The Boy With The Arab Strap

Jeepster Recordings Ltd
Release date
7 Sep 1998
Running length
12 tracks
Running time


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    Track     Duration Listeners
1 It Could Have Been a Brilliant Career 2:23 172,585
2 Sleep the Clock Around 4:57 214,925
3 Is It Wicked Not to Care? 3:22 139,536
4 Ease Your Feet in the Sea 3:32 182,909
5 A Summer Wasting 2:03 171,452
6 Seymour Stein 4:28 161,881
7 A Space Boy Dream 3:02 156,938
8 Dirty Dream Number Two 4:14 139,097
9 The Boy With the Arab Strap 5:14 329,714
10 Chickfactor 3:29 141,834
11 Simple Things 1:44 146,976
12 The Rollercoaster Ride 6:37 136,827

About this album

The Boy with the Arab Strap is the third album from the Scottish band Belle & Sebastian. The inspiration for the album’s name came from the band Arab Strap, who are also from Scotland and briefly toured with Belle & Sebastian. An Arab strap is a sexual device for retaining an erection. Arab Strap were reportedly less than pleased with their inclusion in the title of the album. When questioned about it, Arab Strap’s leader/singer, Aiden, said “They have a sense of humor.” Malcolm, the band’s instrumentalist, added, “Because Arab Strap is quite an interesting name. The words go well together. That’s why we chose it as a band name. We’re friends with them, but there’s a limit to putting someone else’s name on an album. They’re taking away something from us.” He also mentioned that the album had been confused as a collaboration between the bands.

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  • ajablagargala

    I've given this album a few chances, and other than Seymour Stein and the title track, I'm just not feeling it. I see that a lot of people like this album so It's kind of a shame that I don't

    31 Jan 11:48pm Reply
  • Elenlille

    Happy birthday! :)

    7 Sep 2014 Reply
  • mindbattery

    Of course If You're Feeling Sinister is my favourite, but this album will always seem as perfect to me because of tracks 3, 4, 5 and 12. Those songs blow my mind

    5 Oct 2013 Reply
  • cubbies4e

    Yeah, it was a .8 (.8!) So absurd. When it gets reissued I'm sure it'll get around a 9 because its great. Half of the songs on the album are classics.

    3 Jul 2013 Reply
  • Nessyliz

    I remember back in the day when Pitchfork gave this a super low score! It was so stupid. I love this record.

    19 Feb 2013 Reply
  • TheBeasley

    "I think Belle and Sebastian is a serious contender for the band with the most consistant discography." Agreed.

    8 Dec 2012 Reply
  • LizandraBr

    Bowwww!! Howww

    6 Jul 2012 Reply
  • foundtheirhome

    Very close with Sinister....but, my favorite B&S album.

    12 Jun 2012 Reply
  • stranging

    some songs are flawless (my favourite b&s songs), some are shit; but its still a pretty solid album.

    2 May 2012 Reply
  • bubba_ch

    ...well done hipsters. [3] If anyones interested, as mentioned earlier, it's not on the website anymore, but there's still the waybackmachine.

    21 Feb 2012 Reply
  • matt1337c

    Pleasant, but not nearly as strong melodically or lyrically compared to If You're Feeling Sinister or Tigermilk.

    12 Feb 2012 Reply
  • Kleber01z

    love this álbum cover

    25 Dec 2011 Reply
  • bongrouge

    I'm not sure if Sleep the Clock Around or A Summer Wasting is the best song.

    15 Sep 2011 Reply
  • Ztarven

    Sleep the Clock Around is the only song that really stood out to me, but the album as a whole is wonderful. I think Belle and Sebastian is a serious contender for the band with the most consistant discography.

    16 Aug 2011 Reply
  • audiot

    I think this is their best.

    26 Jul 2011 Reply
  • kelspooky

    Perfect in so many ways!

    26 Jun 2011 Reply
  • kbc246

    i think it's better than sinister. it's perfectly imperfect, and the highs are higher. such a joy to listen to. it will alway be one of my favorites.

    30 Mar 2011 Reply
  • Modestmilk

    I actually really enjoy this.

    6 Feb 2011 Reply
  • Modestmilk

    ......well done hipsters. [2]

    6 Feb 2011 Reply
  • Atmosphere-it

    they did? it isn't on the website.

    27 Jan 2011 Reply
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