Album of the Day
With PARKLIFE, Blur became the toast of the U.K. rock scene, but if they were feeling pressured for a follow-up, 1995's THE GREAT ESCAPE doesn't sound like it. The album's “The Universal” “Stereotypes” and “Charmless Man” soared up the English singles chart, and its “Country House” became the quartet's first U.K. No.1, famously beating out Oasis' “Roll With It” for the top slot. But a closer look at Damon Albarn's lyrics reveal that, behind the inventive and highly melodic music, the album is preoccupied with loneliness and the grind of daily life. That contrast helps make THE GREAT ESCAPE one of Blur's most satisfying works, and the disc's worth of bonus material in the Special Edition – with live tracks and rarities including all single B-sides – makes a great album even better.