Blur – Midlife: A Beginner’s Guide to Blur (CD)

It’s easy to forget just how long Blur has been around. Thanks to the handy timeline tucked inside the liner notes of the anthology Midlife: A Beginner’s Guide to Blur, you realize that they started before the EU was officially established, before the Soviet Union broke up and just one month after the Internet was opened to the public. The 25 tracks that make up the release – a collection of greatest hits and fan favorites – serve as a great reminder of just how influential this Brit Pop band has been.

Sure Oasis may have grabbed more headlines in the U.S., prickish behavior will do that , not there is no denying just how good this band is at writing a catchy three minute pop song. “Song 2” with its rip chord guitars may have been their biggest hit in America, but there are a slew of other brilliant songs from Blur that never got the proper amount of deserved attention outside of their native England (“Bettlebum,” “Girls and Boys” and “Coffee and TV,” to name a few). This two CD collection, coming out on the eve of the band’s 20th Anniversary, is a satisfyingly comprehensive collection that also includes the hard to find early track “Popscene.” It seems rather appropriate that Oasis have broken up, just as Blur is getting back together.

Top tracks: “Girls and Boys,” “She’s Do High,” “Coffee and TV” and “Song 2”

Rating: 8.5 out of 10

Blur – Midlife: A Beginner’s Guide to Blur/ 2 CDs / 2009 / 25 tracks / EMI / www.blur.co.uk

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