Thursday, April 23, 2009

Laid Off Loser Album of the Day: "My Maudlin Career"

Camera Obscura

Fucking great title for an album.

When Camera Obscura first emerged from the Scottish underground around the turn of the century, they came on like a female-fronted version of fellow Glaswegians Belle and Sebastian. Stuart Murdoch and Co.'s influence was almost painfully overt, but it mattered little: Camera Obscura quickly proved themselves a worthy sister band.

Then something happened: Belle and Sebastian, the greatest Scottish band from 1996 to 2002, started sucking. It was around the time of the Storytelling soundtrack, and the suckitude only escalated with the super-slick, super-poppy Dear Catastrophe Waitress, the album with which Belle and Sebastian started sounding like a caricature of themselves. They've yet to find their way back.

Camera Obscura, thankfully, never strayed too far from the twee chamber pop sound that endeared Scottish indie rock to the world in the first place. And from the opening lines of My Maudlin Career — "Spent a week in a dusty library/Waiting for some words to jump at me" — it's clear that all the lovelorn navel-gazing remains intact. That's as comforting as a tattered thrift store sweater.

No comments:

Post a Comment