Blue Lines: Wikis

  
  

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Blue Lines
Studio album by Massive Attack
Released 8 April 1991 (UK)
6 August 1991 (US)
Recorded 1990, Bristol and London
Genre Trip hop, soul
Length 45:02
Label Virgin Records, Circa
Producer Massive Attack, Cameron McVey, Jonny Dollar
Professional reviews
Massive Attack chronology
Blue Lines
(1991)
Protection
(1994)
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Blue Lines is the debut album by British electronica group Massive Attack, released on 8 April 1991 (see 1991 in music) by Virgin Records.

Blue Lines is generally considered the first trip hop album,[1] although the term was not coined until years later. The album was a success in the United Kingdom, reaching #13 in the albums chart; sales were limited elsewhere. A fusion of electronic music, hip hop, dub music, '70s soul music and reggae, the album established Massive Attack as one of the most innovative British bands of the 1990s and the founder of trip hop's Bristol Sound.[2] Music critic Simon Reynolds stated that the album also marked a change in electronic/dance music, "a shift toward a more interior, meditational sound. The songs on Blue Lines run at 'spliff' tempos — from a mellow, moonwalking 90 beats per minute ...down to a positively torpid 67 bpm."[3] The group also drew inspiration from concept albums in various genres by artists such as Pink Floyd, Public Image Ltd., Herbie Hancock and Isaac Hayes.[3]

Blue Lines featured breakbeats, sampling, and rapping on a number of tracks, but the design of the album differed from traditional hip hop. Massive Attack approached the American-born hip hop movement from an underground British perspective, as well as incorporating live instruments into the mixes. It features the vocals of Shara Nelson and Horace Andy, along with the rapping of Tricky Kid. Blue Lines proved to be popular in the club scene, as well as on college radio stations.[4]

Daddy G said about the making of the album:

We were lazy Bristol twats. It was Neneh Cherry who kicked our arses and got us in the studio. We recorded a lot at her house, in her baby's room. It stank for months and eventually we found a dirty nappy behind a radiator. I was still DJing, but what we were trying to do was create dance music for the head, rather than the feet. I think it's our freshest album, we were at our strongest then.[5]

Contents

Critical acclaim

In 1997, Blue Lines was named the 21st "greatest album of all time" in a "Music of the Millennium" poll conducted by HMV, Channel 4, The Guardian and Classic FM. In 1998, Q readers placed it at number 58 in its list of the "100 Greatest Albums Ever", and in 2000, the album was voted at number 9 in the magazine's poll of the "100 Greatest British Albums Ever". In 2003, the album was ranked number 395 on Rolling Stone's list of the 500 greatest albums of all time.

Stuart Bailie of BBC Northern Ireland stated that, "It was soul music. But it had bold, symphonic arrangements. It featured samples of the Mahavishnu Orchestra going 'hey, hey hey, hey.' It had funky breaks and an emotional power that was hard to figure. It sounded anxious and lost. But there was a grandeur in the music also. People who came across the record became obsessed, spinning it endlessly."[6]

The track "Unfinished Sympathy" has received high accolades, frequently described as one of the best songs of all time. It was nominated for a BRIT Award as best single of 1991. It also appeared on the soundtrack for the 1993 Sharon Stone film Sliver.[2] According to BBC.co.uk: "More than a decade after its release it remains one of the most moving pieces of dance music ever, able to soften hearts and excite minds just as keenly as a ballad by Bacharach or a melody by McCartney."[7]

Track listing

# Title Writer(s) Length
1. "Safe from Harm"   Marshall, Vowles, Del Naja, Nelson, Cobham, McLaughlin 5:18
2. "One Love"   Marshall, Vowles, Del Naja, Andy, C.J. Williams, Cobham, Wolinski 4:48
3. "Blue Lines"   Marshall, Vowles, Del Naja, Thaws, Bennett, Brown, Carlton, Geurin, Sample, Scott 4:21
4. "Be Thankful for What You've Got"   DeVaughn 4:09
5. "Five Man Army"   Marshall, Vowles, Del Naja, Thaws, Williams 6:04
6. "Unfinished Sympathy"   Marshall, Vowles, Del Naja, Nelson, J. Sharp 5:08
7. "Daydreaming"   Marshall, Vowles, Del Naja, Nelson, Thaws, Badarou 4:14
8. "Lately"   Marshall, Vowles, Del Naja, Nelson, G. Redmond, L. Brownlee, J. Simon, F.E. Simon 4:26
9. "Hymn of the Big Wheel"   Marshall, Vowles, Del Naja, Andy, Cherry 6:36

