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Blue Lights on the Runway

Bell X1Audio CD
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)

Price: $12.56 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o
 : Includes FREE MP3 version of this album.
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Amazon Price New from Used from
MP3 Music, 10 Songs, 2009 $6.49  
Audio CD, 2009 $12.56  
Vinyl, 2009 $19.58  

Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.

Song Title Time Price
listen  1. The Ribs of a Broken Umbrella 5:27$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  2. How Your Heart Is Wired 6:13$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  3. The Great Defector 4:39$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  4. Blow Ins 4:35$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  5. Amelia 6:58$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  6. A Better Band 6:35$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  7. Breastfed 4:11$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  8. Light Catches Your Face 5:43$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  9. One Stringed Harp 5:12$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen10. The Curtains are Twitchin' 5:08$0.99  Buy MP3 

Amazon's Bell X1 Store


Image of album by Bell X1


Image of Bell X1


Sugar High


“Sgt Pepper’s killed music!” Bell X1 frontman Paul Noonan is laughing down the phone from Dublin. “Ian Stewart said so. Wonderful as it is, it encouraged people to use the studio as an instrument, to faff away in there to their heart’s content. Instead of having their shit together before they went in, and to use the studio take a good photograph of where ... Read more in Amazon's Bell X1 Store

Visit Amazon's Bell X1 Store
for 12 albums, 10 photos, 4 videos, and 3 full streaming songs.

Special Offers and Product Promotions

Frequently Bought Together

Blue Lights on the Runway + Bloodless Coup + Flock
Price for all three: $40.21

Buy the selected items together
  • Bloodless Coup $15.65
  • Flock $12.00

Product Details

  • Audio CD (March 3, 2009)
  • Original Release Date: 2009
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Yep Roc Records
  • ASIN: B001PPGAS0
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #150,346 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

After critical raves, three national tours and multiple late-night TV bookings surrounding their break out album Flock, Irish band Bell X1 is back with the ambitious and cutting Blue Lights on the Runway. Their second album on Yep Roc records, BLOTR belies a synth-based metamorphosis for the group Paste Magazine called 'one of Ireland's greatest bands.' The central creative trio of Paul Noonan, Dave Geraghty and Dominic Phillips retained the melody-focused approach of their first album but expanded their sound through the addition of glitchy electronic nuances ('The Ribs of a Broken Umbrella') crunching, prominent guitars ('Breastfed') and glittery art pop ('The Great Defector'). Noonan's gorgeous ballad 'The Light Catches Your Face' anchors the work, exemplifying the emotional gamut fans have come to expect from the versatile rockers. Touring, licensing and the excitement of their now legendary rabid fans are sure to combine for an even greater swell of success for Bell X1 in 2009. Quite literally, Blue Lights on the Runway will make the take-off of a long, rich career.


There's much more than a ghost in the high-performance machine that is this acclaimed Irish band's new album. Synths and samplers permeate the arrangements, but vibrant melodies and vigorous grooves are key to tracks such as The Great Defector and A Better Band (both evoking vintage Talking Heads) and more softly glowing fare. Blending soul and atmosphere, they frequently reach higher ground. Elysa Gardner --USA Today

Ironically for a band named after the first aircraft to shatter the sound barrier, the lads in Bell X1 have been a little slow transporting the success they ve enjoyed in their native Ireland across the teeming Atlantic to the United States. But while 2008 s Flock landed them a spot on Letterman and song placements on a number of TV shows (most notably a high-profile episode of The OC), their new record Blue Lights On The Runway has the potential to turn X1 into a stateside #1. The digitized percussion opening lead single 'How Your Heart Is Wired' quickly spills into a lush guitar riff that suggests a more adrenalized version of Radiohead s 'Talk Show Host.' Lead singer Paul Noonan is a savagely brilliant, left-field lyricist. You ll find a lump in your throat even when you don t know exactly what he s getting at. Longtime fans suffered a crushing blow when keyboardist/utility man Brian Crosby left the band in fall of 2008, but Bell X1 appears determined to not lose an ounce of momentum. --Paste Magazine

