Wednesday, September 23, 2015

The Magic Whip - blur

This is the eight studio album, first since 2003's Think Tank, album by Britpop legends blur. Now I like this band, not love, but they has a dozen or so solid records (tracks). Parklife is my favorite album, but they have a bunch of great tracks off each album. Sadly I'ven't say thought Modern Life is Rubbish and The Great Escape front to back. So I can't really say if those entire albums are awesome, thought what I've heard is top notch. Now the thing I don't get is why the comeback. It was a few years ago I thought Abarn said they were never working together again. Like seriously, of all the comeback albums this is one of the most pointless. I kinda feel when something dies, you leave it dead. The only ever comebacks I can think of that worked are King Crimson's with Disipline (the name they were gonnna use before Fripp decided to revive the group) and kinda Deep Purple with 1984's Perfect Stranger. There may be others I can't pull off the top of my head, but for the record none of them have happened in the last 10 or so years. There is a reason I'm finally finishing this review. One of my goals is to finish up reviewing my 2015 albums.
  1. Lonesome Street: This reminds me, the title, of Fascination Street by The Cure. That's a much better track, but that really it doesn't pertain to this review. But for an intro to grab you attention, it's pretty up. I do like the weird "fever" part. It's psychedelic without being trippy. This is very classic blur sounding. Like it'd fit snuggly on Parklife or one of those.
  2. New World Towers: This gives me a very odd feeling at first, but once I piece together the Coldplay vibe it's not so odd. Although the rhythms here aren't one's I'd imagine Chris Martin and gang playing with. There is a very electronic medieval feeling I'm getting from the flute like synths. It's not that bad, but still I wish it was a little more exciting of a song. Maybe throw in a lute into the track.
  3. Go Out: The beginning vaguely reminded me of Wake Up, then Damon's vocals reminded me vaguely of Bowie. His "ah ah ah ah" thing he did. The guitar that comes in reminded me of something The Residents would do on their newer stuff. Also pretty neat bass line, like how it's so front. But this kinda ends up sounding like a track that was glued together. Sometimes that works, but here I just don't really like the feeling I'm getting. Not like an uncomfortable feeling, just one of "this might need multiple listens but I kinda know it's not gonna get better. Even if I undecode it."
  4. Ice Cream Man: This is was probably my favorite song on the album. I also think it's one of the better Ice Cream related songs I've heard. Not as good as Ice Cream Man by Van Halen but significantly better than Stay Frosty. Though there is a communist theme to the song, I really don't care to dig into the lyrics. You can tell this is a very melancholic track, even though it progressively gets happier sounding. I like the odd electronic flourishes, and like the acoustic guitar in the track. It's just very odd.
  5. Thought I Was A Space Man: I have an interesting idea for this title. While Damon and crew probably have a better theme, I still think I have something that's neat. It's very fitting, and very echoy. But outside of the outer thing, I really don't even.... I can't say I really even consider this a good song. It's just kinda filler to me. Nothing really interesting happens.
  6. I Broadcast: This track has promise, but really..... it's just. I got nothing. It's a blur song. But it doesn't have the charm of a blur song.
  7. My Terracotta Heart: A track very in the vein of The Universal, but less orchestral. I mean seriously, give it real orchestration, not this electonic sounding stuff. It's also not as interesting. I mean when I hear the Uni I feel feelings, when I hear this I think of a boring song in an okay movie and in a very pointless boring scene. I also looked it up and terracotta is a type of clay that is "baked" to make. It's also means "baked earth". I really like the imagery of a clay heart though I don't know if that was intended. Like what I'm picturing I don't think was intended, considering this is a song about Graham and Damon's relationship. Seriously guys give me something, Spanish guitar solo played on nylon strings. Something anything. I mean I do like jazzy solos, but the solo here just fits too perfectly it blurs the lines of boring. I mean Coffee & TV is a pretty creative solo that fits, but who the fuck would put that there other than Robert Fripp and Graham Coxton.
  8. There Are Too Many Of Us: This track reminds me a ton of The Police's 1983 track Spirits In A Material World. Its those like string and the whole robot feel I get from the track. Not at all like musically, because this track has less going on in terms of notes and speed. That is the most upsetting part about this track. This is also in the vein of Puritan. You know if you want a neat more interesting take on this you can do the relationship wise (Too Many People) or the population wise (We Are Hungry Men). Both better than this, both amazing and hilarious respective. But this is also so repetitive it needs something more. I mean yes the band does come in later, but that doesn't give it a pass.
  9. Ghost Ship: I literally was just riffing around then this song started, and I played a better melody that is also far more interesting than this songs. That's probably not that good.
  10. Pyongyang: I like this title, I think is laid back. But there is a lot of songs that aren't to different from this track here.
  11. Ong Ong: This is a pretty decent track, and while not a classic track by the group I still enjoy it. Although it is kind of redundant, I still think it's a pretty decent track. This is a nice track.
  12. Mirrorball: This closes the album, and it's a pretty track. This is also a great ending for the album, and feels very western inspired.
Overall I have to give this album a 5/10. I hate to say this but there are tracks I hear in other tracks. But there are also tracks that feel like sketches. I can also play a chorus that sounds like their old energetic and danceable Britpop sound with those lyrics, in my head. This almost sounds like they took either old songs or the spirit of that past and tried to make it sound grown up and mature. Or like if they are revisiting it now, that they are mature and older. And the tracks kind of lose the charm they had. But there are very few moments that I will revisit at all, period. These a there tie in with the title, but I just can't connect. It's just I don't have a drive to better understand this, and its because its as exciting as Tunnel of Love (1987 album by Bruce). Also with the whole reunion I guess The Beatles with recording Real Love and Free as A Bird were pretty good, Real Love is a solid track. But those were also for not an entire album. Whatever.

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