Credits

  1. "Safe from Harm"
    • Shara Nelson: vocals
    • Recorded at Coach House, Bristol
    • Mixed at Matrix, London
    • Mix engineer: Jeremy Allom
  2. "One Love"
    • Horace Andy: vocals
    • Recorded at Coach House, Bristol
    • Mixed at Konk Studios, London
    • Mix engineer: Bryan Chuck New
  3. "Blue Lines"
    • Massive Attack and Tricky: vocals
    • Recorded at Eastcote Studios, London
    • Engineer: Kevin Petri
    • Mix engineer: Jeremy Allom
    • Bass guitar: Paul Johnson
  4. "Be Thankful for What You've Got"
    • Tony Bryan: vocals
    • Recorded at Cherry Bear Studios
    • Mixed at Matrix, London
    • Mix engineer: Jeremy Allom
  5. "Five Man Army"
    • Massive Attack, Horace Andy, Tricky, and Claude "Willie Wee" Williams: vocals
    • Recorded at Eastcote Studios, London
    • Engineer: Kevin Petri
    • Mixed at Matrix, London
    • Mix engineer: Jeremy Allom
  6. "Unfinished Sympathy"
    • Shara Nelson: vocals
    • Recorded at Coach House, Bristol, and Abbey Road Studios, London
    • Strings engineer: Hayden
    • Mixed at Matrix, London
    • Mix engineer: Jeremy Allom
    • Strings arranged and conducted by Wil Malone
    • Leader: Gavin Wright
  7. "Daydreaming"
    • Massive Attack, Tricky, and Shara Nelson: vocals
    • Recorded at Cherry Bear Studios
    • Mixed at Konk Studios and Roundhouse, London
    • Mix engineer: Jeremy Allom
  8. "Lately"
    • Shara Nelson: vocals
    • Recorded and mixed at Coach House, Bristol
    • Mix engineer: Bryan Chuck New
  9. "Hymn of the Big Wheel"
    • Horace Andy: vocals
    • Neneh Cherry: backing vocals, additional arrangement
    • Mikey General: backing vocals
    • Recorded at Coach House, Bristol, and Hot Nights, London
    • Mixed at Matrix, London
    • Mix engineer: Jeremy Allom

Singles

  • "Daydreaming" (15 October 1990)
  • "Unfinished Sympathy" (11 February 1991)
  • "Safe from Harm" (27 May 1991)
  • "Hymn of the Big Wheel" / "Be Thankful for What You've Got" (a.k.a. Massive Attack E.P.) (10 February 1992)

Chart positions

Year Chart Peak
position
1991 UK Albums Chart 10[8]
Year Title Chart Peak
position
1990 "Daydreaming" UK Singles Chart 81[9]
1991 "Unfinished Sympathy" UK Singles Chart 13[10]
1991 "Safe from Harm" UK Singles Chart 25[11]
1991 "Safe from Harm" U.S. Billboard Modern Rock Tracks 28
1991 "Safe from Harm" U.S. Billboard Hot Dance Music/Club Play 35
1991 "Safe from Harm" U.S. Billboard Hot Dance Music/Maxi-Singles Sales 32
1992 Massive Attack E.P. UK Singles Chart 27[12]

