'Dear Catastrophe Waitress' is the Trevor Horn produced sixth studio album from 2003. Chief songwriter Stuart Murdoch had clearly been listening to a lot of Randy Newman and Joe Jackson, along with a touch of Thin Lizzy, and Horn manages to meld these new influences with the trademark Belle and Sebastian sound.
'Step into My Office Baby' is orchestral pop with a cheeky, almost raucous bent. 'If She Wants Me' pulls off a flirtation with Orange Juice-style funk, while 'Stay Loose' could be Squeeze covering 'Space Oddity'. On the more traditional Belle and Sebastian songs (the title track, 'Wrapped Up in Books', live favourite 'Lord Anthony'), the ante is upped simply by the quality of songwriting, which is a match for anything from the 'Tigermilk' glory days.