Blur 21 - Blur
Metascore
92

Universal acclaim - based on 17 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 16 out of 17
  2. Negative: 0 out of 17
  1. Jul 31, 2012
    90
    There were plenty of other great British bands of the '90s but none of their peers--Oasis, Suede, Pulp, Radiohead--covered as much stylistic ground or wound up with a catalog as rich as this ridiculously generous box set handily proves.
  2. Jul 31, 2012
    90
    Blur 21: The Box documents [the band's evolution] with a staggering breadth of material-even the B-sides and unreleased material feel uniformly strong. It's a complete and necessary document for a band so important to their country's music and to music in general.
  3. Jul 31, 2012
    85
    For its breadth and complexity, [Blur 21] actually tells a simple story: Blur are a band that did an astonishing amount of different things really, really well.
  4. Aug 20, 2012
    80
    As with the Beatles, the outtakes and rarities are the best place to appreciate the abundance of songwriting chops and interpersonal chemistry Blur had at their disposal. [Sep 2012, p.118]
  5. Jul 19, 2012
    90
    You don't get bands like Blur very often. They deserve great boxsets, and this feels like one. [Aug 2012, p.85]
  6. Jul 19, 2012
    100
    Blur 21's extraordinary warts'n'all scope makes its subject's odyssey momentous and tangible. [Aug 2012, p.98]
  7. Jul 31, 2012
    83
    The bonus material contains an abundance of amazing, weird, and brilliant moments. But the type of extras included-like a disc of demos from Blur's early years, when the band went by Seymour--will likely only interest completists.
  8. Jul 30, 2012
    95
    It's a treasure trove of Britpop and English musical history, a veritable panoply of musical goodness.
  9. Jul 26, 2012
    80
    Still, if 21 represents all there is or is ever going to be, it's hard not to be hugely impressed. As sarcophagi go, it's a spectacularly well-appointed one.
  10. Jul 31, 2012
    89
    Unlike many career-spanning sets, Blur 21 is perfectly arranged, with each studio album living on its own disc, accompanied by another disc of era-specific bonus material like singles, compilation tracks, remixes and more.
  11. Jul 23, 2012
    90
    This is a glorious summation of Blur's career, placing them firmly amongst the very best bands of all time.
  12. Dec 13, 2012
    89
    Twenty-one discs address it in explosively comprehensive detail for The Box, all seven of Blur's full-lengths now doubled by a brimming parallel disc of era singles, B-sides, demos, and live swaths.
  13. Oct 1, 2012
    90
    It's all here - all seven studio albums, which, despite the hype, remain truly fantastic. [No.91, p.54]
  14. Jul 24, 2012
    100
    Teeming with B-sides, live tracks, and demos, much of it previously unreleased, 21 is both exhaustive and indispensable.
  15. Jul 31, 2012
    90
    There'll never be another band like them. And if this is really it and they leave Blur to the history books, then it's a perfect way to remember this unique, occasionally annoying, but genuinely quite amazing band.
  16. Jul 27, 2012
    60
    The five and a half hours of unreleased demos/live recordings do give a warmly inclusive insider's feel but there's nothing I'd listen to more than a couple of times.
User Score
8.4

Universal acclaim- based on 29 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 3
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 3
  3. Negative: 0 out of 3
  1. Aug 6, 2012
    10
    Blur, to some this may seem like a one hit wonder that says woohoo a lot. But you probably only think that because your a f**king American. Blur is life, it is molding, it is change. It is everything good and a little evil. It is blur. Full Review »
  2. Aug 13, 2012
    10
    This band is magic, possessing maybe the most varied and interesting back catalogue of any band of the past two decades. If you like Blur, this box set is a no-brainer. If you're new, dive on in - you won't be disappointed. Full Review »
  3. Oct 11, 2012
    10
    Simply the best collection ever released. I was unfortunate to be completely skint when Blur released their singles boxset back at the end of the century... this more than makes up for it.

    Each album is provided in it's remastered form, with a bonus disc containing B-Sides and outtakes from the period of the album. Also included are 4 discs of rarities, 3 DVDs including Showtime (which fans will know), and more importantly for me (as it was the night I saw the band, and had the pleasure of meeting them afterwards) the 1999 singles show at Wembley.

    A limited edition one-sided 7" vinyl and a well-produced art book finish things off nicely.

    Being a stickler for keeping collections such as this in mint condition, I'm happy to say that the box includes a download code which gives you access to 320kbps MP3s of every track, so the CDs can stay in their protective shrink wrap. Sadly the DVDs are not available for (legal) download via the code.

    The contents of the box do everything they're supposed to do - providing an improved experience of the albums you had, and those you didn't. Even though I had all the albums already, this boxset makes for amazing value given the extra content you get.

    There is no legitimate reason to not give this collection a 10. If you aren't a fan, you didn't buy it, and if you are a fan you will LOVE it.
    Full Review »