See also

References

  1. ^ Guy Garcia (25 October 1998). "Trip-Hop Reinvents Itself to Take on the World". The New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/1998/10/25/arts/music-trip-hop-reinvents-itself-to-take-on-the-world.html?pagewanted=all. Retrieved 13 October 2009.  
  2. ^ a b Schwartz, Mark. "Planet Rock: Hip Hop Supa National." In The Vibe History of Hip-hop, ed. Alan Light, 361-72. New York: Three Rivers Press, 1999.
  3. ^ a b Reynolds, Simon (1998). Generation Ecstasy: Into the World of Techno and Rave Culture. Little, Brown and Co.. ISBN 0415923735.  
  4. ^ Schwartz, Mark. "Planet Rock: Hip Hop Supa National."
  5. ^ Ben Thompson (20 June 2004). "Blue Lines, Massive Attack". The Observer. http://observer.guardian.co.uk/omm/story/0,,1240048,00.html. Retrieved 13 October 2009.  
  6. ^ BBC Northern Ireland - Blue Lines
  7. ^ BBC.co.uk - Unfinished Sympathy
  8. ^ "Massive Attack - Blue Lines". ChartStats.com. http://www.chartstats.com/albuminfo.php?id=6462. Retrieved 13 October 2009.  
  9. ^ "Massive Attack - Daydreaming". ChartStats.com. http://www.chartstats.com/songinfo.php?id=18222. Retrieved 13 October 2009.  
  10. ^ "Massive - Unfinished Sympathy". ChartStats.com. http://www.chartstats.com/songinfo.php?id=18606. Retrieved 13 October 2009.  
  11. ^ "Massive Attack - Safe From Harm". ChartStats.com. http://www.chartstats.com/songinfo.php?id=18929. Retrieved 13 October 2009.  
  12. ^ "Massive Attack - Massive Attack (EP)". ChartStats.com. http://www.chartstats.com/songinfo.php?id=19577. Retrieved 13 October 2009.  

External links


Simple English

Blue Lines
Studio album by Massive Attack
Released 8 April 1991 (UK)
6 August 1991 (US)
Recorded 1990, Bristol and London
Genre Trip hop
Length 45:02
Label Virgin Records, Circa
Producer Massive Attack, Cameron McVey, Jonny Dollar
Massive Attack chronology
Blue Lines
(1991)
Protection
(1994)

Blue Lines is the first album by British electronica group Massive Attack, released on 8 April 1991 (see 1991 in music) by Virgin Records.

Blue Lines is usually considered the first trip hop album,[1] although the term was not used commonly until years later. The album was a success in the United Kingdom, reaching #13 in the albums chart; sales were limited elsewhere. A mix of electronic music, hip hop, dub music, '70s soul music and reggae, the album established Massive Attack as one of the most best British bands of the 1990s and the founder of trip hop's Bristol Sound.[2] Music critic Simon Reynolds stated that the album also marked a change in electronic/dance music, "a shift toward a more interior, meditational sound. The songs on Blue Lines run at 'spliff' tempos — from a mellow, moonwalking 90 beats per minute ...down to a positively torpid 67 bpm."[3] The group also drew inspiration from concept albums in various genres by artists such as Pink Floyd, Public Image Ltd., Billy Cobham, Herbie Hancock and Isaac Hayes.[3]

Blue Lines featured breakbeats, sampling, and rapping on a number of tracks, but the design of the album differed from common hip hop. Massive Attack approached the American-born hip hop movement from an underground British perspective, as well as incorporating live instruments into the mixes. It features the vocals of Shara Nelson and Horace Andy, along with the rapping of Tricky Kid. Blue Lines proved to be popular in the club scene, as well as on college radio stations.[4]

Daddy G said about the making of the album:

We were lazy Bristol twats. It was Neneh Cherry who kicked our arses and got us in the studio. We recorded a lot at her house, in her baby's room. It stank for months and eventually we found a dirty nappy behind a radiator. I was still DJing, but what we were trying to do was create dance music for the head, rather than the feet. I think it's our freshest album, we were at our strongest then.[5]

References

  1. Guy Garcia (25 October 1998). "Trip-Hop Reinvents Itself to Take on the World". The New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/1998/10/25/arts/music-trip-hop-reinvents-itself-to-take-on-the-world.html?pagewanted=all. Retrieved 13 October 2009. 
  2. Schwartz, Mark. "Planet Rock: Hip Hop Supa National." In The Vibe History of Hip-hop, ed. Alan Light, 361-72. New York: Three Rivers Press, 1999.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Reynolds, Simon (1998). Generation Ecstasy: Into the World of Techno and Rave Culture. Little, Brown and Co.. ISBN 0415923735. 
  4. Schwartz, Mark. "Planet Rock: Hip Hop Supa National."
  5. Ben Thompson (20 June 2004). "Blue Lines, Massive Attack". The Observer. http://observer.guardian.co.uk/omm/story/0,,1240048,00.html. Retrieved 13 October 2009. 








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