It seems only fitting that news filters through of a forthcoming Belle and Sebastian tour (and an album) on the same day as the list of the 2010 Mercury Music Prize is due to be announced - the Scottish twee-pop septet were nominated for one of the prizes in 2004 (for "Dear Catastrophe Waitress") and ex-member Isobel Campbell (with Mark Lanegan) had the nomination-nod the following year for "Ballad of the Broken Sea".
Belle and Sebastian are not fussed in such matters this year because they have an album to push. As yet untitled, the eighth studio set will appear later this year, but one thing is for sure, the band are out on the road in December with six live dates already confirmed, beginning with Gateshead on the 5th, Birmingham (6th), Manchester (7th), Bournemouth (9th), Leicester (14th) and finally Bristol (16th), with tickets costing around £20.
In addition to these dates, the group have also been busy curating the ATP Bowlie 2 festival in Minehead, running from 10th to 12th December. They have recently announced additional performers including Edwyn Collins (with Teenage Fanclub), Trembling Bells, Dirty Projectors, Crystal Castles and Foals. Pretty much all tickets are sold out but there are some 4-berth, 6-berth and 7-berth rooms with self-catering available, priced from £693 - £1286 for the three days.
Keep checking back here for any further additions to the ATP roster and Belle and Sebastian tour-dates (there just HAS to be a London gig coming up as well).