AOTY 2021

I've Been Trying To Tell You

Saint Etienne - I've Been Trying To Tell You
Critic Score
Based on 13 reviews
2021 Ratings: #115 / 673
User Score
Based on 158 ratings
2021 Ratings: #533
Liked by 6 people
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CRITIC REVIEWS

100
Albumism

Time and time again, Saint Etienne have affirmed their penchant for crafting songs and visuals that stimulate the heart, mind and soul, and I’ve Been Trying To Tell You holds true to their well-established blueprint.

90
AllMusic

It's rare for a band to have a new idea after being together for five years, let alone thirty. That Saint Etienne not only had a brilliant idea, but also made it come to life so fully and so beautifully, is nothing short of miraculous.

90
Spill Magazine

The fact that the trio recorded the album remotely, with none of them being in the studio at the same time is nowhere to be felt here.

80
Mojo

As an album, I’ve Been Irying To Tell You works wonderfully on many levels.

80
Uncut

Saint Etienne have sometimes been accused of cleverness at the expense of emotion but I'vе Been Trying To Tell You is immediate and soulful.

80
The Arts Desk

Their 10th album is concerned with what contemplation induces.

80
musicOMH

There’s no sudden rush or instantaneous hit, but that’s not the point. Its hazy, dreamlike and enveloping charms unfold anew with further layers of melancholic woozy, summery beauty each time, as you contemplate about contemplation.

80
Clash

A hugely impressive achievement, ‘I’ve Been Trying To Tell You’ is technically exquisite, while remaining incredibly difficult to pin down. A project to bathe in, rather than simply enjoy.

80
The Irish Times

It is a mid-tempo gem, emblematic of how pop music can be a kind of time travel, reminding us that we not only miss people and places, but a feeling.

70
The Line of Best Fit

Offsetting hopeful low tempo beats with borrowed R&B samples and field recordings, the record tiptoes on the edge of being dreamlike.

70
Northern Transmissions

Their sound has remained deceptively fresh over the years and with I’ve Been Trying To Tell You, they sound as confident and poised as ever.

69
Pitchfork

On their 10th studio album, the UK electro-pop heroes look back on the end of the 20th century, when hooks and choruses dissolved into blissed-out loops and vibe became paramount.

pressrg
69
Beautifully produced and sampled, but more or less self-effacing, formless—exceedingly pleasant, but without the distinctness of their best work.
lemuriams
66
The intention was very good, but it's hard to listen to this album as if it is muddy and the vocal that does not break above the music layer at all.
It's a nice listening experience when songs like "Broad River" and "I Remember It Well" roll in, but the rest of the songs are weaker.
bags
77
The magic of this one is on repetition. Would love to listen to it in a very long walk or while studying. P.S: great album cover.
CheapandLethal
60
Fairly uninspired
DareG
72
Aims high, but misses it's mark. A few tracks succeed with a dreamy, sentimental and introspective feel. Others fall flat and dull, suffering from lack of structure or center of interest

Standouts: Penlop, Broad River, Little K

Dropouts: Music Again, Blue Kite, I Remember It Well
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Contributions By
ThomYorke2, domvic, anztec, Novell_sx, bgod
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Track List

  1. Music Again
  2. Pond House
  3. Fonteyn
  4. Little K
  5. Blue Kite
  6. I Remember It Well
  7. Penlop
  8. Broad River

Year End Lists

#14/Uncut
#38/MOJO
#42/Rough Trade (UK)
/AllMusic
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Added on: July 27, 2021