Sunday, December 17, 2006
Blur - Parklife (1998)
Although the album failed to chart in the US, "Girls & Boys" became a hit there, while Parklife became Blur's first UK #1 album, entering in the pole position upon its release, and staying there for one week. In fact, one of the most significant things that Blur (and the '90s Britpop movement, really) did was reintroduce the importance of the pop single. Blur realize that the A-side is as much an art as the album, and not just from a marketing sense. Pop singles are pop culture, and Parklife spawned four "proper" singles but probably three-quarters of the album could've easily fit in on the radio. Some might say that Parklife isn't for everyone -- too British, too lofty (or boring, to some) a concept, too poppy even. But no other album made me sit up and realize that pop music didn't have to be disposable -- didn't have to be about the MTV flavor of the month -- like this one did. And it still sounds just as good to this 29-year-old's ears as it did to that 18-year-olds ears.