Blur

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by Lyedecker, Jun 27, 2014.

  1. Lyedecker

    Lyedecker Forum Resident Thread Starter

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    Blur has been one of my favorite bands since I borrowed (stole, really) my sister's copies of The Great Escape and Parklife back in the mid 90's. When Blur (1997) was released, I was even more excited: my favorite britpop band tackling left field Pavementesque alt rock while retaining their quirky brit rock sensabilities. 13 simply left me floored. It's still one of my favorite albums of all time and provided the soundtrack for some difficult coming-of-age years. I later discovered their first two albums--not quite as good as everything from Parklife to 13, but the seeds of brilliance are still evident (they sound a bit like a cross between The Stone Roses and Morrissey's early solo stuff on Leisure and Modern Life is Rubbish. Think Tank is the only album I could do without (perhaps they're not the same band without Graham Coxon), although there were still a few really great tracks within.

    Anyway, of the music I listened to form the 90's, this is one of the few bands I still listen to on a semi-regular basis. I think what separates them from most of the other so-called britpop bands of the era is that they were never content or comfortable staying within the narrow confines of that genre. I only wish they had made more albums, but at least we have Graham Coxon's solo albums and Gorillaz.
     
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  2. raimiz1991inc

    raimiz1991inc Forum Resident

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    La Paz, Bolivia
    Blur is definitely in my top 5 favorite bands. Interesting, as Modern Life Is Rubbish is my favorite Blur album and in my opinion Think Tank might be their "smartest" album of the catalog. But I really love everything they've done, including the excellent b-sides, some true gems on that 10th anniversary box set. I agree, Leisure might be their weakest album, but nevertheless the shoegaze music made the album have its indispensable place in the discography. They still sound premature on that one, but Sing is one of my favorite songs. Their self titled album might be their magnum opus, incredibly strong album overshadowed in its entirety by the individuality of one song (Song 2). A real masterpiece.
     
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  3. innercircle

    innercircle Forum Resident

    Location:
    Monterrey, Mexico
    I am a Blur fan as well, an advice to you here, if you consider to yourself a Blur fan you SHOULD give a re-listening to Think Tank, Out Of Time, On The Way To The Club, and Jets are among my favorite tracks not only in Blur discography but in my entire music catalogue.
     
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  4. DrBeatle

    DrBeatle The Rock and Roll Chemist

    Location:
    Midwest via Boston
    always nice to see other Blur fans, been a massive one myself for almost 20 years now, even wrote and published two books about them. Definitely one of the best, if not the best, British bands of the 1990s.
     
  5. davidshirt

    davidshirt =^,,^=

    Location:
    Grand Terrace, CA
    They had a pretty good evolution as far as sound goes. Damon's new solo album is great from what I've heard.
     
  6. SJP

    SJP Forum Resident

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    Anaheim
    Ummmm, you can't be forgetting Damon's most excellent solo album???
     
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  7. theMess

    theMess Forum Resident

    Location:
    Kent, UK
    We should merge this thread into the other recent thread on this topic. Hopefully that will encourage more discussion.

    They are the greatest British band of the 90's IMO.
     
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  8. Lyedecker

    Lyedecker Forum Resident Thread Starter

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    I agree "Sing" is an incredible song.

    I will have to reexamine Think Tank!

    What are the titles? i might have to pick up copies of said books.

    Haven't heard it yet. Curious now.

    Mali Music is the only solo Albarn project I've heard. I loved it, although it was definitely more of a collaborative showcase than a spotlight on Damon.
     
  9. Lyedecker

    Lyedecker Forum Resident Thread Starter

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    Agreed. I searched for preexisting Blur threads but found none. It would be cool to do an "album by album" thing.
     
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  10. DrBeatle

    DrBeatle The Rock and Roll Chemist

    Location:
    Midwest via Boston
    They are called Black Book, there are two editions but the most recent one, from 2012, would be the one to get:
    http://www.amazon.com/Black-Book-Li...F8&qid=1403920377&sr=8-2&keywords=drew+athans

    I've seen Blur, Gorillaz, and Damon Albarn all live and all were fantastic. If you have a chance to see Damon at one of his concerts on this tour, I highly recommend! I wrote my experience seeing him a few weeks ago here in Boston: http://rnrchemist.blogspot.com/2014/06/damon-albarn-live-at-royale-boston-june.html

    (and also from when I saw Blur and Gorillaz: http://rnrchemist.blogspot.com/2014/06/preview-damon-albarn-at-royale-in.html)

    Blur and Damon's projects are my favorites of the post-classic rock era :cool:
     
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  11. The Demon

    The Demon Member

    Location:
    PA
    It never gets mentioned, but on the subject of Albarn solo material, his co-written score for Ravenous is brilliant. This was done (I believe) between 13 and Think Tank.

     
  12. Almost Simon

    Almost Simon Forum Resident

    Great band. Saw them a few times live. 1993 XFM concert in Finsbury Park (although that was just Damn/Graham performing acoustically.) Then Brixton in 1997 (I think,) and The Greatest Hits tour, Brighton in 1999 (I went the night before they played/filmed the Wembley Arena show "Singles Night.")

