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Modern Life Is Rubbish Import

4.4 out of 5 stars 45 customer reviews

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58th Annual GRAMMY Awards
Discover this year's nominees on CD and Vinyl, including Album of the Year, Artist of the Year, Best New Artist of the Year, and more. Learn more

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (Nov. 16 1993)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: EMI Music Canada
  • ASIN: B000002USH
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Audio Cassette  |  LP Record
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars 45 customer reviews
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1. For Tomorrow
2. Advert
3. Colin Zeal
4. Pressure On Julian
5. Star Shaped
6. Blue Jeans
7. Chemical World (Includes Hidden Track 'Intermission')
8. Sunday Sunday
9. Oily Water
10. Miss America
11. Villa Rosie
12. Coping
13. Turn It Up
14. Resigned (Includes Hidden Track 'Commercial Break')
15. Pop Scene - Blur
16. Resigned - Blur
17. Commercial Break - Blur
18. When The Cows Come Home (Bonus Track)
19. Peach (Bonus Track)

Product Description


Blur's second album saw them finding their feet just before they suddenly went supernova. In songs like "Chemical World", they started developing the themes of everyday British life that would follow them to their Parklife era. "Sunday Sunday" provided its own blueprint for the Britpop scene, showing the traditional Sunday dinner with the family for what it really is ("You gather the family round the table and eat enough to sleep"), while "Advert" follows in the spirit of Blur's musical ancestors (art school punks and mods). "Blue Jeans", meanwhile, demonstrates that Damon Albarn has always had a talent for writing delicate, sad ballads. Modern Life Is Rubbish deserves to be heard, not only to show how much Blur changed over the years, but because it still stands up and holds its own against anything they came up with later in their career. --Emma Johnston

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
The Madchester scene was helpful in getting Blur a record contract, but the image that it left them dragged them down as the scene faded. Blur needed a vision. On a tour of America, memories of their british homeland inspired them to write the songs that would become Modern Life is Rubbish, arguably the beginning of britpop.
There is still a hint of their Leisure days on tracks like Oily Water and Turn it Up, but other than that, Modern Life is Rubbish is a leap forward for Blur, a reinvention. This is a band that mines the history of British music, from the Kinks-style satire of Sunday Sunday to the Syd Barrett-vibe of Miss America. It even pays tribute to Teardrop Explodes lead singer Julian Cope on Pressure on Julian. This is a band that gives us goofy instrumentals between tracks. This is a band that pokes fun at commercialized world, on songs like the punky Advert and the resigned Resigned. This is a band that thinks the rush of the city isn't worth it, as heard in the lyrics of Coping and Colin Zeal. This is a band that thinks Modern Life IS Rubbish.
Modern life may be rubbish, but the performance of this album isn't. Damon Albarn's voice is a lot more confident than it is on Leisure, and the lyrics are more complex, and sometimes downright funny. ("practice doesn't make perfect when you're interbreeding", from Villa Rosie). Damon also gets to show off his talents on piano and a wide variety of keyboard, something he didn't get to do as much of on Leisure. Graham Coxon's guitar playing is delicious, as catchy and as vibrant as you can get for this kind of music. Both Alex James' bass and Dave Rowntree's drumming are varied and help to keeps things interesting.
Some reviews have called this album weird.
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Format: Audio CD
Not a new release by any means, but spinning in my head for good reason.
Blur's second album, released in 1993, was a direct invite into the stormy world of Britpop, which was about to explode into mainstream. In the United States, the extension of Britpop leads only to Oasis and very early Radiohead (which is a shaky comparison at best), and often gets bogged into the sugar-pop of the Spice Girls or the alt-grunge of Bush before being recognised as its own separate and definitive category.
Blur remain the lone symbols of what was once Britpop, having just released a 7th album to number one sales and singles and receiving a recent vote of album of the year by Q magazine (surprisingly ahead of Radioheads latest). Where Suede have disbanded, reformed, disbanded, and now are allegedly reforming again, Oasis have declined to repetitive schlock, and Radiohead have turned their heads to the left-field, Blur have survived through the gentle art of constant reinvention, while still retaining a core sound.
MLIR Marks Blur first foray into what became "traditional" Brit-Pop. They tore off their 'baggy' style (enforced upon them by the execs at Food Records) and replaced it with a tongue-in-cheek cynicism that was distinctly...well...British.
While fool's gold tracks like "Sunday Sunday" and "Turn it Up" are easily mass-pleasure romps, the rest of the album is a vignette of 1993 from the UK perspective. I say this because a vignette of 1993 from the US perspective would consist of a one word answer that starts with an 'S' and ends with an 'eattle'.
The album opens with "For Tomorrow," one of the "hit singles" frontman Damon Albarn was told to write in order to get his band's follow-up to 1991's Leisure released.
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Format: Audio CD
"Leisure"(1991)was still the product of a band in the search for their own sound(though having one of Blur's best songs-"There's no other way")and litlle prepared for success,as the black hole they entered after "Popscene"(1992)plummeted down the charts showed.Virtually written off by every journalist in Britain they set out to prove their worth,honed their pop formula,found their own voice and released their first great album-"Modern Life is Rubbish"-ressurrecting for the 90's the british spirit of bands like the Kinks,Squeeze or Jam(Which is visible in the superb retro cover).
FOR TOMORROW-One of Blur's trademark songs;the guitar in the beginning followed by Damon singing "He's a twentieth century boy"(T-Rex anybody) still make for one of the best song intros(and albums for that matter) in modern music history.
ADVERT-An excellent tune with outstanding vocal harmonies in the chorus.
COLIN ZEAL-The closest to the KInks sound,and all the better for that.
PRESSURE ON JULIAN-Reportedly about Julian Cope(it sees Blur acknowledge one of their influences)it's a great track in the spirit of the album.
STARSHAPED-The most uplifting track,it hasn't got though a chorus to match the verses feel of teenage gusto.
BLUE JEANS-The most gorgeous melody in here,one of the standouts.
CHEMICAL WORLD-Faster than the last one,was one of the singles.
SUNDAY,SUNDAY-The most direct song of this recording,great guitar,vocals,chorus and it's fast too.Perfect.
OILY WATER-The worst track,probably because the demo version of this song was considered good enough to be in the album,well it wasn't.Should have been more worked upon.
MISS AMERICA-Possibly Damon's best vocal perfomance lies here.
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