Saturday, February 25, 2012

My blur songs....

Oh well, that is ! Blur is back at the headlines since the announcement of the Closing Olympics Ceremony gig in Hyde Park, due on august 12th 2012 and my obsession is back on track (did it really weaken ?) !
You do know this chorus “last night a DJ saved my life”, thus you should understand my own chorus “2 decades ago, blur saved my musical life !”.
A bit of my blur life sum up :
Early spring 1990, my former boyfriend whom were nightclubbing a lot in London, was used to (audio) tape me some sounds from the bands he had listened to. On one expected tape he then sent me, I heard half a song and got chill. I don’t remember why I felt that but I wrote him back to check out whom that band was. He did and told me that their name was “kinda of blur” and that they were performing the week following our conversation over the phone. So he went and recorded another song and when I got the audiotape by the regular mail, I fell for blur. Thus, I went and joined him spending time out and I attended to my first gig of blur in june 1990. You know what ? What I felt then was love at first sight. Not physically but musically. Nothing compares to that feeling I had that night. Blur will be always and forever the only band to move me to tears on a simple song.
Anyhow, since that june 1990 evening, I’ve been a major “fan” of them. I don’t like the “fan” word because it sounds like for me a bit of “fanatic” and “hysterical”. I never wanted to get involved into any forum (signed up to some to read, but not interfering that much, especially not thinking that I’m a specialist !) or “fan club”, nor even chasing the band for an autograph or a photograph.  In the early years, I met them a few times backstage and wherever else, but never was imposing myself and acting hysterical. I saw many female fans whom were just acting like bitches to attract the attention of one of them (mainly Alex & Damon though) and it was just pathetic to my eyes.
I love them, four of them, for their music, the vision they have on the music, lyrics and compositions. Sometimes, I do like their vision of life and world but I don’t mind if one of them said something which is contrary of what I do believe truly. It does not interfere with my love for their music.  By the way, did I mention that I fancy Graham too much to talk about that ?
I am surely the most uninterested fan of them. I am not into their lives, their wives, kids’ names etc. Yes, I do know those facts about them, but what the point ? They have their lives and I am sure that I would appreciate discretion from a fan, if I were them.  I don’t collect stuff either. Yes, I do have many, many albums, cds, audiotapes, books and some magazines, but I am not trying to get everything in sight.
A couple of years ago, I knew where and when a member of blur spent his holidays. I was living nearby and I could have easily met him “accidently” many times. I never did a move. I even avoided going to a party or a restaurant diner knowing that he was invited too with his family. I went through to an event and spent a few hours around him and I never mentioned that I was a huge fan of his band. Even though I would have loved to ask him a few questions about the future of the band and even some points about a special song to me, I just smiled a few times when someone mentioned to him “I love your music, I am your biggest fan !”.
So, indeed, you won’t ever meet me waiting hours outside a concert place or a hotel ! Probably never yelling their names in the street or disturbing them in a private event.
I did see a few concerts from 1990 to nowadays. I won’t count them here because it shall be too much work for this paper. Some were more special to me because of an atmosphere or a particular person I attended it with. Liverpool & ULU 1990, Reading, Liverpool, Paris 1991, Rennes & Reading 1992, London 1993 were my incredible souvenirs from those early years.
After those, it was not really the same, it was highly amusing to get tickets and to attend to a gig due to thousands fans that joined to after “Girls & Boys” hit.  Paris & Bordeaux 1994 & May 1997 were a great period too. 1999 was hectic (again Reading). Paris & Liverpool took my heart in 2003 but the one which really brought me down is the July 3rd 2009 - Hyde Park gig. “The first gig that we put on sales” Damon said that night. I went through this year in a dream because I thought I would have never seen them all back together on stage. I think that those two hours were too short and too intense to fade away one day.
NME put on line their 10 best Blur songs last week, and I thought, why not !
Explaining the context of the song and why I do like were harder than I thought it would ! 
So, here are my ten favorites :
-          She’s So High : This is the very first song I’ve heard from them.  So, it is just special to me. Then, I just can’t stop smiling whenever this song pops up. And hearing Damon singing “I think of her… It doesn’t help me”, was quite a pleasure back in 1990 because it drove my former boyfriend crazy as he didn’t like the band and the “handsome jerk front man”. The July 3rd 2009 version is unique too. When they performed it in Hyde Park gig, it was the first song played and I could not believe that I was there, in London, in Hyde Park, among my friends and waiting for the reunited band on stage. Yes, Reunited, at least !