    Always great live. In fact one recommendation I have is the StarShaped DVD from the early 90's. When they were having a rough time, little success and releasing Modern Life Is Rubbish (very drunken but a good watch of a band developing.)

    Album wise I like all really. Not the biggest fan of The Great Escape nor the title track on Parklife but there's fart more good about Blur than there is bad.
     
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  13. BLUESJAZZMAN

    BLUESJAZZMAN I Love Blues, Jazz, Rock, My Son & Honest People

    Location:
    Essex , England.
    Great band. It's funny how some have said that "Leisure" is their least favourite album as it's my favourite!!!
     
  14. martinb

    martinb Forum Resident

    Another big Blur fan. Saw them live several times up to the end of the 90's.

    I'm ( sort of ) on the StarShaped DVD. During the performance of For Tomorrow, if you look close you can see a girl with red hair in the crowd, sat on some ones shoulders. Mine:).

    I wish we could get one more album from them.
     
  15. graystoke

    graystoke Forum Resident

    Big Blur fan. Love Modern Life Is Rubbish. It was great to finally hear a couple of the Andy Partridge-produced songs from the aborted sessions for the album (on the Blur 21 box). I saw them in 1997 and was looking forward to seeing them again finally in January this year but they unfortunately pulled out of the Big Day Out festivals shows. Fingers crossed they make it back here once Damon's finished touring his solo album.
     
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  16. Vern

    Vern Forum Resident

    Location:
    London
    I'm a Blur freak and they were my teenage obsession. I have their complete output of official releases, those on demos, compilation exclusives, everything. I love 99% of it.

    The first time I saw them was their b-sides gig at the Electric Ballroom in 1999, on a blistering hot day.

    Anyway, my favourite era is 1990-92, with Popscene being my favourite Blur song. I have framed their first 4 singles releases on cassette. Love the art and songs on these releases.

    [​IMG]
     
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  17. graystoke

    graystoke Forum Resident

    So do I. I quite liked their recent singles (The Puritan, Under The Westway and April Fools Day). I'm sure they have more to offer but I guess its too much for them to devote the time necessary to work up a complete album.
     
  18. Vern

    Vern Forum Resident

    Location:
    London
    Funnily enough I don't want them to release an new album. I firmly believe that they were of their time and that is how it should be. I simply can't see them achieving the same level of quality. Personally I think it's rare for a band to come back with a really solid release after ages away.
     
  19. mogwai rave

    mogwai rave Active Member

    Damon was fantastic live in London a few months ago. Also their first Hyde. Park gig was superb
     
  20. Vern

    Vern Forum Resident

    Location:
    London
    Damon's new album is rubbish. Really rubbish. :(
     
  21. Lyedecker

    Lyedecker Forum Resident Thread Starter

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    somewhere
    I will seek it out.

    I always loved their cover art.
     
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  22. JuanTCB

    JuanTCB Forum Resident

    Location:
    Brooklyn, NY
    Love 'em. Graham is the greatest guitarist of the last 30 years and Alex might very well be the most underrated bassist I can think of.

    My favorite album is Modern Life (namely, the U.S. version with "Popscene" and the early version of "Chemical World") but "Music Is My Radar" might be the coolest track they ever recorded.

    Killer live, too - I saw them in NYC in '97 and '99 and am still supremely annoyed they didn't make it back over here during the reunion years.
     
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  23. kinkling

    kinkling Forum Resident

    So is Modern Life.
     
  24. Lyedecker

    Lyedecker Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
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    [​IMG]
     
  25. Lyedecker

    Lyedecker Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
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    I agree. They get a fair deal of recognition for the craftmanship of great pop songs (usually focused on Albarn), but I don't generally see them appreciated for their general skills as musicians. Damon is also a good keyboardist and a decent guitarist in his own right.

    Coxon has also proven with his solo material that, even if less willing to experiment outside of the zone of pop and rock as Albarn, he is every bit as good at crafting catchy pop songs. I'm reminded a bit of when Matt Sharp did his Rentals side project, proving he could match Rivers Cuomo in the art of songwriting.
     
  26. mogwai rave

    mogwai rave Active Member

    Actually it isn't, it is very good. I guess if you are a big fan of Country House, you may not like it.
     
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  27. theMess

    theMess Forum Resident

    Location:
    Kent, UK
    I am a fan of Country House, but I don't dislike what I have heard of the latest Damon release. It gets better the more you listen to it.
     
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  28. Vern

    Vern Forum Resident

    Location:
    London
    Well there's hardly any point in arguing about it as taste is subjective, but compared to Albarn's other work I really do think it's poor. I also think it's an unfair comment to say that people who enjoy Country House won't enjoy this, almost as if they don't have to sensibility to like more solemn and morbid music.
     
  29. Lyedecker

    Lyedecker Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    somewhere
    I don't think Damon ever got over Justine.
     

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