Rock Review Vinyl

Bluetones: Tarred By The Britpop Brush?

Title: The Singles

Label: Demon

In many ways, I’m still trying to make my mind up abut The Bluetones.

Were they the next step from the baggy Madchester era of music?

Were they an antidote to Britpop as they hit the scene as that genre’s popularity was on the wane?

Were they just an inoffensive, bland indie band whose songs all sounded the same? Did they in fact add delicacy, nuance, subtlety and fine-dining sonic flavours?

How could you even doubt such artists after hearing the track, Bluetonic?

Bluetones vinyl singles collection review

What I do know is that Bottlegarden – the band’s original name – were formed in 1994 in Hounslow and occupied by Adam Devlin on guitar, drummer Ed Chester, Mark Morriss had the microphone in his hand while brother Scott noodled the bass.

During 1995, the group released two singles, Are You Blue or Are You Blind? and the above-mentioned Bluetonic.

They prompted attention but it was the 1996 release of the track Slight Return, which pushed the group to the No.2 spot in the charts.

The associated album, Expecting to Fly, debuted at number one on the British charts. Later, they would be tarred by the Britpop brush.

The genre almost grabbed them by the ankles and sucked them into the same drowning quicksand pit. Unfortunate.

Bluetones vinyl singles collection review

This collection of singles, providing a decent master, on vinyl for the first time (blue, actually) and spanning two discs in a gatefold sleeve, was originally released in 2002.

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