Favorite tracks: 13

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What are your five favorite tracks from 13?

Coffee & TV
Swamp Song
Mellow Song
Trimm Trabb
No Distance Left to Run
Optigan 1
Total votes: 357

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My Name Is Mud
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Joined: 26 Jan 2015, 07:40
Location: Dublin

Re: Favorite tracks: 13

Post by My Name Is Mud » 15 Apr 2015, 08:38

Yeah that Brixton Academy gig is amazing. There was also a brief interview with Damon before the gig. Always meant to rip it because I have it on tape still.

Mary Ann Hobbs: "People have been queuing all day in the wind and rain to see ya."
Damon: "Bless em."


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Re: Favorite tracks: 13

Post by EverydayRobot » 15 Apr 2015, 18:55

So I voted for...

1.Trimm Trabb
2.Coffee And TV

13 is my joint favourite Blur album with MLIR. :D

Charmless Fan
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Location: Seattle WA, USA

Re: Favorite tracks: 13

Post by Charmless Fan » 03 Nov 2015, 06:40

Swamp Song
Trimm Trabb

An overall great album - hate to not see the others listed (OK, it was easy to cut B.L.U.R.E.M.I. immediately), but five choices are all I get!

(I also like how the little interludes keep you from easily being able to tell when some tracks blend into the next - "13" is more like a flowing experience than a set of individual tracks. Good contrast as well between sensitive (for lack of a better word) material (e.g. Tender, Mellow Song) and crazy stuff like Bugman and Swamp Song.

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Re: Favorite tracks: 13

Post by murfman04 » 03 Nov 2015, 12:58

Wow i forgot how good Killer for your love is live :)

Coffee and Tv
Trimm Trabb
Swamp Song

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Joined: 03 Oct 2015, 20:01

Re: Favorite tracks: 13

Post by ctrb30 » 03 Nov 2015, 13:21

1 Tender
2 swamp song
3 B.L.U.R.E.M.I.
4 No distance left to run
5 Trimm trabb :D

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Re: Favorite tracks: 13

Post by DK42 » 03 Nov 2015, 17:35

I love love love this album, it's my favorite Blur record and one of my all time favorites as well. I honestly love every track on it, it's that good and far too criminally underrated, especially when we're talking best of 90s albums.

1) Trimm Trabb
2) Coffee & TV
3) Battle
4) Swamp Song
5) B.L.U.R.E.M.I.

This will likely change in an hour.

Neal Zeal
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Joined: 17 Oct 2014, 16:43

Re: Favorite tracks: 13

Post by Neal Zeal » 20 Nov 2015, 23:02

Here's (arguably) the ultimate review of 13.

"Two-and-a-half minutes into the tenth track on his band's sixth album Damon Albarn is heard to ponder: "Where is the magic?/I've got to get better". The song is 'Caramel', where opaque Floydian psychedelia morphs into distended space-rock with additional call-and-response operatic chanting.

After six or so impressively edgy minutes, it drifts to a halt. Someone puts on a record of wobbly fairground music. A car starts. Finally, this miasmic trip through a no-longer-so-very-young-man's neuroses ends with a passable stab at some Death In Vegas-style chemical funk. What a mess. Yet, in its sprawling, muddled brilliance, 'Caramel' encapsulates both the very best and worst aspects of the new album by Blur.

'13' is an extension of the atonement process instigated by 1997's 'Blur', every aspect of which, from the title inwards, sought to draw a line beneath its authors' recent past, in particular the grand folly that was 'The Great Escape'. If 'Blur' was a wilful act of rebirth, then '13' is an exercise in enforced musical adolescence, the sound of men attempting to unlearn the techniques that defined their premature maturity. In the process, they've sought to evince the soul their detractors have always doubted Blur possessed.

Thus, '13' is rampantly indulgent, transparently emotional - the well-trumpeted, barely concealed subtext is the demise of Albarn's relationship with Justine Frischmann - and rather self-consciously experimental. At 66 minutes' duration, it is (at least) a quarter-of-an-hour too long. And its vertiginous drops in quality control means '13' is Blur's most inconsistent and infuriating statement thus far.

Infuriating, because divested of four solid-gone clunkers '13' could pass muster as the best of Blur. Opening with the recent single sets an audacious tone. If it initially felt crass, a too-obvious assimilation of Beck's backwoods purity and Spiritualized's 'Come Together', 'Tender' grows in stature with every play. Damon has never sung so well, while Graham Coxon and his dextrous string-manipulation, rather than the gospel choir, bedrocks the song's resolution. It really is a marvel. Moreover, in light of what follows, its devotional flame starts to looks a little forlorn.

After 'MOR''s 'Boys Keep Swinging' cop on the last album, 'Bugman' heralds the return of BlurAsBowie - only this time, there's little semblance of a tune. 'Swamp Song' is pure frumpery, a lurching non-song the like of which Pavement might concoct were they: a) commissioned to compose a Cure pastiche; and b) completely pissed. Mercifully separating the two is 'Coffee & TV', a sweet, Krautrockin' distillation of Coxonlife "Sociability/Is hard enough for me/Take me away from this big bad world and agree to marry me") that, ironically, given Graham's reputation as Blur's hitherto frustrated avant-garde conscience, is the LP's sole straightforward pop song.

The raw, grinding '1992' is the first track to blatantly address Damon's very public private life, though only the protagonists themselves will understand the full implications of such lines as, "You'd love my bed/You took the other instead", or, "What do you owe me?/The price of your peace of mind...". The song's stinging cacophony gradually renders the specifics inaudible, but the 'message' is plain. Were '13' really Albarn's pre-mid-life-crisis album, we might expect such exercises in bruised wisdom to predominate - and a better record may have emerged. Instead there's the jokey hokum of 'BLUREMI' and the trip-hop débâcle 'Trailerpark', where in his worst American accent Damon reveals how he lost his girl "to The Rolling Stones". Ho-hum.

'Mellow Song' delivers on the half-finished premise of its half-arsed title. 'Battle' is an artful studio sprawl searching vainly for somewhere in particular to go. 'Trimm Trabb', meanwhile, deftly blends woozy Albarn melancholy ("I sleep alone") with punchy discordant riffola, yet tarries too long and the impact is blunted.

Indeed, just as one has been driven near spare with exasperation at '13''s profligacy, along comes its saving grace in the bloodily cathartic form of 'No Distance Left To Run'. Over Graham's sorrowful, twilight grind, Damon offers his former lover an extended valedictory: "It's over", he croaks. "You don't need to tell me/ I hope you're with someone who makes you feel safe in your sleeping tonight/ I won't kill myself trying to stay in your life". Beautifully sung again, this twinside to 'Tender''s affirmatory hymnal is a blessed piece of music. Even at the death, though, they have to slip in 'Optigan 1', an instrumental coda that dilutes the preceding song's force.

That magic is here, then, but so clogged by extraneous growth you could be forgiven for not noticing. '13' is the first album Blur have made without producer Stephen Street, and while it clearly reveals a band operating at new levels of creative intensity there's no question that some hard-but-fair pruning would have improved its demeanour. Next time, perhaps this newly organic Blur shall finally triumph and make a genius pop record that doesn't sound like it's been either genetically modified or hamstrung by a bogus quest for authenticity. Come on, come on, come on... "

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