Continuing the trend, Blur went straight in at No 1 on its release in February 1997, as had Parklife and The Great Escape before it. Representing a musical evolution for the band, the album is home to two of Blur s biggest hits in Beetlebum and Song 2. B-sides taken from all formats of these two singles are included in the accompanying Blur Special Edition bonus disc, along with b-sides from the album s fourth single M.O.R. Also included on the bonus disc is a 7 mix of Death Of A Party by Adrian Sherwood, the Dust Brothers produced Cowboy Song (which featured on the Dead Man On Campus soundtrack), four acoustic live tracks recorded at Viva Niteclub (previously only released on the German-only version of the M.O.R. single) and three live tracks recorded at MC Vredenburg, Utrecht, Netherlands, which were only previously released on the Netherlands-only version of the album.
...Marshall’s (b. 1942) Evensongs represent a return to home ground. Based on two protestant hymns of his childhood, Now the Day Is Over and Abide with Me, the piece mixes taped elements—including a chorus of music boxes--with a live string quartet. Once part of a ubiquitous American soundtrack, the melodies in Marshall’s six variations shift in and out of focus like half-recalled memories. Both songs are Victorian era meditations on evening. Now the Day was written as a children’s hymn; Abide, whose author knew himself to be ill, is a frequent funeral piece. Between these two aspects—the rosy end of day and the gloomy end of life—Marshall’s music stakes out a tremulous middle ground. There, in the shimmering twilight, with echoes of his own child’s voice on the tape, innocence and experience blur.
Blur is the fifth album by English alternative rock band Blur. Released on 10 February 1997 in the UK, it reached the top of the UK album chart. Blur was also a hit in the US, with "Song 2" becoming a hit there and the album being certified Gold. It also spawned several hit singles in the UK, most notably "Beetlebum" and "Song 2". The album's style was resultant of Blur's dropping their previous Britpop mantle in favor of lo-fi and alternative rock recordings, reportedly at Graham Coxon's urging. As a result, Blur was a hit primarily because it proved that Blur could evolve beyond their Britpop roots. The album's move from Britpop was emphasised by this being the first Blur album not to use Stylorouge cover-art and also not to have lyrics and chords printed in the liner notes, instead having a composite photo of the band in the studio spread out over three panels. The album featured the first song in which Graham Coxon not only wrote the lyrics, but also provided lead vocals, for the song "You're So Great". He would later do the same for "Coffee & TV" for Blur's next album..
Stan Getz was such a consistent performer and had such a beautiful tone that nearly all of his recordings are well worth getting. The two radio appearances heard on this 1997 CD are even on a higher level than normal. Joined by pianist Kenny Barron, either Ray Drummond or Yashuito Mori on bass, and drummer Ben Riley, Getz is heard at the peak of his powers on a pair of obscurities (Kenny Barron's "Feijada" and Gigi Gryce's "Stan's Blues") and six numbers (including "Voyage," "Blood Count" and "Warm Valley") that he recorded numerous times. To hear Getz adding even more beauty to Mal Waldron's already gorgeous "Soul Eyes" is a memorable experience.
The Best of Nat King Cole is part of EMI-Capitol Special Markets' Ten Best Series, where they selected ten hits from a popular artist on their roster. For the budget-minded, it's a nice collection of Nat King Cole's best-known hits, like "Unforgettable," "Ramblin' Rose," "Mona Lisa," "Walkin' My Baby Back Home" and "(I Love You) For Sentimental Reasons." It certainly won't please either jazz purists or Cole collectors, but the budget-conscious looking for an affordable (albeit skimpy) sampler of well-known Cole should turn here.
The Third Rail are best remembered today because their closest brush with hit-single status, 1967's "Run Run Run," appeared on Lenny Kaye's pioneering original Nuggets compilation in 1972. But while that album was the shot that kicked off the great garage rock revival, the Third Rail's music was a far better example of the glorious products of the pop music factory that was the Brill Building rather than teenage rock & roll run wild and free. Group founder Artie Resnick was a seasoned pro in the music biz, having written "Under the Boardwalk" and "Good Lovin'," and vocalist and co-writer Joey Levine was a teenaged pop prodigy who (like Resnick) would later become a major player in Buddah Records' mighty bubblegum empire a few years down the line. But in 1967, Levine was just a bit too clever for his own good, which is a big part of the pleasure of the Third Rail's sole album, ID Music.