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Like It's Your Last
by Devil Sold His Soul
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Blur
March 2003

Blurís new album is called 'Think Tank'. Recorded over the duration of last year in London and Morocco, itís their first album since guitarist Graham Coxon was controversially ousted from the band, and the first since Damon Albarnís mammoth solo success with his Gorillaz project.

The record, the band's seventh, is due to be released on May 5 through Parlophone and features 13 brand new tracks. The album's tracklisting runs: 'Ambulance' 'Out Of Time' 'Crazy Beat' 'Good Song' 'On The Way To The Club' 'Brothers And Sisters' 'Caravan' 'We've Got A File On You' 'Moroccan Peoples Revolutionary Bowls Club' 'Sweet Song' 'Jets' 'Gene By Gene' 'Battery In Your Leg' The album's first single will be 'Out Of Time', due out April 14 (originally April 21 but was brought forward one week), with b-sides and formats to be announced very shortly. The album is already available to pre-order from a number of online stores including CDWOW.

The majority of the album has been produced by Ben Hillier (Elbow), with Norman Cook taking responsibility for just two of the more upbeat tracks - including likely second single, 'Crazy Beat'. Dotmusic report that a secret track appears at the end of the new album, entitled 'My White Noise' but this doesn't appear on the official Blur press release.


Bio's

DAMON ALBARN
London
23-03-1968
Vocals, Piano, Organ, Synthasizers

Damon Albarn was born on 23 of March 1968. He was born in the East End of London to Hazel and Keith. He has one sister called Jessica. He first lived in Leyton-Stone, East London and thenin 1987, after living six months in Turkey, his family moved to Colchester. In 1979, he attended Stanway Comprehensive School in Stanway where he was called names and everyone called him gay. Damon first met Graham here when Damon noticed Graham wearing "crap brogues". He learnt piano and the violin. Damon then enroled in Colchester Sixth Form College in North Hill where he failed A-Level music, got an E in History and a D in English. At 16, he went to East 15, a drama school but soon gave up to persue a career in music so he moved to London in 1987 where he performed as one half of a synth duo called "Two's A Crowd" with new friend Sam Vamplew. He then got a full time job in a studio and attended Goldsmith's College on a part time course.

He recorded some demos at the Beat Factory studio, owned by Graeme Holdaway. This partnership didn't last too long and Damon went solo again. Damon was employed as a tea-boy at this recording studio but was also allowed free time in the studio. In 1988, Damon played a solo gig at the Colchester Arts Centre, Church Walk in Colchester. He played on acoustic guitar in front of Graham, Dave and 13 others. He went for a drink with Dave after the gig where Dave told him to give him a ring if he needed a drummer. Circus soon formed with Damon, Dave on drums and a guitarist, but on the eve of their first recording session, the guitarist left to become a full-time photographer. Damon turned to Graham who he met earlier in Stanway School. They were both at Goldsmiths by now, Graham joined and they became inseperable friends. They both worked on early solo songs by Damon such as "Beautiful Lady".

Seymour's first gig was at East Anglia Railway Museum in Chappel, Colchester in 1988. It was attended by 100 friends, family and college art students from Goldsmiths. They then did gigs around London in various pubs and other small venues., including the Powerhaus in Islington, North London where Andy Ross and David Balfe of Food Records first saw them live. They also played in clubs like The Falcon and Blow Up. The name "Seymour" refers to a story by J.D. Salinger where a newly-wed called Seymour Glass kills himself whilst on his honeymoon. This name was suggested by Damon's friend Paul Hodgson.

When he was 19, he made a demo tape with Graham Coxon on the Saxophone on some of the songs after Food Records showed interest in the band, the songs were "One Day", "Jane",and "Elizabeth". They were known as Seymour but had to change their name to Blur to be signed by Food Records by Andy Ross and David Balfe in March 1990. They signed for to Food £3000. He was going out with Justine Frishmann of Elastica after first meeting in 1992, but have recently split up. The split inspired Damon for the album "13" where Damon opened up his heart in songs such as "No Distance Left To Run" and "Tender".

Damon is a keen follower of football and has even scored at Wembley in 1995 at a charity game. His favourite football team is Chelsea and has also played charity games at Chelsea's home ground, Stamford Bridge. He also wrote music for Channel 5's coverage of Chelsea in European football. Damon begun filming for the British film "Face" on 20/11/96 starring Robert Carlisle from Trainspotting. Damon starred as a getaway driver in the gang of bank robbers, called Jason, in his first film appearance but ended up dead by the end of the film.

Damon also starred in a drama originally written for the Beatles by the controversial playwright, Joe Orton, called "Up Against It". Damon played one of the lead characters in the radio play which featured plenty of swearing, sex and scandal. It was broadcasted on Radio 3 in September 1997. In the February 1998, Damon wrote a track to be England's theme song for the World Cup 98 but the FA didn't pick it and the song was never released. Also in Febraury, Damon headed a delegation to Parliament in protest at the introduction of tuition fees for students where he teamed up with Labour Left-winger Ken Livingstone and more than 30 student unions to challenge the Government over its plans to abolish grants.

Apart from acting in a film, Damon is recently getting interested in writing music for movies. He's worked with Michael Nyman for "Ravenous" and is also set to work with ex-Sugercube Einar on the soundtrack for "Reykjavik 101". He may also write the score for the film adaptation of Alex Garlands "The Beach". While in Blur, Damon has done many collaborations. He played on tracks on Terry Hall's album, one track was called "Chasing A Rainbow". He also collaborated with Tricky but those sessions were never released. He's also worked with Michael Nyman on the Noel Coward tribute album on a track called "London Pride". He also worked with Matt Sharp on a Gary Numan tribute album where he played keyboards and sang on "We Have A Technical". He has also released one solo song called "Closet Romantic" on the "Trainspotting" soundtrack.

