Saint Etienne – “I’ve Got Your Music” video

British nouveau-retro electronic-pop trio Saint Etienne is back after a 7-year hiatus with its 8th studio album, the descriptively bland, but aptly titled Words and Music by Saint Etienne.  Released in May on Heavenly Records, this concept album of melodic dance-pop and fleet disco beats contains lyrics that read like pages from an ultimate pop music fan’s diary. Saint Etienne released an official statement about the album’s theme, explaining that its central motif is how music “…affects and reflects your life…”

Chanteuse Sarah Cracknell’s golden, softly spun honey vocals caress the ear as she proceeds to hit universal music fan highlights, like listening to tunes in a locked bedroom, discovering shiny new jewels and buried treasures at record stores and music fairs (Yes, this actually happened before the digital download divide.), hanging out a clubs with DJs spinning discs, and the communion of music and love that touches all of our lives.

Second single “I’ve Got Your Music” is a reflection of this sonic devotion.  Music masters Bob Stanley and Pete Wiggs display a deft pop adroitness throughout the song as ebullient electronics sparkle against an up-tempo dancefloor beat.  Sarah’s feathery, layered vocals waft on the buoyantly dancin’ air as she sings about music and how “…round ‘n’ round it goes / inside my head.”

The accompanying video released just last month is a love letter to music, with a variety of fans contributing footage they shot of themselves showcasing their most favorite albums – all in vinyl format with cover art proudly on display.  Sober to enthused adults, bored to bemused kids, and even cats and dogs participated in this oh-so-simple, but oh-so-right, heartfelt tribute to the albums they adore.

The fans appear in rooms, in front of their record collections, on rooftops and city streets, and in gardens and backyards.  The album montage opens on a high note, with Grace by Jeff Buckley, then continues to interest with an anglophile edge represented by the likes of The Smiths, Suede, Pulp, Pet Shop Boys, and, yes, Saint Etienne (What?  Nothing from The Cure, Depeche Mode, or My Bloody Valentine?  It can’t be!).  Eighties icons (and beyond) Madonna and Prince get their due, as well as disparate artists such as Kraftwerk, Public Enemy, Bjork, Led Zeppelin, and Erykah Badu (What?  No classics by Guns N’ Roses, Kate Bush, or Nirvana?  Unheard of!) .  Oldies, but perennial goodies like The Ronettes, The Beach Boys, ABBA, and Fleetwood Mac pop up, along with relative newbies like Belle and Sebastian and The Pains of Being Pure at Heart.  (What?  Nada from Muse, Lana Del Rey, or Queens of the Stone Age? Say it ain’t so!).

Sarah, Bob, and Pete have cameos in the video, which at first are hard to spot because viewer inclination is to focus on the albums and not on the fans themselves.  Pete has a fun time ‘monkeying around’ with his album cover… At one point a fan even sports a Saint Etienne T-shirt while holding up a disc titled Moog Power.


After viewing the video, the question then arises: What album would you be holding up?  Mine would be Hunting High and Low by a-ha, like the fan in the image above.  Pure pop perfection.

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