Better Know a Stoner Song – “Death of a Party” by Blur

Given the average age of our customers, I’m willing to bet that most of you would recognize Damon Albarn’s voice as that of the animated/”fictional” band Gorillaz that has dominated the hybridization of popular rock and rap for two decades. Their debut, self titled CD came out in mid 2001, storming the remenants of MTV and MTV2 with the slick anime/american stylized animation and clues but no definite answers to the identity of the band. Except to those who knew Blur.  Press play on the Youtube player, below, and scroll on to continue reading, below.

A photo of the English rock band Blur playing on stage
Blur, Rome, 2013. Photo by Σπάρτακος, used with permission under CC-SA-3.

Blur burst onto the Euro rock scene in 1991 as Jesus Jones and EMF were bridging wave to rock, and dominating American charts amongst teeny boppers. Change was in the air. “Leisure”, Blur’s first album was released August 26th, 1991, exactly 4 weeks prior to Nirvana’s release of “Nevermind”. We all know who won out in the US. Nonetheless, Leisure was a great album, and simply a testament of what was to come. Mass market acceptance of Blur’s work in the United States would wait a few years.

Fast forward to 1997, and Blur releases their self titled album, perhaps the band’s masterpiece. It’s full of great, varied music, from the Grunge/Punk/Beasties influence on Song 2, the albums biggest hit, to On Your Own, M.O.R., Beetlbum, and Country Sad Ballad Man, is an absolutle gem of trippiness towards the end.

‘Death of a Party’. Full of fun guitar effects, satisfying hooks, and lyrics that any person who lived with social gusto through their 20s on the left coast can appreciate – the point of the song being how much can one take? It’s a metaphoric hanging singer Damon Albarn commits, as his hanging is ‘softly on the shelf’, but the point is clear. Powders, alcohol, and club drugs take a toll night after night, and the question becomes ‘why am I doing this’, complete with the remorse of the activity.

Cannabis is safer, folks, which coupled with the electric effect overtones, lyric matter, and october appropriate spooky-ish sound of the song makes it the perfect choice for this week’s Better Know A Stoner Song.

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