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Belle and Sebastian: Just a Modern Rock Story

3.48 of 5 stars 3.48  ·  rating details  ·  184 ratings  ·  17 reviews
In the eight years since their first release, Belle and Sebastian have grown from a secretive cult concern into one of the most beloved and revered pop’n’roll bands in the world. Intelligent and sensitive, witty and original, beautiful and bold, their music inspires the kind of devotion not seen since the The Smiths. Their continuing desire to push the boundaries of their...more
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published August 1st 2005 by St. Martin's Griffin
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El
Glasgow writer Paul Whitelaw offers the first Belle & Sebastian biography with his 2005 book. As a first band biography it is complete in discussing the band - both as individual band members as well as the band as a whole. Whitelaw interviewed most of the members of B&S and had access to some of Stuart Murdoch's correspondence. The problem with a lot of music biographies is that they are generally written by some of the biggest fans. On one hand this allows them access to a lot of the i...more
Rosie Ellen
Well… It kinda sucked. I was really into it at the start but the more I ‘learnt’ (it’s all pretty biased accounts of what happened so how much truth there is in it, I’m not 100%) about them, the more it kind of made me think, these guys are dicks. And I love Belle & Sebastian! I don’t want to hate them or think they’re stuck up, mean bastards. So yeah, this book really wasn’t what I was hoping it would be. Isobel comes off super badly in it, he writes her like she’s this absolute bratty chil...more
James
I liked Belle and Sebastian more before I knew anything about them.
Christopher
Paul Whitelaw's BELLE AND SEBASTIAN: Just a Modern Rock Story is a biography of the Scottish pop band who have eluded major commercial success, but built a rock-solid cult following since 1996. The book was published in 2005, not long after the release of their album DEAR CATASTROPHE WAITRESS. Whitelaw interviewed almost every members of the band past and former, and dedicates much space to the polemics that saw the departure of early members Stuart David and Isobel Campbell.

I expected this book...more
Mark Leta
It was a bit of a slog to get through, which surprised me being a bigger B & S fan. Some interesting bits about the nature of Stuart and Bel's relationship but hearing the full story here was in total somewhat boring. The band origin stuff to is intriguing but nothing that hasn't been covered in liner notes and an adoring music press a hundred times.

While the author offered some critique of their music and efforts, most of what we get comes off as fan-boy fawning. Back stories of songs and...more
Rachel Ann Brickner
Jun 24, 2008 Rachel Ann Brickner rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: earnest b&s fans
Shelves: music
I'm an ardent B&S fan and to be honest, I was a little disappointed with this book. I was grateful for the information Whitelaw gave, but his tone felt facetious to me and I was annoyed by how much he focused on the relationship between Stuart and Isobel. I definitely think it's a worthwhile read if you're a fan of the band, but I wouldn't read it based on literary merit. Maybe I'm being too critical considering I read it a few years ago. I guess I'll just have to read it again to see if my...more
Nathan
Feb 22, 2009 Nathan rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Camera Obscura fans
Shelves: music
At first, I found it difficult to get into this book, as it spent a great deal introducing the characters. I already knew the characters, but I just wanted to get into the story of it all. Once that took off, I was stuck, and I didn't want to put the entire thing down. It's like a bedroom story, to be shared only by those who spent their days wondering about in the world of Belle and Sebastian. It was a great visit.
Rory
i read this book for one reason: to gather more proof that the belle and sebastian's lead singer is, indeed, straight and will, therefore, one day probably want to make out with me.
Jeff Raymond
A surprisingly interesting rock bioabout one of the admittedly wimpiest bands I love. Sometimes these sort of things are...not good, but this one was fun and interesting. It was good!
Steven Coambs
Belle and Sebastian make me feel young and innocent. This book is written to evoke the same feeling. If you are a fan I would suggest their DVD "Fans Only"
Michelle
Fan writer. I only liked it when the writer wrote a little romantically about the brief relationship between Isobell and Stuart.
Davidhfinkel
Aug 17, 2007 Davidhfinkel rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: b&s fans
Shelves: davesdigsyo
very cool band biography. both member sections and release sections. essential for any b&s fan.
Ryan
Love this band, but this was a terrible attempt at a proper biography.
Meagan
Decent enough biography of my favorite band.
Anna
awful. favorite band, but this book was awful.
Janika
Jan 12, 2009 Janika marked it as to-read
love this band. should read this.
Brian
Great band, crap book.
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Belle and Sebastian. Una historia de Rock Moderna

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