Like their former band-mate Damien Rice, this Irish trio know from beauty. Their fourth album is full of sweet, cushy melodies surrounded by well-arranged electronic textures: 'How Your Heart is Wired' where Paul Noonan whisper-croons over programmed drums and plush sound effects, will be ear candy to Coldplay fans; elsewhere, he spikes his lyrics with cheeky asides and references to Of Mice and Men. Blue Lights is uneven, but the good songs are really good: Over the straight-forward stomp of 'The Great Defector' Noonan sounds like a young David Byrne on the uplifting, carnivalesque chorus. --Rolling Stone

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Now introducing America to Bell X1 March 5, 2009
By B. Bell
Format:MP3 Music
They have done it. They topped Flock and now they will top the US market. It may take a song on a hit drama show, but America should get ready to meet Bell X1. I downloaded it the morning it came out and have not stopped lisenting to it. I am literally sitting in my cubical at work listening to it and wanting to just jump up and start jamin to songs like The Great Defector, Better Band, and The Ribs of a Broken Umbrella. Then chill to the songs like Light Catches Your Face.
The lyrics as usual are classic and one of a kind.
They have the ability to be the new version of The Talking Heads, without all of David Byrnes wackiness.
Great Job!!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Every song? How do they do that? April 14, 2009
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
I have lists of music scattered around my house - songs in every genre that I had to run to the radio to find out who it was, then jotted names down so I could find them later on the net or at Amazon for purchase. Maybe a half of one percent of new songs I hear make my lists, but Bell X1 has scored with every song I've heard. They didn't let me down with this album; every song is eminently worth listening to. They are terrific rockin' in the background while I work. They are maybe even better when I take the time to hear them intimately. Great instrumentation - beautiful music - on every cut, and lyrics provocative enough to keep me wondering...
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Maturity brings experimentation June 22, 2009
Format:MP3 Music
There may be derivative sounds on this album, but part of mature creativity is synthetic in nature. These gentleman build on derivations to make something new, hummable, danceable, and beautiful. You, who gave this music one star and proclaimed the demise of Bell X1, surely did not give this a careful listen. These songs are well-crafted, cleverly arranged, and well-produced, and will hold up to tight scrutiny and critical analysis. Listen. It's all you need to do to appreciate this art.
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5.0 out of 5 stars grand work, boys July 30, 2009
By max92
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
First off, thanks to Sirius station the Spectrum for having "The Great Defector" in heavy rotation over the last several weeks - would never have heard of these guys but for the Spectrum. This album is good and ...different which is the greater compliment in this age of overwrought power ballad vocals a la The Fray and weed mellow acoustic dribble by the likes of Jack Johnson masquerading as alternative rock. The influence of the Talking Heads is evident, as well as The Arcade Fire, but it would be unfair to say this album is entirely derivative. The elegant and sweet slower numbers like "Blow Ins" and great storytelling of a song like "Amelia" owe nothing to TH or AF. I love the punchy extended jams that round out songs like "The Way Your Heart is Wired" and "A Better Band". Weird to read that Damien Rice was a member of this band in a previous incarnation (the band, not Rice). I think they dodged a bullet there; Rice is way too earnest (and just damn annoying, IMHO). He would have robbed the Bells of their wonderful sense of humor displayed in their quirky lyrics. The album is just really enjoyable, give it a listen.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Complex, Fun, and a Bit Wistful October 6, 2009
Format:MP3 Music|Verified Purchase
If the only song you heard on this record was "The Great Defector," you'd be getting the wrong idea about the sound. Sure, that particular song evokes Talking Heads, but the rest of the album has a much more introspective, almost sentimental feel to it. The lyrics are completely fresh and extremely well-written. The songs are both whimsical and highly complex musically. This band is truly excellent and I hope they visit us in Seattle when they tour. Buy this record!! You won't regret it.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Great Music February 10, 2010
By Dean K
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
This band must have listened to a Lot of Talking Heads, you can hear the influence. The music is great and although they have been around for sometime it is not until recent times that I had heard their music. Thanks to WFUV. I would reccomend for anybody who enjoys listenting to all types of music - adult alternative. This is not loud obnoxious music
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