The Universal

Discussion about the band and related projects.

Moderators: Caitlin, MrMagpie, tom_cas1

User avatar
Pavlich
Posts: 185
Joined: 30 Apr 2015, 00:15

Re: The Universal

Post by Pavlich » 25 Jan 2018, 03:04

Roll With It is a better song.

It sounds way more catchy and doesn't seem to be written to be intentionally catchy, whereas Country House has a pretty dumb main lyric and delivery. Roll With It also has that nice cadence in the melody's hook and has this undercurrent of another feel to it. Guess Country House was brighter and the video probably helped.

User avatar
aldamasta
Posts: 1438
Joined: 02 Sep 2014, 05:00
Location: Kentucky, United States
Contact:

Re: The Universal

Post by aldamasta » 26 Jan 2018, 20:18

i don't agree that Roll With It is better. And you'll be hard pressed to find any Oasis song with better lyrics than a blur song. That's not necessarily a bad thing, as I adore Oasis, but Noel knows his lyrics are shit.

I like Roll With It, but I think it's pretty one dimensional, whereas Country House has a few layers to it beyond the cheesiness.

metalhipslop
Posts: 803
Joined: 16 Oct 2014, 02:13
Location: The Great White North

Re: The Universal

Post by metalhipslop » 27 Jan 2018, 08:48

Roll With It is the better the song. I think Country House represents my least favorite side of blur (especially the video). but, it doesn't matter that much because blur are the way better band.
Textin' abbreviates the brain. Aspirin takes away the pain.

User avatar
Mallard No. 22
Posts: 2433
Joined: 01 Oct 2014, 07:46
Location: North East UK

Re: The Universal

Post by Mallard No. 22 » 30 Jan 2018, 08:15

aldamasta wrote:I like Roll With It, but I think it's pretty one dimensional, whereas Country House has a few layers to it beyond the cheesiness.
Yes, I agree.
Pavlich wrote: Guess Country House was brighter and the video probably helped.
I am not sure if the sales of different formats (& how these were logged) had a bearing on it as well?
"Everybody's Doing It...So Do It Too...."

Styopa
Posts: 54
Joined: 23 Apr 2015, 12:08

Re: The Universal

Post by Styopa » 30 Jan 2018, 10:03

Agree with the comments above, Roll With It is pretty one dimensional, and in my opinion a bit of a plod, whereas Country House has a complexity to it which at least makes it interesting. It's been played to death over the years and in some ways it represents the worst excesses of that period but it has a kind of theatrical quality which makes it stand out. The intro, middle eight, outro and lyrics are all fairly distinct and there is some excellent guitar playing by Graham.

User avatar
Mallard No. 22
Posts: 2433
Joined: 01 Oct 2014, 07:46
Location: North East UK

Re: The Universal

Post by Mallard No. 22 » 06 Feb 2018, 07:38

Yes, good assessment Styopa.
"Everybody's Doing It...So Do It Too...."

damon008
Posts: 69
Joined: 08 Oct 2017, 14:09

Re: The Universal

Post by damon008 » 07 Feb 2018, 05:04

the country house has to many words and damon struggles for breath singing it these days, universal is pretty but i dont know, a bit tacky these days and a bit dated if you get what u im saying
______________
i got 99 problems on rotation but no girl is always numver 1 lol

Styopa
Posts: 54
Joined: 23 Apr 2015, 12:08

Re: The Universal

Post by Styopa » 07 Feb 2018, 17:18

Universal tacky? I don't hear it like that at all. What about it do you find tacky?

User avatar
aldamasta
Posts: 1438
Joined: 02 Sep 2014, 05:00
Location: Kentucky, United States
Contact:

Re: The Universal

Post by aldamasta » 08 Feb 2018, 17:31

Yet again, I disagree, damon008. Maybe if The Universal had synth strings it could sound a bit tacky (not convinced, as I will always adore The Smiths' There Is A Light... regardless of synth strings), but I think The Universal was never tacky and I won't agree with it sounding dated either. Lots of Britpop tunes from 95 have aged poorly, one could argue. The Universal is not one.

dougharrison
Posts: 243
Joined: 08 Sep 2014, 03:01

Re: The Universal

Post by dougharrison » 08 Feb 2018, 17:57

I think that the phrase "tacky" is perhaps a result of a long running UK advertising campaign. British Gas have used the song here for a long long long time, often with cutesy visuals. Last time I saw Blur at HP there was a teenage girl (maybe 14) with her dad saying "I can't wait for them to play the British Gas song" which I get is a young girl who had perhaps only had TMW released in her lifetime, its what's accessible, familiar to her and how she relates to it (and possibly by extension Blur.)