-          Best Days : If I feel low, whatever happened and wherever I am, I put that song in my MP3 and listen it loud. “Other people turn around and laugh at you if you said that these are the best days of our lives…” sound just so right to my ears and I am used to tell it to myself to go through sometimes. The melancholy and the softness of the song have most likely touched my heart.

-          The Universal : This Is A Low is one of the most incredibly moving song to me (along with Sweet Song), but The Universal is just as touching as Tender is. Despite the video which is basically an amazing one, the lyrics and the way of performing are major attractions to me. “When the days they seem to fall through you, well, just let them go” is kind of a motto for me. I don’t know why but I’ve been receptive to this sentence since the very first time I heard the song. The Great Escape was and still is a glorious album (but not the best for me !) and The Universal is major class. Quite a classic indeed. Unfortunately, some commercials put it on air lately in UK, making it a bit too “popular” in the most negative meaning.

-          Slowdown : Yes, I can see your reprobation saying that you don’t get it. Slowdown, for God’s Sake ! It’s not a song, some say. But it is funny enough and quite hilarious somehow. It reflects too a certain period of time when people were used to say “slowdown a bit, would you !”, but performing by blur, it ‘s an easier reason to calm down ! It’s also my name on forums.

-          Coffee & TV : Yes, it should be clear to anyone knowing me a bit, Graham sings ! Apart from that main interest, the lyrics are great, the sound is brilliant and the video is one of the cutest ! Again, vocally speaking, Graham is not Damon, gets this tiny little voice, but he is so adorable. It’s quite hysteria whenever he performs it live.

-          Sing : Probably one of the most significant song of them, and from Leisure. I do know that Leisure is quite a minor album for many (most ?) and it is not what we can call it “the origin of blur”, but it was just amazing back then.

-          No Distance Left to Run : Wanna make me cry ? Let’s listen to that song. Unexpectedly, when I first listened to it, it was a bit too still and gloomy for me. I was just under the Tender attack on 13 and didn’t really mention this song. A few months later, I attended to another band gig (yes, undeniably, I can like others bands !) and talking about their fans, one told me “blur ? gosh, I hate this moaning song – No Distance Left to Run- !”. I meant not to be offended but I really didn’t care of it. When back home, I put it and I felt like hit by a train…  How could I ignore that one ? Since the releasing of 13, I was in a very “shinny happy people” attitude, and nothing could depress me. No Distance Left To Run did. Sort of. I felt pain and suffer and I still do. It makes me feel alive. Amazingly alive.

-          Theme From an Imaginary Film : Right, second reprobation look toward my choice. I can hear you screaming that my tastes are shit ! It sounds like a silly song ; might be by the way. Anyhow, I quite adore this song. I still don’t know the reason why, but this song features my MP3 and my “save my day MP3” with the essential songs for me. Believe me or not, I stay irrational to the pressure of erasing it.

-           There’s No Other Way : The title says it all. There’s no other way than blur. It’s crystal. The introduction is about to make me feel a teenager any time I hear it. “Back to the past” ticket for free !

-          Young & Lovely : Oops ! First of all, the ones whom read that paper and aren’t true fans of blur might, at that moment, wonder “what the hell is that song ?”. I guess that this “Chemical world” b-side is fresh and lovely. Not the kind of single you are expected from blur. No doubt that some of you would hate it ! But I love this song.

I may add to that list :  the cover Daisy Daisy, Bang, Tender, M.O.R., This Is A Low, Battle, Ambulance, For Tomorrow, Popscene, Death of a Party, Inertia, Luminous, Sweet Song & Battery in your leg.
Daisy Daisy :

Bang :

Inertia :

Sweet Song :

Battery In Your Leg : 

Any comment ?