Massive Attack, 'Blue Lines', 1991Lost Blue Heaven
Massive Attack - 'Blue Lines' Wild Bunch Records (WBR LP1, 1991)
Recorded in a bedroom-turned-studio and bankrolled by Neneh Cherry, “Blue Lines” is widely-considered the magnum opus of ‘trip-hop’, the term later coined for the genre established by the album. Born from Bristol’s Wild Bunch sound system, Massive Attack’s debut encapsulates the far-reaching black diaspora music that, as DJs and emcees, the group had explored in Bristol’s famed Dugout Club.
While capturing the attention of relatively few across the Atlantic, “Blue Lines” was a runaway in the UK, with its unique fusion of hip hop, soul, R&B, dub and electronic music firmly establishing Massive Attack as one of the most innovative British groups of the 1990s. The album's idiosyncratic approach - characterised by splicings of scratching, sampling, muscular dub bass lines, and West Country-delivered lyricism - showcases the group's genre-bending creative breadth.
While not reaching the same cult-status as later contributions, “Blue Lines” is a dynamic statement of intent and the raison d'être of one of the most influential genres in British music.
Graded using the Goldmine Standard. Graded conservatively, cover and media in VG+ bracket