Blur – M.O.R.

Well, “M.O.R.” (which stands for ‘middle of the road’ which is way less cool because it’s spelled out) is not my favourite single off the album, being a bunch of decent musical ideas slapped together around some stupid “I’m a boy and you’re a girl” lyrics and the whole thing sounds inescapably 90s. Unlike most good Blur singles there’s not much going on musically to make it stand out from other songs; it’s just a standard rock song, the kind that dozens of worse bands churn out and wonder why they don’t make it. The version on here is the “Alan Moulder Road Version,” which has a few production tweaks like making the intro noise 1/10th of a second longer and having more space between the various tracks, making it sound a bit more live-like, and the lead vocals more prominent. It’s more or less the same song, kids.

There’s one B-side and two remixes: “Swallows in the Heatwave” is 2:32 long, has really distorted vocals and guitar, some vocal hooks, a first line of “I want to contribute to natural selection” and it’s almost a good song. But not quite, because it’s so obviously unfinished. It’s very close to being a good song, though. It might be better to listen to during an actual heatwave. It’s winter now, though. Cold, dark, winter with three months left to go. It’s my favourite B-side of this Blur era, which is sad since it’s not that exciting of a song and sounds like it was recorded on a practice stage.

Then there are the remixes. First there’s an eight-minute long remix of “Movin’ On,” my least favourite song on the last album! Yes, if you thought the cheesy keyboard noises and Vengaboys-like silly three-note ascending riff and meaningless lyrics were good and you think they’d be even better repeated over and over and over again and be broken down and built up again over synth drums then this remix is for you! Then there’s a “Moby Remix” of “Beetlebum,” which is surprisingly neat in that it actually sounds like a Moby song! Turns out ol’ Beets worked surprisingly well as an ambient mumbler! Now let me never listen to it again and die.

5/10

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