Interview | Blur: “It’s always a pleasure to go back to the origins”

It must have been quite a pain paying for the ticket (not cheap at all), organizing the weekend, looking for accommodation (if you live outside of Madrid, which is the case) and that festival (Primavera Voice) Cancellation based on the recommendation of the competent authorities in view of the possible precipitation, when in fact in Glastonbury You should always wear a raincoat and catioskas. But this is that Spain is not the United Kingdom.

blur He was one of the big names at Primavera Sound 2023, both in the Barcelona version and in the capital, the first, by the way, to be staged in Madrid. Also, Blur has not released an album since The magic whip (Parlophone, 2015), eight years ago. Therefore, the hype It was doubly so, more if possible after listening narcissistalready the subject of this new installment titled Darren’s song (Parlophone, 2023), and its premiere is scheduled for July 21.

EL PERIÓDICO DE ESPAÑA WAS Able to Speak With Damon Albarn And Graham Cookson In Madrid after the confidential hearing Darren’s song. But before that… uncertainty and stress. First of all, given the chaos caused by the aforementioned cancellation, Blur and Primavera Sound announced on the same morning of Thursday, July 8, that the British band would be performing at La Riviera at 8pm. Obviously, the sites sold out in a matter of minutes. In fact, while the reporters were listening to Albarn and Coxon, they were more interested in their mobile phones to buy a ticket, which was a complex and complicated matter at the time.

Not much can be said about the album yet. What Only Is Known: Ten songs (and two more for ed deluxe), produced by James Ford and cover with photo Martin Parr– It was, if we look at it well, foreboding. who attended Displays By Blur at Primavera Sound in Barcelona they were able to hear, as well narcissistAnd Saint Charles Squareanother novelty Darren’s song. But—coffee lovers, take note—Blur’s generosity didn’t stop there, because the set menu contained luminous (They only played it six times, the first being on September 6, 1999 at the Electric Dance Hall in London), country house (Since November 29, 2015, she has not appeared in live photos) or break (which was not scheduled). Lots of candy.

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With these expectations, the questions, not few, of Damon Albarn and Graham Coxon are numbered in the dozens, but you know, reader, that good old Albarn is rather complicated in meetings with the press, as he made you see and know in Madrid, in the offices of Warner, where he was lazy to answer, and dismissed The microphone is off his mouth, causing his parliaments to be heard only by animals capable of perceiving very low frequencies. Albarn replied, “The only thing Graham and I had when we started working on this record was saxophone, guitar, synthesizer, and piano.” “Devotion to music is something that requires you to spend your whole life with it. So you know, In the sense that there was no meeting. The idea of ​​playing some old songs again seemed plausible to all of us.. I don’t know… It sounds so grand, but the truth is, it’s a new stage idea. Or maybe not. I mean, if you can’t make music your whole life, you’ll never be able to grow up. If you call this a meeting, it can sound festive.

It’s Graham Coxon’s turn, who becomes more “awake” than his partner but less cheerful (he brings the microphone closer to his pocket every time he hears the cellphone ring). He laughs it all off: “In our lives, as always, we do what we do, This is the reason we are on this planet. I think asking if this is a reunion and all these kinds of ideas is silly, when that’s really what we do: music. It’s true that we don’t always do it together, but it’s music, and it’s always a pleasure to go back to the origins, that prompted us to live in the world of music & rdquor ;. Note from the record company: No questions can be asked about it GorillazDon’t be afraid to walk away from it Darren’s song. But how do you keep this long-awaited record a secret? Albarn’s response is a laugh and a sympathetic snort. “Very easily: We don’t tell anyone we’re writing…. And in the studio?” We disappear…and don’t come out until we’re done with it…. Next question?

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A few years ago, my butler had the privilege of interviewing veteran photographer Martin Barr, author of, as noted above, the cover of Darren’s song. “The world is changing all the time and everywhere. It’s interesting, because if you take pictures that capture the time we live in and compare them to pictures from before, you’ll see that they are very different, thirty years ago, for example, they reflected other kinds of things.” This statement is carried into the middle of Blur, with the addition of a few facts: What do your songs reflect now compared to thirty-five years ago? This question is not trivial, because if Barr had photographed a man bathing in a swimming pool under a stormy sky, the cover of his first work is a blur, emptiness (Food/Parlophone, 1991), Wore in cover Portrait of a woman wearing a bathing cap while a swimming pool is overlooked in the background. Will Blur close a cycle? Lots of data about Albarn, who snorts and throws his head back. narcissistBecause of her lyrics and her voice, it seems like a reflection of “Loud” Blur Trip’s special.

Damon Albarn smiles, who in the end isn’t a bad guy: “Uh…. yeah. That kind of close relationship between the narcissist and the artist, you know, it’s special because These days it’s impossible to be an artist and not be a reluctant narcissist motivated by a need for social media To publish his image and message. But don’t believe, there is a positive message in all of this & rdquor; “Both covers are closer than they seem,” Cocoon adds with a laugh, because early on he would be a bit pedantic in his answer: “On both covers there is Water as the protagonist and these people in it. They were like the borders of the islands where we live. We’re surrounded by water, man! We are inside. This has a lot of power. As you can see in the photo, the pool has a controlled portion of water, but often the wild waters of the sea wash away all sorts of things.”

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Coxon inevitably asks if this album cover doesn’t look pre-worried now that it’s raining on this dry land called Spain: “I usually associate Spain with a pool climate, but actually it’s like a sea climate at this moment. More laughs. Unfortunately.” Weather conditions, good face.

The event ends. Albarn and Coxon leave the room first, then the others. Damon stands up every time he sees a framed record at Warners fairs. He laughs with Coxon again, but it’s time to furnish the sails and get into the van that will take them to La Riviera for a sound check, a place of worship (for there is no other) where Blur fans will go to amuse themselves with umbrella in hand.

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