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1. ‘She's So High’

Single, released 15/10/91. Also on Leisure’, 27/8/91. Produced by Steve Lovell and Steve Power.

Re-named Blur in November 1989 over dinner with Food Records Dave Balfe and Andy Ross at Soho Pizzeria, the band signed to Food the following March. For their debut single they returned to the first song they had ever written together. Shes So High had been conceived in March 1988 as a loose rehearsal jam based around a four-chord sequence supplied by Alex James, the last member to join. The sequence - the same for the verses and chorus - was simplified by Graham who also wrote some lyrics to the verse while Damon was on holiday in Spain. Shes So High remains the bands most democratically-written song. Overseen by the former Julian Cope producer Steve Lovell and his colleague Steve Power, it was recorded at Battery Studios in Willesdon in June 1990 during the World Cup.

Progress was slow. The looped bass took two days. The drums took a week. Lovell and Power doubted their musical ability - particularly Alexs - and insisted on “looping” as much as possible, mechanically repeating the same one-or-two-bar bass part troughout the song. But Blur were delighted to be in the same studio as the Stone Roses had used for Fools Gold. And Alex was convinced Shes So High was destined for number one.

Although lyrically negligible - a complaint common to much of Blurs early material - Shes So High is both a masterful debut and proof positive that emotions in pop songs need not rely on the vocabulary of the writer. Simple and ingenuous, it has a ghostly melody and a daringly unhurried tempo - the only busy sound is the bass guitar - and in its long middle section, announced by Grahams backwards guitar (2.24), the song bursts into a six-second passage of disconsolate beauty (3.32-3.38). Before the backwards guitar finally exits - a full 90 seconds later - it has taken the song on a near-psychedelic excursion without a single note being wasted or the attention of the listener wavering.

While sluggish in material terms - it only got to number 48 - the songs artless charm and popularity reserve a place for it in Blurs live set even today.

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