophet John
  • Jonathan David
  • Learn to Burn - Robert Forster
  • Rip It Up - Robert Forster
  • The State I Am In
  • Expectations
  • The Party Line
  • I Didn't See it Coming
  • Judy and the Dream of Horses
  • Get Me Away From Here, I'm Dying

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