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Tracklist

Safe From Harm5:18
One Love4:46
Blue Lines4:21
Be Thankful For What You've Got4:08
Five Man Army6:03
Unfinished Sympathy5:07
Daydreaming4:14
Lately4:23
Hymn Of The Big Wheel6:36

Credits (9)

Notes

"Be Thankful For What You've Got" is a cover of William DeVaughn's original version.

"Unfinished Sympathy" is sampling / scratching the chorus in introduction and / or at circa 0:50” of the track "Planetary Citizen", which was originally performed in 1976 by John McLaughlin (aka Mahavishnu (2)) and his Mahavishnu Orchestra, on the album "Inner Worlds".

Singles:

Daydreaming
Unfinished Sympathy
Be Thankful For What You've Got
Safe From Harm

Special release:

Massive Attack E.P.

Versions

Filter by
    113 versions
    Image, In Your Collection, Wantlist, or Inventory
    Version DetailsData Quality
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991-08-06, CDBlue Lines
    CD, Album
    Virgin – CDV 3126UK1991UK1991
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991, VinylBlue Lines
    LP, Album
    Wild Bunch Records – WBRLP 1, Circa – WBRLP 1Europe1991Europe1991
    Recently Edited
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991-04-08, VinylBlue Lines
    LP, Album, Stereo, Sonopress Pressing
    Circa – WBRLP 1, Virgin – 211 316Europe1991Europe1991
    Recently Edited
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991, CDBlue Lines
    CD, Album, Stereo
    Wild Bunch Records – WBRCD 1, Wild Bunch Records – 261 316Europe1991Europe1991
    Recently Edited
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991, CassetteBlue Lines
    Cassette, Album
    Wild Bunch Records – WBRMC 1, Circa – 411 316Europe1991Europe1991
    Recently Edited
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991-04-08, CDBlue Lines
    CD, Album
    Wild Bunch Records – WBRCD 1Europe1991Europe1991
    Recently Edited
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991, CDBlue Lines
    CD, Album
    Virgin – 2-91685US1991US1991
    Recently Edited
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991, CDBlue Lines
    CD, Album, Stereo
    Wild Bunch Records – WBRCD 1, Circa – 0777 7 86228 2 6Europe1991Europe1991
    Recently Edited
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991, VinylBlue Lines
    LP, Album
    Virgin – VG 50550, Circa – VG 50550Greece1991Greece1991
    Recently Edited
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991, CassetteBlue Lines
    Cassette, Album
    Wild Bunch Records – WBRMC 1, Circa – 7862282UK & Europe1991UK & Europe1991
    Recently Edited
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991-06-01, CDBlue Lines
    CD, Album, Promo
    Virgin – VJCP-28035, Circa – VJCP-28035Japan1991Japan1991
    Recently Edited
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991, CDBlue Lines
    CD, Album
    Virgin Records Canada – CDV 3126, Circa – CDV 3126Canada1991Canada1991
    Recently Edited
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991, CDBlue Lines
    CD, Album, Club Edition, Reissue
    Virgin – 0777 7 86228 2 6, Virgin Records America, Inc. – 0777 7 86228 2 6US1991US1991
    Recently Edited
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991-04-08, VinylBlue Lines
    LP, Album
    Circa – WBRLP 1Italy1991Italy1991
    Recently Edited
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991-04-08, CassetteBlue Lines
    Cassette, Album, SR, Dolby HX Pro
    Virgin – 91685-4, Wild Bunch Records – 4-91685US1991US1991
    Recently Edited
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991-04-08, VinylBlue Lines
    LP, Album, Limited Edition, Mailer sleeve
    Wild Bunch Records – WBRLX 1, Wild Bunch Records – WBRLP 1UK1991UK1991
    New Submission
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991, CassetteBlue Lines
    Cassette, Album
    Wild Bunch Records – WBRMC 1, Circa – 0777 7 86228 4 0Netherlands1991Netherlands1991
    New Submission
