Saint Etienne announce new album ‘I’ve Been Trying To Tell You‘ due 10th September.
Listen to the first single, ‘Pond House
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Thirty years on from their groundbreaking debut Foxbase Alpha, the much-loved London trio Saint Etienne announce their 10th studio album I’ve Been Trying To Tell You slated for release on September 10th via Heavenly Recordings. The band share the first sound Pond House – an undulating collision of evocative beats and samples.  

The album was made largely from samples and sounds drawn from the years 1997-2001, a period that was topped and tailed by Labour’s election victory and the terrorist attack on the Twin Towers. Was the optimism of that era a lost golden age, or was it a period of naïvety, delusion and folly? The collective folk memory of any period differs from the lived reality. I’ve Been Trying To Tell You is an album about memory, how it works, how it tricks you and creates a dream-like state. It also taps into the way we think of our youth, a sense of place, and where we come from. 

For the first time, Saint Etienne didn’t record together in a studio. The album was completed remotely, in Hove (Pete Wiggs), Oxford (Sarah Cracknell) and Bradford (Bob Stanley), in collaboration with film and TV composer Gus Bousfield, who contributes to a number of tracks). 

“To me it’s about optimism, and the late nineties” Bob explains “and how memory is an unreliable narrator. Pete and Gus have done a properly amazing production job. I think it sounds gorgeous.” 

Sarah: “It’s the first sample driven album we’ve made since So Tough and it’s been a really refreshing experience, such fun! It’s both dreamy and atmospheric, late summer sounds.”

Pete: “We’ve really pulled apart and dived deep into the samples;  the concept and each of our interpretations of it have made this a very special sounding album, we hope you think so too.”

The album itself will be available on both black and clear vinyl editions as well as a single disc CD and a limited double disc CD/DVD edition which includes the album, the film and sleeve notes from socialist writer Owen Hatherley. ​​The artwork is by renowned graphic design agency M/M (Paris) (Yohji Yamamoto, Björk, Madonna). A number of formats can be pre-ordered here.

The special Heavenly edition of the album with a comes with a clear blue flexi disc and bonus track ‘Uncle Vibes’, exclusive to our Bandcamp and limited to 300 copies.

✧ The vinyl edition has now SOLD OUT. However, you can pre-order the download to receive the bonus track on release day via our Bandcamp page.


The album is accompanied by a specially-made film directed by the acclaimed photographer and film-maker Alasdair McLellan who also did all the stills photography for the record. There’s a whole lifetime’s worth of locations in there – Avebury, Portmeirion, Doncaster, Grangemouth as well as London. Evoking the era through the fog of memory, the resulting film is beautiful, hypnotic and all-enveloping. 

Alasdair says “My starting point was an interpretation of my memories from the time I first started to listen to Saint Etienne’s music. Of course, it is an interpretation of what I was doing then while looking back at it now. At that time, I was a bored teenager in a village near Doncaster, South Yorkshire; it was a place where very little happened. I now look back at that time as something quite idyllic – even the boredom seems idyllic – and a big part of its soundtrack was Saint Etienne.”

The film I’ve Been Trying To Tell You will premiere at NFT1 on the Southbank on 3rd September. Tickets go on sale to BFI members on Tuesday 3rd August and the general public on the Wednesday 4th August.

The premiere of I’ve Been Trying To Tell You will be accompanied by a whole weekend of The Films Of Saint Etienne at BFI Southbank between the 3rd and 5th of September; seven films and a selection of shorts with most screenings accompanied by Q&As with Saint Etienne and their collaborators.