Central Reservation (album)

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Not to be confused with the Grand Central Records album Central Reservations.
Central Reservation
Studio album by Beth Orton
Released 9 March 1999
Genre Folk, folktronica,[citation needed] trip hop
Length 58:50
Label Heavenly RecordsHVNLP 22
Producer Victor Van Vugt, Ben Watt, Mark Stent
Beth Orton chronology
Trailer Park
Central Reservation
Music sample

Central Reservation is the second studio album by English singer-songwriter Beth Orton, released 9 March 1999.

The album featured contributions from folk musician Terry Callier (with whom she also recorded the b-side "Lean on Me"), Dr. Robert and Ben Harper. Several tracks were also produced by Ben Watt of Everything But The Girl.

The album gave Orton a second Mercury Music Prize nomination, and won her Best Female at the BRIT Awards.

In 2014, British independent record label 3 Loop Music re-released the album as a 2CD Expanded Edition which included b-sides, original demos and live recordings.


Central Reservation was released on 9 March 1999, on Heavenly Records. It reached No. 17 on the UK Albums Chart and stayed on the chart for eight weeks.[1] It went to No. 34 on the ARIA albums chart in Australia,[2] No. 35 on the RIANZ albums chart in New Zealand[3] and No. 110 on the Billboard 200 chart in the United States.[4] It also went to No. 2 on the US Heatseekers albums chart.[5] The first single from the album was "Stolen Car" which was released on 13 March 1999. It peaked at No. 34 on the UK Singles Chart.[1]


Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4.5/5 stars[6]
The Austin Chronicle 4/5 stars[7]
Entertainment Weekly A−[8]
Los Angeles Times 3/4 stars[9]
Pitchfork Media (8.9/10)[10]
Rolling Stone 3.5/5 stars[11]
Rolling Stone 4/5 stars[12]

Central Reservation received generally positive reviews from critics. Jason Ankeny of Allmusic gave the album a rating of 4.5 stars out of 5 and called it "stunning".[6]

Orton won the award for British Female Solo at the 2000 BRIT Awards.[13] The album is included in the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die. It's her only album to do so.

Track listing[edit]

All songs written and composed by Beth Orton

No. Title Producer(s) Length
1. "Stolen Car"   Victor Van Vugt 4:16
2. "Sweetest Decline"   Victor Van Vugt 4:04
3. "Couldn't Cause Me Harm"   Victor Van Vugt 4:48
4. "So Much More"   Victor Van Vugt 5:41
5. "Pass in Time"   Bruce Robert Howard 7:17
6. "Central Reservation"   Mark Stent 4:50
7. "Stars All Seem To Weep"   Ben Watt 4:39
8. "Love Like Laughter"   Victor Van Vugt 3:06
9. "Blood Red River"   David Roback 4:15
10. "Devil Song"   David Roback 5:04
11. "Feel To Believe"   Beth Orton 4:02
12. "Central Reservation (The Then Again Version)"   Ben Watt 4:00

Bonus tracks[edit]

Japanese edition

No. Title Producer(s) Length
13. "Precious Maybe"   Beth Orton 4:02

Australian edition

No. Title Producer(s) Length
13. "Precious Maybe"   Beth Orton 4:02
14. "Best Bit"   Youth 4:03
15. "Central Reservation (Spiritual Life / Ibadan Edit)" (Remix by Jerome Sydenham , Joe Claussell) Beth Orton 4:04
16. "Central Reservation (William Orbit Remix)" (Remix by William Orbit) Beth Orton 4:43



Chart Peak
Australian ARIA Albums Chart 37[2]
New Zealand RIANZ Albums Chart 35[3]
UK Albums Chart 17[1]
US Billboard 200 110[4]
Year Title Chart peak positions
1999 "Stolen Car" 34
"Central Reservation" 37


  1. ^ a b c d "Beth Orton", The Official Charts Company, retrieved 1 September 2010 
  2. ^ a b "Beth Orton — Central Reservation", Australian charts portal (Hung Medien), retrieved 1 September 2010 
  3. ^ a b "Beth Orton — Central Reservation", New Zealand charts portal (Hung Median), retrieved 1 September 2010 
  4. ^ a b "Central Reservation — Beth Orton", Billboard (Nielsen Company), retrieved 1 September 2010 
  5. ^ "Central Reservation > Charts & Awards", Allmusic (Rovi Corporation), retrieved 7 September 2010 
  6. ^ a b Ankeny, Jason, "Central Reservation > Review", Allmusic (Rovi Corporation), retrieved 1 September 2010 
  7. ^ Savlov, Marc (1998–1999), "SXSW Record Reviews", The Austin Chronicle (Austin Chronicle Corp.), retrieved 1 September 2010 
  8. ^ Brunner, Rob (26 March 1999), "Central Reservation", Entertainment Weekly (Time Inc.), retrieved 1 September 2010 
  9. ^ Hilburn, Robert (12 March 1999), "Record Rack: A Hesitant Beth Orton Is Pulled in Two Directions", Los Angeles Times (Tribune Company), retrieved 1 September 2010 
  10. ^ Fowler, Shan, "Beth Orton: Central Reservation", Pitchfork Media (Pitchfork Media Inc.), archived from the original on 12 October 2009, retrieved 1 September 2010 
  11. ^ Sheffield, Rob (18 March 1999), "Beth Orton: Central Reservation", Rolling Stone (Wenner Media LLC), archived from the original on 21 June 2008, retrieved 1 September 2010 
  12. ^ (2004). Books.google.com. Retrieved 30 December 2011. 
  13. ^ Sturges, Fiona (28 March 2003), "Beth Orton: No More Reservations", The Independent (Independent Print Limited), retrieved 7 September 2010 
  14. ^ a b c "Central Reservation > Credits", Allmusic (Rovi Corporation), retrieved 1 September 2010