Now obviously this is anecdotal, I'm not claiming she is representative of teenagers going to see Blur and having spent most of the past 10 years outside of the UK i'm not really the best person to judge whether the British Gas/Universal link has been overplayed or not, but that's my suspicion the "tacky" claim is a case of over-saturation.

Again the rights and wrongs of using music in commercials has a) been done to death b) not something I'm really qualified to comment on and c) quite complicated and should be looked at on a case by case basis. The British Gas/Universal deal doesn't bother me in the slightest - Far more 'concerned' by Damon's staunch anti-commercialisation claims and (presumably financially motivated) constant endorsing of Apple products, but again that's none of my business really and probably even then not as black and white as I'm portraying it to be.

damon008
Posts: 69
Joined: 08 Oct 2017, 14:09

Re: The Universal

Post by damon008 » 08 Feb 2018, 20:35

yes yes that,s what i meen its to me just advert lick. and i cant shake it out of my head6. i dont meen its tacky like wake me up before you go go or anything like that, but yoy hear the strings and think of it being used on telly and ,,, radio.but also strings are a pet hate of mine. i hate a bittersweet simphony to, i just cant listen to strings in brit pop
______________
i got 99 problems on rotation but no girl is always numver 1 lol

stephen
Posts: 548
Joined: 25 Sep 2014, 12:53

Re: The Universal

Post by stephen » 09 Feb 2018, 11:47

damon008 wrote:yes yes that,s what i meen its to me just advert lick. and i cant shake it out of my head6. i dont meen its tacky like wake me up before you go go or anything like that, but yoy hear the strings and think of it being used on telly and ,,, radio.but also strings are a pet hate of mine. i hate a bittersweet simphony to, i just cant listen to strings in brit pop
I know what you mean. It's gone from being overlooked to overused.
Westway wrote:pyongyang and mirrorball are really good

Styopa
Posts: 54
Joined: 23 Apr 2015, 12:08

Re: The Universal

Post by Styopa » 09 Feb 2018, 12:34

The same part of the track was also used as the motif for the No Distance Left to Run documentary. Did that come before or after the British Gas advert campaign? In any case, to echo some of the comments above, there was a turning point in the history of the song where it went from being relatively forgotten to suddenly a seminal song for the band. I'm sure Damon said as much, he may even have said it on the NDLTR doc.

It possibly has been over saturated but I can still listen to it and enjoy it, in a way that I can't for example Song 2.

User avatar
Mallard No. 22
Posts: 2433
Joined: 01 Oct 2014, 07:46
Location: North East UK

Re: The Universal

Post by Mallard No. 22 » 14 Feb 2018, 05:31

stephen wrote:I know what you mean. It's gone from being overlooked to overused.
Yes, that happens to so many songs - and people forget, or never knew, their impact in their original context.

What is annoying is when e.g. the teenage girl who likes 'the British Gas song' hears another Blur song afterwards. She is not keen on it, not because it is naff, but because she can't relate it to anything.
"Everybody's Doing It...So Do It Too...."

User avatar
AdvertBreak
Posts: 5571
Joined: 24 Jan 2015, 17:34
Location: Gorgeous Wiltshire

Re: The Universal

Post by AdvertBreak » 14 Feb 2018, 09:24

I have a compilation from 2000 called The Best TV Ads...Ever!, with songs from adverts on it, and the Universal is on CD2

So its been associated with them for a long time

Though the current adverts that have them I remember beginning in late 2008, in the final days of my nostalgia. Before that, British Gas adverts had like little gas flame characters so I was ashamed to see them go so they could start producing really ugly looking adverts with bobbleheaded people living on planets.

Post Reply