Cinerama – Cinerama Holiday

What I Think of When I Think of This Artist (part 4)

Once David Gedge’s relationship with Sally Murrell ended, so did Cinerama (for the most part). Gedge simply soldiered on with the rest of the existing band as a reconstituted Wedding Present, which made sense, as the overall sound had been trending in that direction for some time. As with the previous singles collection, the title is a playful joke, as Cinerama Holiday was a 1955 documentary film.

What I Think of This Album

More of the tougher sounding, and therefore less interesting, Cinerama. And once again, David Gedge turns in a strong batch of songs, making exactly what the name of this band is matter that much less. Still. I liked the old Cinerama better.

This second singles compilation gathers the Disco Volante-related and pre-Torino singles (I think – this shit gets confusing), but of course was not released until after third studio album, Torino. “Wow” is pure Wedding Present, save for a flute part that is surprisingly well-integrated and is my favorite thing about this rave-up. There is more of the old Cinerama yet, as admirably displayed on “10 Denier,” both an advertisement of Gedge’s knowledge of hosiery and a realistic if cold-hearted review of an unfaithful boyfriend’s decision-making.

“Gigolo” avoids the easy joke, which would seem to be the only avenue realistically available to a song with that title, and instead expertly balances humor and pathos. “See Thru” takes us back to the Wedding Present sound, which is fine because this is a great fucking song (the xylophone is wonderful, though I don’t like the way Gedge pronounces “lingerie”). “Your Charms” splits the difference between Wedding Present churn and Cinerama orchestration, and makes it work, more or less. Murrell gets a rare spotlight turn on the dramatic “Reel 2, Dialogue 2.”

The Spanish language songs are atrocious, and “Superman” is too self-pitying even for me. There is a Carpenters cover – yawn.

Once again, Rachel Davies plays the violin, while the accordion is hefted by one Karen Cleave, presumably a relative of guitarist Simon Cleave. Steve Albini produced – oh, excuse me – recorded. At some point, I owned sophomore studio album Disco Volante but I abandoned it in favor of this collection.

The Best Thing About This Album

“10 Denier,” because I really liked the classic Cinerama sound.

Release Date

June, 2003

The Cover Art

This is highly reminiscent of Belle and Sebastian’s If You’re Feeling Sinister, which was released about seven years earlier. Except this one is significantly sexier. Still, not terribly original.

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