Categories
Vinyl

Vinyl love: Camera Obscura “My maudlin career”

(Vinyl Love is a series of posts that quite simply lists, describes, and displays the pieces in my growing vinyl collection. You can bet that each record was given a spin during the drafting of each corresponding post.)

Artist: Camera Obscura
Album Title: My maudlin career
Year released: 2009
Details: Black vinyl, gatefold sleeve

The skinny: For part three of this mini Vinyl Love series on Scottish indie pop band Camera Obscura, we have their fourth record and the first on 4AD, “My maudlin career”. After the success of “Let’s get out of this country”, the group decided to once again work with that album’s producer, Jari Haapalainen, and though the aesthetic and quality is similar, it’s far from being a lazy reproduction. Yet as much as I love all the delicious heartbreak, the original pressing of this album actually only came to be a part of my collection almost two years ago. It came to me on one of my last ever visits to the brick and mortar record stores in Toronto. I haven’t gotten to the Big Smoke as often as I would have liked in the last year and a half (for obvious reasons) and none of the few times that I did have afforded the opportunity to visit the shops. Things are looking up, though, and I’m feeling that those happy times will return soon… but I digress. This is an excellent album that gets the nostalgia flowing so it’s worth another spin.

Standout track: “French navy”

Categories
Vinyl

Vinyl love: Camera Obscura “Let’s get out of this country”

(Vinyl Love is a series of posts that quite simply lists, describes, and displays the pieces in my growing vinyl collection. You can bet that each record was given a spin during the drafting of each corresponding post.)

Artist: Camera Obscura
Album Title: Let’s get out of this country
Year released: 2006
Year reissued: 2009
Details: Black vinyl, 180 gram

The skinny: For their third album, Camera Obscura really did as the title suggested and got out of Scotland, travelling to Sweden to record it with producer Jari Haapalainen. They really wanted to shake things up after founding member John Henderson had left following the recording and touring cycle of their previous record. All of the tracks on this album were written and sung by Tracyanne Campbell, giving the band a static face and sound. The twee aesthetic is still there but there’s definitely a 60s motown influence about the whole proceedings. Indeed, “Let’s get out of this country” was where the band really built their name and I was lucky to score a copy of this reissue off Amazon at a decent price before they all disappeared. It hasn’t been reissued since and to get a copy of my favourite album by the band would cost me a heck of a lot more nowadays.

Standout track: “Lloyd, I’m ready to be heartbroken”

Categories
Vinyl

Vinyl love: Camera Obscura “Underachievers please try harder”

(Vinyl Love is a series of posts that quite simply lists, describes, and displays the pieces in my growing vinyl collection. You can bet that each record was given a spin during the drafting of each corresponding post.)

Artist: Camera Obscura
Album Title: Underachievers please try harder
Year released: 2003
Year reissued: 2008
Details: Black vinyl, remastered, 180 gram

The skinny: Given that it’s June and we are preparing to slip from Spring and into Summer, I thought it was time for a mini Vinyl Love series, one that featured a band that screams equal parts sunshine summer and wistful heartbreak sadness. Scotland’s Camera Obscura is exactly that, sporting a brand of twee indie pop shared by their perhaps more famous compatriots, Belle and Sebastian. In fact, I got into them with their second album, “Underachievers please try harder”, because of their connection to B&S frontman Stuart Murdoch. I did also enjoy the band’s debut, “Biggest bluest hi-fi”, but never did purchase it for my record collection so it is here that where we start our four part journey. This 180 gram reissue was released five years after the album’s initial release and the remastering is quite sweet. It is an album that flashes the potential of a band still finding its feet and yet, nonetheless exhibits some excellent tracks of note.

Standout track: “Suspended from class”