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Blur studio shot 2023

Blur announce their first album in eight years

18 May 2023, 17:53 | Written by Tyler Damara Kelly

Blur have announced, The Ballad of Darren, their first studio album in eight years, alongside new single, "The Narcissist".

Produced by James Ford and recorded at Studio 13, in 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.

Of the new release, Damon Albarn said: “This is an aftershock record, reflection and comment on where we find ourselves now", whilst Graham Coxon adds that "the older and madder we get, it becomes more essential that we what we play is loaded with the right emotion and intention."

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," with Dave Rowntree echoing the sentiment: “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.”

Today’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 tomorrow, marking the start of a short run of warm-up performances which will see the blur visit Eastbourne Winter Gardens, The Halls Wolverhampton, and O2 City Hall Newcastle.


  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 Heights

The Ballad of Darren arrives 21 July via Parlophone.

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