Dear Bell X1

Moderator: Eoin

Dear Bell X1

Postby Darren » Wed Oct 20, 2010 1:20 am

Hello Bell X1,

As a long time fan, I just have to get this out of my system. Blue Lights On The Runway was a very average album. I don't know what it was but it just felt empty and dense. Alright you had 3 good songs on it. They were the first 3 opening tracks. After that it just goes to the dogs. Blow Ins is like a song that never gets going. Amelia sounds like it was done in one take. It drags on for far too long and is rather dull. A better band had potential, it just seems far too controlled. Breastfed should have stayed Rockridge. A b-side at best. Light Catches Your Face is decent. One Stringed Harp is a novelty song. The Curtains Are Twitchin' is mediocre. Some of the lyrics on these songs are really great though. I just feel you lost a certain edge to your music when Brian left. I have high hopes for the new album even if Velcro is a bit meh!

Signed,
Darren
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Re: Dear Bell X1

Postby shiv » Wed Oct 20, 2010 2:44 pm

I don't agree with alot of this. I got this album sent to me when I was travelling and it just felt like home.

Generally, when I get a new album by anyone, I take it apart song by song. Then I listen to it for a while and move on to something new and exciting.
But with Bellx1, they are my favourite band because I can identify with alot of what they write and over the years, they've soundtracked alot of good times.

I can also understand that sometimes you need to hear the song live to appreciate it which has changed my mind on other songs that weren't favourites.
(I never really like Natalie until they played it at Oxegen and now I can't remember why)
The Great Defector was the only song I knew when I saw them play Blue Lights material in November 2008 and I haven't seen them since. But I love this album.
When I finally got it, I played the great defector and better band over and over. It was weird knowing Rockridge and listening to Breastfed but the more I hear it, I prefer Breastfed.
I hated One Stringed Harp until one day, it came on and I was already in a good mood so I could enjoy it without cringing at 'that line'. And (I think I posted this before) one day, I was in a car and the IPOD was on random. We were driving from Alice Springs through the West MacDonnell ranges to the resort I worked on and the sun was setting. The Curtains Are Twitchin' came on and everyone was quiet taking in the music while watching this intense red stretch as far as the eye could see........i never would have picked that song for that moment but it was perfect.

I respect your opinion, and possibly my sentimentality is clouding my critical judgement but i'll always love this album for what it means to me :)
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Re: Dear Bell X1

Postby stasia_k » Wed Oct 20, 2010 4:55 pm

I agree that it's important to consider how these songs work live, rather than just take apart the album. For me, I wouldn't be as big of a fan if not for the live shows, and regarding specific songs - it took me awhile to appreciate a song like Blow Ins, but it's the kind of song that works best in this current acoustic setting.
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Re: Dear Bell X1

Postby Baglady » Mon Oct 25, 2010 3:17 am

Ballsy, Darren but yes, I am gonna to say that to an extent, I agree with a few of your comments. The magic sort of died for me when Blue Lights On The Runway came out. The album still fails to interest me.

Like Darren, there are a few songs that did grab me like 'How your heart is wired', 'Amelia( it does drag out but I really love the melody and I think the lyrics in this particular song are great), 'Light catches your face'. Better band is grand. Another way to try and explain my thinking of this album is that each song had potential to be great but I think that a few of them were a little self indulgent and lost some magic in the albums production. I just never got the concept of the album. It didn't really gell well, in my opinion. I saw the album live two years ago when it was first released (dec 2008??) and it did not come across well for me. I left that Vicars Street gig feeling kind of empty and very dissappointed because I've been a long time fan(7 years or so now). I've never been back to see the band live since and I am hoping the new album will excite me and encourage me to see them.

You are great musicians, please don't get me wrong! You've been a big inspiration for me when it comes to my own aspirations with music. 'Music in mouth' continues to weave it's magic and 'Flock' and 'Neither Am I' are amazing albums. I continue to listen to these albums and will always be full of compliments when it comes to Bellx1. But, feedback is always good and like Darren, I've been wanting to say it on here for a while.

I finish this post while listening to 'Amelia'. This is a great great song.
'I've never seen such a tall man in skinny jeans' Gowayanshite
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Re: Dear Bell X1

Postby Eoin » Mon Oct 25, 2010 3:37 am

stasia_k wrote:I agree that it's important to consider how these songs work live, rather than just take apart the album.


While not desiring to comment on this topic in general, I do feel the need to voice my disagreement with this particular idea. While a tour or live performance stands in the context of an album, the reverse is not true. The album is what it is, and if you can't like it without hearing the songs from it live, then it's not a good album in and of itself. The album will exist long after the touring is gone forever.
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Re: Dear Bell X1

Postby Gowayanshite » Sun Nov 07, 2010 7:36 pm

It pains me to say it.. (and not just because I don't want to agree with Darren :P ) but I agree with a lot of what he's saying.. Blue Lights doesn't do it for me.. I don't know if its because I've gotten older (24 last monday! :0 ) and am perhaps not as insanely mad about Bell X1... I think as with most talented irish bands out there they are hugely under rated and will never have great international success.. you have to wonder is their heart still in it?? I think Brian leaving hasn't helped.. he was great.. The Nov 2008 Vicar street gig was very poor.. put me off their live gigs.. I'll be there this Thursday.. second row from the front baby!! :D Hoping that the new stuff along with golden oldies will rekindle some of that bellx-magic that we all know is there..
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Re: Dear Bell X1

Postby stasia_k » Mon Nov 08, 2010 4:27 pm

I've been thinking about this since I last posted, and it's interesting to see the difference between long-time fans versus new (which really applies to any band). I discovered Bell X1 only 1.5 years ago with Blue Lights. I bought Flock the following day and probably do consider it their best, but regardless of that, they are still "shiny and new" to me. Will I still be a fan in another year and a half? I hope so; it would take a lot of disappointments to lose me :)
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Re: Dear Bell X1

Postby Mully » Wed Nov 10, 2010 2:02 pm

stasia_k wrote:I've been thinking about this since I last posted, and it's interesting to see the difference between long-time fans versus new (which really applies to any band). I discovered Bell X1 only 1.5 years ago with Blue Lights. I bought Flock the following day and probably do consider it their best, but regardless of that, they are still "shiny and new" to me. Will I still be a fan in another year and a half? I hope so; it would take a lot of disappointments to lose me :)


I'm an 'in for a penny, in for a pound' kind of guy, never been one to be a fan of albums (if you follow) Those folk who have various bands 'big album' & no other album by the band, you knwo the type ... Some of my favourite bands and singers have been around a long long time. In that time, they've released albums of various quality & personal preference, but I've stuck through with them & have been throughly rewarded by each & every one of them.

I've been into the bellies for 10yrs now, & I'm grateful that they haven't gone to the wayside like so many other bands that were on the scene at the same time in those early days. Every Bellies album is a treasure, some treasures are more valuable than others but are still worthy.
"The band that is now the core of BELL X1 but at the time had a lead singer called Damien Rice - and what became of them all - sank into obscurity no doubt!" Dan Hegarty, 2FM 2006 (with tongue firmly in cheek)
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