Blur tease what to expect from Wembley reunion gigs

24 May 2023, 09:00

Blur tease what to expect from Wembley gigs

The Britpop legends have talked about the setlist and preparations for their duo of Wembley Stadium gigs this summer.

Listen to this article

Loading audio...

Blur have talked about their upcoming Wembley Stadium shows and discussed their approach to the set.

The Britpop legends are set to play pair of dates at the iconic venue on Saturday 8th and Sunday 9th July and they've given us some insight on what to expect.

Asked if they will play tracks from their forthcoming record, The Ballad of Darren, frontman Damon Albarn joked to Radio X’s Dan O’Connell: “Who says we’re not just playing the new album?”

“Forwards and backwards” added drummer Dave Rowntree.

Albarn went on: “We didn’t start rehearsing till three weeks ago, which is when we released the album and that’s the extraordinary thing about this time round.

“I mean, I’m used to putting out records in recent years where I have to wait a year before it actually gets released and this one we finished two weeks ago”.

Bassist Alex James joked: “Personally I’ve been waiting since 2015!”

Albarn continued “We finished it two weeks ago and then we’re like, ‘Well we better start rehearsing as we’re playing a gig in two weeks'.”

“We’ve been rehearsing solidly since then. It’s a nice way to do it, because you’re not thinking about anything other than just making music, so when we got into rehearsal we were very kind of comfortable together again, ‘cause it’s been a while.”

Alex James added: “So we chucked a couple of the new ones in there and actually I’ve been enjoying playing those the most.”

Blur perform at Colchester Art Centre in 2023
Blur perform at Colchester Art Centre in 2023. Picture: Phoebe Fox

READ MORE: Blur tease "honest" performance ahead of reunion gigs: "We sound really good"

Asked if they find themselves falling in love with different songs on the setlist as time goes on, Coxon revealed: "Yeah, definitely. There's always songs that I love to play and quite often they're the songs that are melancholic now that I'm a bit older and my finger might hurt a bit more.

"So things like Badhead I'm quite a bit fond of. But it's interesting getting older. It's just interesting making music and feeling like you're older and you've changed."

He added: “I like playing those older ones more respectfully as possible in a way, because a lot of our live shows were more exuberant and noisier than they were on record."

Despite this, Damon Albarn assures fans that through they are older they are sounding "really good".

“We sound good. We sound really good," he teased. "It’s back to basics. We sound how we should sound without any sort of confectionery around the sides. It’s honest.”

Listen back to Blur's interview on Dan O'Connell's Evening Show

READ MORE: Damon Albarn “can guarantee” Oasis are going to reform

Blur, who played intimate gigs last week in Colchester and Eastbourne, also announced their first new material in eight years with their ninth studio album The Ballad of Darren.

From the record, which follows 2015's The Magic Whip, comes new single The Narcissist, which is out now.

Blur - The Narcissist (Official Visualiser)

Speaking of their lead track, Albarn told Radio X: “I think the whole nature of being in a band… especially talking about yourself, having photographs taken... that’s all about yourself.

“Obviously there are deep practitioners of narcissism in the entertainment world, but it also applies to people like Putin, you know? It’s one of those kind of troubling aspects of modern life. There’s definitely mediations on modernity in the record for sure.”

Pre-order The Ballad of Darren here.

See the tracklisting for Blur's The Ballad of Darren:

1. The Ballad

2. St Charles Square

3. Barbaric

4. Russian Strings

5. The Everglades (For Leonard)

6. The Narcissist

7. Goodbye Albert

8. Far Away Island

9. Avalon

10. The Height

READ MORE: Blur announce new album The Ballad of Darren and new single The Narcissist