The best pop album of the 90's
Jason R. Conger | Tampa, FL USA | 10/05/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The Great Escape is, in my humble opinion, the best and most underrated pop album of the 90's. It is an album where each song doesn't necessarily flow together and yet to the listener, it feels like the album created a world. In that world are characters that are pretty bummed out. Damon Albarn sympathizes with these characters, it's as if he makes fun of them and becomes friends with them at the same time. He narrates what they do, but understands why they do them. He treats them as if they just took the wrong path by mistake and now they're paying for it. But what I love most about The Great Escape is how diverse the themes are. This album has everything: humor ("Mr. Robinson's Quango", "Dan Abnormal"), wit ("Charmless Man", "Top Man"), optimism ("Could Be You"), pessimism ("Fade Away", "He Thought of Cars"), fantasy ("The Universal"), and desperation ("Entertain Me", a perfect gem and Blur's crowning achievement). The songs are tight and structured; there's nothing indulgent about The Great Escape. The real true great escape of the album is the final minute of carnival music at the end. It's as if Dan Abnomal, Ernold Same, and Mr. Robinson (and everybody else) actually decided on going to a carnival and forget about their problems for a day. If you love this album the way I do, it will probably make you watery-eyed.
Rarely ever have songs so simple sounded so profound. The Great Escape is Blur's Revolver, a wide-ranging and stunning masterpiece that should be considered vital. A+"
Tezcatlipoca | Espinho,Portugal | 07/31/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Of Blur's english trilogy "The Great Escape" has alway struck me as the less inspired record probably because of the two or three annoying songs it has in it(the Ray Davies aping "Ernold Same"at the top of them) and at the same time for sounding less fresh and a bit more designed for success than previous efforts.
While far from being a bad record "The Great Escape"doesn't seem to recapture "Modern Life is Rubbish"s innocence or to present a band at the absolute top of their game as "Parklife"did.
But all this is forgotten in the presence of the several cuts that do honor their name.And they're not as few as one might think since there's about 8-9 songs that are actually compelling and, as usual with Blur, fun to listen to(Stereotypes,Entertain me,He thought of Cars,Top Man and Fade Away among my favorites).
A more than worthy addition to their catalog though not the best starting place for beginners.