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May 12, 2003 - Image 12

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
Michigan Daily Summer Weekly, 2003-05-12

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

12 - The Michigan Daily - Monday, May 12, 2003

ARTS

BLUR
THINK TANK
PARLOPHONE/VIRGIN RECORDS
Blur's self-titled 1997 release was
best known for its jock-rock sing-along
"Song 2," but discerning fans who
stuck around for the rest of the album
were treated to a wonderful makeover.
Abandoning the shameless Britpop
they had rolled into town on, Blur
recreated themselves as an art-rock
ensemble, and 1999's 13 furthered the
transformation. The recent departure
of Graham Coxon, one of the planet's

criminally unrecognized guitarists,
threatened to stall the creative
momentum, but amazingly enough,
Think Tank is a completely realized
and unique set of tunes highlighting
frontman Damon Albarn's ongoing
flirtations with dance beats (see
"Girls and Boys" and Gorillaz).
The horn skronk of the opener,
"Ambulance," and the low-key soul of
"Caravan" prove the band is still
capable of sonic experimentation,
while the vague remnants of Eastern
melodies and other world music on
"Out of Time" and "Jets" provide just

enough sonic variation to keep things
from getting stale.
While these are certainly triumphs,
it's the killer melodies on "On the
Way to the Club" and "Sweet Song"
that truly define the album. Blur's
third straight album of gutsy, intelli-
gent songcraft is easily their best, and
it's high-time for people to take
notice. There are few bands with the
talent, ambition and confidence to
produce such consistently successful
reinvention. ****
- Andrew M. Gaerig

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