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991, VinylBlue Lines
    LP, Album
    Wild Bunch Records – WBRLP 1, Circa – WBRLP 1Europe1991Europe1991
    Recently Edited
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991, CassetteBlue Lines
    Cassette, Album, Stereo
    Wild Bunch Records – WBRMC 1Turkey1991Turkey1991
    New Submission
    Cover of Pre-release, 1991, CassettePre-release
    Cassette, Promo
    Circa – hi-8UK1991UK1991
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991, CassetteBlue Lines
    Cassette, Album
    Wild Bunch Records – WBRMC 1Italy1991Italy1991
    New Submission
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991, CassetteBlue Lines
    Cassette, Album
    Virgin – VL4 3126Canada1991Canada1991
    New Submission
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991, CDBlue Lines
    CD, Album, Stereo
    Wild Bunch Records – WBRCD 1Europe1991Europe1991
    New Submission
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991, CassetteBlue Lines
    Cassette, Album, AR, Dolby HX Pro
    Virgin – 4-91685, Virgin – 91685-4US1991US1991
    New Submission
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991, CDBlue Lines
    CD, Album
    Wild Bunch Records – WBRCD 1, Circa – 0777 7 86228 2 6UK & Europe1991UK & Europe1991
    New Submission
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991, VinylBlue Lines
    LP, Album
    Wild Bunch Records – WBRLP 1Europe1991Europe1991
    New Submission
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991, CassetteBlue Lines
    Cassette, Album, Promo, AR, Dolby HX Pro
    Virgin – 91685-4US1991US1991
    New Submission
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991, CassetteBlue Lines
    Cassette, Album
    Wild Bunch Records – WBRMC 1, Circa – 0777 7 86228 4 0, Virgin – 077778622840United Arab Emirates1991United Arab Emirates1991
    New Submission
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991, CDBlue Lines
    CD, Album
    Wild Bunch Records – WBRCD 1, Helicon Records – WBRCD 1Israel1991Israel1991
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991, VinylBlue Lines
    LP, Album, Stereo
    Wild Bunch Records – WBRLP1UK1991UK1991
    Recently Edited
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991-06-05, CDBlue Lines
    CD, Album
    Virgin – VJCP-28035, Circa – VJCP-28035Japan1991Japan1991
    New Submission
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991, CassetteBlue Lines
    Cassette, Album
    Wild Bunch Records – WBRMC 1, Circa – 0777 7 86228 4 0Middle East1991Middle East1991
    New Submission
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991, CDBlue Lines
    CD, Album
    Wild Bunch Records – WBRCD 1, Circa – 0777 7 86228 2 6Netherlands1991Netherlands1991
    New Submission
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991-04-08, VinylBlue Lines
    LP, Album
    Wild Bunch Records – WBRLP 1, Wild Bunch Records – 211 316UK1991UK1991
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991, CDBlue Lines
    CD, Album
    Wild Bunch Records – WBRCD 1Australia1991Australia1991
    New Submission
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991, CDBlue Lines
    CD, Album
    Virgin Music Canada – V2 86228, Virgin Music Canada – V2 0777 7 86228 2 6Canada1991Canada1991
    New Submission
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991, VinylBlue Lines
    LP, Album
    Wild Bunch Records – WBRLP 1, Circa – WBRLP 1Europe1991Europe1991
    New Submission
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991, CDBlue Lines
    CD, Album, Stereo
    Wild Bunch Records – WBRCD 1, Circa – 0777 7 86228 2 6Europe1991Europe1991
    New Submission
    Cover of Blue Lines, 1991, CassetteBlue Lines
    Cassette, Album
    Virgin – V4-86228US1991US1991
    New Submission
    Cover of Blue Lines , 1991-04-19, CassetteBlue Lines
    Cassette, Advance, Album, Stereo, Non Dolby
    Virgin – noneUS1991US1991
    New Submission

