Blur Announce Surprise New Album Ahead Of Live Dates

The Damon Albarn-fronted Britpop innovators Blur will release their first album in 8 years, titled The Ballad of Darren and comprising 10 new tracks, on 21st July on Parlophone.

Blur (Reuben Bastienne-Lewis)

Blur (Reuben Bastienne-Lewis)

Produced by James Ford and recorded at Studio 13, London and Devon, The Ballad of Darren is the band’s ninth studio album, their first since the chart-topping The Magic Whip in 2015, with artwork featuring an image by British photographer Martin Parr.

Blur (Kevin Westenberg)

Blur (Kevin Westenberg)
Blur (Kevin Westenberg)

Of the new L.P. Albarn says: “This is an aftershock record, reflection and comment on where we find ourselves now.” Guitarist and vocalist Graham Coxon adds “The older and madder we get, it becomes more essential that what we play is loaded with the right emotion and intention. Sometimes just a riff doesn’t do the job.”

Check out new tune The Narcissist below:

Bass man Alex James says: “For any long term relationship to last with any meaning you have to be able to surprise each other somehow and somehow we all continue to do that.” while sticksman Dave Rowntree added “It always feels very natural to make music together. With every record we do, the process reveals something new and we develop as a band. We don’t take that for granted.”

This week’s surprise announcement comes ahead of the band’s return to the place where it all began – Colchester, Essex – for their first ever performance at local landmark Colchester Arts Centre tonight, marking the start of a short run of warm-up performances which will see the blur visit Eastbourne Winter Gardens on 21st May, The Halls Wolverhampton on 26th May and O2 City Hall Newcastle on 28th May.

Blur (Kevin Westenberg)

Blur (Kevin Westenberg)
Blur (Kevin Westenberg)

These warm-up dates are kicking off a summer of highly-anticipated live shows which will bring Alex James, Damon Albarn, Graham Coxon and Dave Rowntree together again to perform their iconic and much-loved songs across Europe over the coming months. The band’s first ever show at London’s Wembley Stadium on Saturday 8th July sold out in minutes – with a second Wembley Stadium show added for Sunday 9th July.

UK LIVE DATES

MAY
19th – Arts Centre, Colchester
21st – Winter Gardens, Eastbourne
26th – The Halls, Wolverhampton
28th – O2 City Hall, Newcastle

JULY
8th – Wembley Stadium
9th – Wembley Stadium

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