Blur: The Ballad of Darren review – mature melancholia spiked with adventure

General Info on Blur

General Info / General Info on Blur 104 Views comments

Comparing it to a shock child, late-life Blur’s ninth album finds them on eloquent, emotional type, casting a wistful eye over previous glories whereas pushing forward musically

9 albums in, Blur don't owe anybody any bangers. They are a four-piece very much within the post-urgent stage of their career, reaping the rewards of their long musical life at a pair of ecstatically received Wembley Arena mega-gigs a number of weeks ago. These are males who've history of falling out (Damon Albarn and guitarist Graham Coxon, for two), falling again in together, spending time as a band because they need to, as a pleasurable sideshow to their primary gigs. Gorillaz, Albarn’s other spectacularly successful car, remain lively. In his spare time he’s writing another opera. Coxon, a longtime solo artist, has the Waeve, a wealthy collaboration together with his songwriter companion, Rose Elinor Dougall. Drummer Dave Rowntree lately released a respectable debut solo record. Alex James, bass, makes cheese and runs a pageant on his farm.

And yet, eight years on from their satisfying, if less pressing, final reunion album, The Magic Whip, Blur have produced a document that packs no little excitement. This swiftly wrought report, which James has in comparison with a shock baby (“we didn’t know we were pregnant, and we gave start in a grocery store automotive park”) finds late-life Blur on eloquent, emotional type. It’s an album that always seems again, whereas summoning textures and nuances that solely add to their toolkit.

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