    Recommendations

    Reviews

    • tobymessy's avatar
      tobymessy
      unfinished sympathy - ten words etc etc etc etc etc etc etc etc
      • BakelitFan's avatar
        BakelitFan
        Great pressing. Great Classic trip-hop music. Great quality. Nice shiny bass, big soundstage, clear vocals, u need first clean the record. No pops, no issues, worth every penny.
          • _ZERO_'s avatar
            _ZERO_
            Edited 2 months ago
            Good sounding record. Absolute bargain
            Even in 2024 at $50 new.
            • FrankChen111's avatar
              FrankChen111
              Excellent and probably no need to buy early press. Trip hop classic
              • pompom's avatar
                pompom
                Original track of "Daydreaming" is from 1984 by Wally Badarou – Mambo
                • Sodarian's avatar
                  Sodarian
                  My copy has everything (matrix, runouts, etc) but the front barcode which is that of the later reissues with 0 77778 62281 9 as the barcode printed on the cover no sticker came with mine. Weird I don’t know if mine is an OG 91 pressing or a 21st century reissue it’s confusing
                  • Len-Bo's avatar
                    Len-Bo
                    Amazing pressing of an amazing album - sounds fantastic, absolutely flat, no clicks nor cracks. Bought ist for € 15,- new and sealed - do it.
                    • Malyev's avatar
                      Malyev
                      The best trip-hop album of all time. I like this
                      • renegadeviking's avatar
                        Once upon a time, Blue Lines was praised for launching the " trip-hop " style. I think it's more meaningful to think of it as a slightly modernized soul album. It has one straightforward, faithful cover of a soul classic ("Be Thankful For What You've Got"). Other songs incorporate hip-hop and electronica, but retain the same basic tone: romantic, sensual, overtly emotional. Only "Five Man Army" exhibits the slow, dank clatter of "trip-hop" (see also "Inertia Creeps" on Mezzanine ), but it's really yet another classicist song, drawing heavily from dub reggae. If you're looking for startling, original musical ideas, they are not here -- you might try Tricky's Maxinquaye instead.

                        Perhaps the one innovation that should be credited to this album is the concept of a band as a rotating, anonymized collective. That's much more common these days, thanks to Gorillaz , which is why Heligoland made less of a splash than I think it should have. But the first side of Blue Lines still seems diverse and creative, with a new lead vocalist on each of the first five songs. "Safe From Harm" gains such epochal, menacing drive from its monstrous bassline (probably the best in all of electronica, and imitated for years afterward by such artists as Primal Scream and Bjork ), and the histrionic dramatism of Shara Nelson's vocal, that it's somehow possible to ignore the very awkward lyrics ("you can free the world, you can free my mind" does not connote peril).

                        But then, Blue Lines has to be more than the sum of its parts, since none of the individual parts explains what makes the album special. The music sounds simple -- a few synth-chords here, an echo there, or a piano loop thrown in. The second side repeats the blueprint of the first, almost sounding like take two of the same thing, "Unfinished Sympathy" as a reprise/counterpart to "Safe From Harm," "Daydreaming" repeating the rap dialogue of "Blue Lines." This became a standard technique for Massive Attack: both Protection and Mezzanine have the same structure, with all the surprise and stylistic novelty presented immediately in the first few songs. Lastly, among the vocalists, Robert Del Naja is a noticeably better rapper than the other two guys. Tricky's heavily accented delivery is a little sluggish, Del Naja runs circles around him. In Tricky's defense, though, his moody self-absorption is effective here as a dark contrast to the other vocalists.

                        The secret ingredient is the ethereal, gentle production: the soft synth background in "Safe From Harm" (a powerful contrast to the bassline) and the title track, the slight tonal shift around 1:45 of "Blue Lines," right on Del Naja's cute "on my toes / comatose" rhyme, subtly lifting the song from the murk. The title track is a real gem, even more than "Safe From Harm." The fast rap cadences and the gravelly voices of Tricky and Del Naja suggest some lingering darkness, but their voices are hushed low in the mix, and don't break the fragile mood set by the synths. It's the dreamiest rap song ever written. Elsewhere, Jamaican crooner Horace Andy gets a late-career revival by dressing up old standards ("One Love" and the quotes from his old songs on "Five Man Army") with newer, darker production. On "One Love," he miraculously rescues another clunky lyric by delivering it with as much straightforward, unironic conviction as possible, so that it sounds like a proud declaration of principle.

                        All the success of Blue Lines comes from its direct emotional appeal combined with its humble tone. The title track would never have worked as a blustering rap battle with boasting and threats. "Safe From Harm" threatens retaliation, but in context, that sounds more like a desperate bluff. Del Naja asserts his street smarts, but that just involves being "on my toes" rather than expressing aggression. The characters depicted in the songs are very ordinary. This somehow makes all the sentimental, heart-on-sleeve appeals to love and devotion sound stronger. This is a very uplifting album. Without patronizing the listener, it makes being a good person seem desirable and natural.

                        From a musical standpoint, I prefer Protection, which takes the same basic ideas (multiple contrasting vocalists, romantic atmosphere) and develops them with much better and more modern production. Parts of Blue Lines do sound dated (or maybe they were just never that great to begin with), mostly in the second half. But the first half, up to at least "Five Man Army," remains moving and engaging, like all the best soul albums.

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                        • Avg Rating:4.53 / 5
                        • Ratings:6618
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