'words and music by saint etienne' is the band's first new studio album for 7 years. the album refers to the 'strange magic' of pop. about the special alchemy that transforms even the most mundane of experiences - walking home with the headphones on at night, sitting in a bedroom with your friends in the day, getting ready to go out on the weekend - into a lingering moment of seamless enchantment, one that resonates for the rest of your life. from the distinctly english sonic collages of their groundbreaking debut 'foxbase alpha' through to the darker folk-inflected turns of 'tiger bay' and even the glacial electronic landscapes of 'sound of water', the history of pop has clearly had a powerful impression on the trio of pete wiggs, sarah cracknell and bob stanley, with the result being that for this, their ninth studio album, they have assembled what constitutes a long form aural essay explicitly exploring themes and memories triggered by music which has run through their entire body of work. 'words and music by saint etienne' is an album about 'how music affects your life. how it defines the way you see the world as a child, how it can get you through bad times in unexpected ways, and how songs you've known all your life can suddenly develop a new attachment, and hurt every time you hear them. more than how it affects and reflects your life though', he sums up, 'the album is about believing in music, living your life by its rules'.