Blur: 12 of the best missed and overlooked tracks
To celebrate the release of the new Blur album the Magic Whip 12 years after 2003’s Think Tank, here are 12 Blur songs that have been criminally missed over the years.
B-Side track from the sadly overlooked Popscene EP. Its 6 minutes of woozy shoegazing guitars and droney bass. It was Blur’s swansong to their early years. What I wouldn’t give for another track like this!
Taken from their debut album Leisure, Sing was the single that never was. Insanely catchy piano riff, backward guitars and drenched in melancholy and regret. This was one of the first signs that Blur weren’t just another baggy indie pop group. They had other things on their mind!
A B-Side from the Crazy Beat single. It is one of the few tracks that Graham Coxon worked on before he left the band in 2003. Is the title a reference to Coxon’s departure or the Albert Camus novel?
This is one of the heaviest and dirtiest tracks Blur ever released. Never has going out to a club sounded so terrifying and exciting!
He Thought of Cars
Another single that never was. Given the singles from the Great Escape album, how Stereotypes got selected instead of this is beyond me. He Thought of Cars sums up perfectly the post- Parklife malaise that would be the nail in the coffin for Britpop.
To the End (Featuring Francoise Hardy)
An entirely French version of this Parklife single. This version features the classic chanteuse Francoise Hardy. While there wasn’t much wrong with the original, this version oozes sensuality.
Theme from an Imaginary Film
During the Britpop period, it was popular to write a theme/song for a fictions film. Portishead did it better than most. This three minute ditty has a faux French feel to it, and is reminiscent to Scott Walkers Jacques Brel covers.
Give how poor the Great Escape was overall, it’s seem odds that this track would be missed off, only to make it as a B-Side for the Stereotypes.
This song is named after the Beagle 2 space probe. The song was part of the European Space Agency’s equipment and was meant to play as soon as the real life Beagle 2 touched down on Mars. Beagle 2 was lost in space until 2015, so we’ll never know if played the song, as expected.
Music is My Radar
A stand-alone single to help promote the Best of Blur album released in 2000. It is Graham Coxon’s last single with the band until he re-joined in 2009.
Me, White Noise
Phil Daniels features on this hidden track from Think Tank. Its part Parklife part ‘Ullo John Got a New Motor, but for the post-clubbing generation.
Under the Westway
This is the song that kick started the sessions that became new album the Magic Whip. In 2012, against the odds Blur re-formed and recorded this single, inspired by the stretch of motorway that runs over Damon Albarn’s 13 studio. It’s a tender lamenting ballad that slowly grows until it’s tear jerking outro.