Who still remembers or listens to 90s songs? With Blur’s Song 2 we go back to 1997, when the English band releases their fifth album, entitled “Blur”. I remind you that the first album is from 1991 and is titled “Leisure”; so in just 7 years the band has been very active!
Blur’s Song, an award-winning song
In 1997, at the MTV Video Music Awards, Song 2 received the nominations for best band video and best alternative video. In 1998 at the Brit Awards it got the nominations for best single and best “British” video.
Listeners of BBC Radio 1 in 1998 voted it among the top 15 best songs of all time. The NME placed it in second place in the Top of the singles of 1997; in 2011 it awarded Song 2 the 79th place in its top 150 of the best songs of the last 15 years.
How this britpop/grunge song was born
In the 1990s, the britpop competed with American grunge music. They were two completely different styles, which also attracted different listeners, yet they waged war a bit.
However the Blur guitarist, Graham Coxon, did not disdain grunge. So the band decided to try some sounds closer to that style, to make fun of it a little and show that even the britpop musicians can do well grunge. And they proved it great!
The song was born as a joke for the record company. Blur presented this song decidedly outside the box, very chaotic and with that “woo-hoo” repeated in the refrain. The record company decided that the song was winning and overwhelming! The meeting point between britpop and grunge.
Why is it called Song 2?
Why is it called Song 2? In fact, this name does not appear in the lyrics. Some argue that the song initially had to be titled “Woo-Hoo”, which is in the lyrics.
Band leader Damon Albarn explained that they had not yet found a name for the song and simply called it “song 2”, because on the album “Blur” it is the second track after Beetlebum. It lasts two minutes and two seconds and it came in second place in the UK charts.
The lyrics has no real meaning, it is a set of disconnected sentences, which seem to be pronounced by someone who is sleeping or is in a state of hypnotic trance.
The music video for Song 2
The director of the video is Sophie Muller, who has worked for many artists on the British music scene, such as Eurythmics, Annie Lennox, Coldplay, Pink, The Killers, Bjork, The Cure, Kings of Leon. For Blur she also made the videos of Beetlebum, Tender, On Your Own.
The location of the video is a recording room with the walls covered with a somewhat old wallpaper. Blur starts playing but at 0:45 minutes Damon Albarn’s screams, that resonate in the speakers, make the other musicians beat on the walls of the room. Even the singer starts to float and slam on the walls. This is repeated at 1:25 with the addition of a strong wind and objects flying over the band members.
The set is very similar to that of another Blur video, “Popscene”.
There are several cover versions of Song 2. We remember those of My Chemical Romance and Plain White Ts. Song 2 has also become the soundtrack of the FIFA game: Road To World Cup 98. In addition to becoming an anthem for the goals of the Italian Juventus team.