Legendary Falkirk duo Arab Strap present a double album compilation celebrating with ‘20 songs for 20 years’, complementing a clutch of feverishly anticipated anniversary shows. Reflecting on a 20 year career that was as influential as it was controversial, the compilation highlights an extraordinary output that staunchly refused to conform to expectation. From the string-led sashay of ‘Shy Retirer’ to the piano-driven noir of ‘Love Detective’;
the lo-fi crunch of ‘The Clearing’ to the spartan electronica of ‘Rocket, Take Your Turn’, Arab Strap were a fearless and resolutely original proposition from the minute the band regaled us all with tales of their ‘First Big Weekend’ back in 1996. Here’s Aidan on the tracklisting for ‘Arab Strap’: “We chose 20 songs - one for each year since we started - and decided to split them into two lots of 10. The first disc’s a kind of best-of, but we just stuck to the more electronic stuff for this - there’s so many different sounds going on in Arab Strap albums, so we wanted to make it a more coherent whole. “The second disc’s filled with rarities from EPs and b-sides and out-takes and stuff, so there’s some louder rock stuff on there. I think all of these songs could’ve been on the albums they were recorded for, but sometimes you’re trying to tell a story and they just don’t fit. This disc is more live drums and rock-y too, so anyone looking for the noise should hopefully be satisfied.
Record Label: Chemikal Underground