Search The Line of Best Fit
Search The Line of Best Fit

“The future of Blur? Each one of us has a different answer” says Alex James at documentary launch

30 November 2015, 11:29 | Written by Robbie Wojciechowski

When Blur announced they were making a new record, no-one quite expected it would be a record about Hong Kong, let alone one recorded there within the space of five days. New World Towers is the film that follows the album, The Magic Whip - a 90-minute homage to one of Britain’s biggest bands.

Using the very natural beauty of Hong Kong as its backdrop, New World Towers is a journey through the making of an album – a story about how a cancelled show turned into the tinderbox that led to the band producing their first studio album as a four-piece for 16 years.

Through a series of personal interviews, the band take us on a journey through the last few years of their lives – from dealing with the anxiety of reforming to the everyday trivialities that have made their friendships meaningful once again.

“It was the right place in the world, in the right frame of mind,” says Alex, in reference to the five days of sessions that led to the album forming in Hong Kong.

The film also uncovers much about Graham and Damon’s candid relationship. Not only do we get insight into the inner-workings of the band, there’s a jovial candid nature to the film that sees the band members all express their doubts (and then utter surprise) at Graham Coxon’s work on the post-production of The Magic Whip.

The film features live material from their gig at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre, as well as live material from their Hyde Park gig earlier this summer, alongside hundreds of shots that help place The Magic Whip within the context of its creation in Hong Kong. Director Sam Wrench has worked meticulously to offer an account that is both beautiful and very personal to the band.

During a Q&A about the film at London's BFI, Alex and Graham seemed in good nature as they talked about everything from sound issues at the Hyde Park gigs over the last few years, to what it felt like to session again as a band in a studio.

Narrowly avoiding questions about any future – “I think if you ask anyone in Blur about what the future of Blur is, each one of us is going to have a different answer,” said Alex, the band seem tight-lipped about any future plans. But with this film, 27 tour dates out the way and a new album, everyone in the band seems poised that the project still has life in it yet.

  • New World Towers will be screened in cinemas across the country, for one night only on 2nd December
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