He was involved in some remixing too. He mixed a Cornelius track called "Star Fruit Surf Rider". Both Damon and Graham remixed a Massive Attack song called "Angel" and both worked on a song called "101%" using 1 minute of music from Thurston Moore. All the remixes were released. Damon has recently achieved one of his life-long ambitions - to be on US cult cartoon The Simpsons, where abit of Song 2 was used for the Superbowl episode entitled "Sunday Cruddy Sunday". At present, Damon is with artist girlfriend Suzi Winstanley and has fathered their first child, the baby is called Missy, suggested by Damon.


GRAHAM COXON
Germany
12-03-1969
Electric and Acoustic guitars, Backing vocals, Banjo, Saxophone, Woodwind

Graham Coxon was born on 12 of March 1969 in Rinteln at a military hospital near Hanover, Germany. After spending his first 5 years on the German military base, he moved to Derby to live with his grandfather and then to Colchester when he was 8 years old. Here is where he met Damon Albarn at Stanway school. Graham's Dad was also a saxophone player called Bob who taught jazz to the soldiers in Germany and his mother's name is Pauline. His father was a saxaphonist in the Worchester & Sherwood Foresters too. He also has one sister who is a nurse called Hayley.

His first instrument was the fife, a small military flute. He began to learn the guitar at 12 after a short period on the saxophone and the drums. He played sax and passed musc exams up to Grade 5. He taught himself to play guitar on his sister's acoustic guitar. He played guitar just so he could play "Aunties & Uncles", "News Of The World", and "Liza Radley" by The Jam. Also at 12, he played drums for local bands around Colchester. Graham was also a "protest vegetarian" for a short time but gave it up after becoming anaemic which forced him to spend a week in Severalls Hospital, Highwoods in Colchester in 1986. Graham also went to Colchester Sixth Form College with Damon but only lasted a year after becomming the common-room clown. He then went to North Essex School Of Art And Design, Sheepen Road in Colchester, he was 17 at this time. He studied for a two year General Art and Design Diploma. At the same time, Graham worked part-time in Sainsburys and also played in Dave Rowntree's band "Idle Vice".

Graham then went to study at Goldsmith's College in London on a Fine Arts Degree where he met Alex James who was studying French while Graham studied art. He first saw Alex on the first day as he got dropped off by his mum, they became good friends and drinking partners. Through Graham, Alex got to know Damon and soon he joined Dave, Graham and Damon in Circus which soon evolved into Seymour. Graham seems to be injury prone at times, he became anaemic while a vegetarian, during the US Leisure tour, he was very ill with a bleeding ulcer and in 1998 he was spectacularly hit by a cab.

Graham was once a heavy drinker but has eased up in recent years. He has tried unsuccessfully to kick the booze on numerous occassions. Graham has played sax on only one Blur album song, "Parklife". Graham is a shy character but in recent years, his confidence has grown. Two solo songs have appeared on the past two albums, "You're So Great" and "Coffee & TV" appeared on "Blur" and "13" respectively. He also released a solo album called "The Sky Is Too High" in August 1998 through his newly set up record label, Transcopic. The album featured 11 songs, all written and performed by Graham, he even plays some piano on one track. The artwork is also Graham's own drawings. The sleeves for "Tender", "13", and "Coffee & TV" are all by Graham too. He has had some of his private collection on show in art galleries in New York, Warsaw and Paris. He also did some art for Idlewild's first single "Film For The Future" where he did some artwork for the super-imposed images.

On January 21 1997, Warchild launched a new campaign to help children in Bosnia where musicians were asked to create works of art and then they would be exhibited and to help Graham made an eight foot high lightning bolt in humour of Pink Floyd's Syd Barrett. Graham is also a lover of jazz, and especially likes listening to Ornette Coleman and Roland Kirk while also played sax himself in his spare time. He also has a Swedish girlfriend called Anna. Like Damon, Graham has also fathered his first child called Pepper. Graham's favourite guitar is his 1952 Tele Reissue and is also a fan of Les Pauls and American acoustic guitars.


ALEX JAMES
Bornemouth
21-11-1968
Bass guitar

Alex James was born on 21 of November 1968 in Bournemouth, England. He was christened Stephan Alex James. Alex's mother is a volunteer worker and his father was a salesman, he also has one sister called Deborah. When he was 11, he bought his first piano. He has 13 "O" Levels and 3 "A" Levels. He was in a band called "Age Of Consent" and "Mr. Pang's Bang Bangs", which he named after his landlord. He met Graham at Goldsmith's College in London while he was studying French. He joined up with Damon, Graham and Dave in Circus just before they changed their name to Seymour. He didn't get on too well with Damon at first, he thought his songs were shit and he "was a wanker" but he put up with Damon as he had the keys to the recording studio called The Beat Factory in Euston.

At the height of the Britpop was in 1995, Alex was fond of wearing his "Quoasis" T-shirt down to Groucho's (where he is a member) or any other trendy bars he frequented.
In the summer of 1996, Alex released his first solo project with some friends, they were known as "Me Me Me" and released a single called "Hanging Around". He also played bass on Marianne Faithfull's album in early 1997. In 1998, he joined up with more friends like Keith Allen and Damien Hirst to form "Fat Les" and their debut single was the alternative theme for England's World Cup 98 campaign, called "Vindaloo", it made number 2 in the charts. They follow this up with a Christmas tune called "Naughty Christmas" (Goblin In The Office), but this failed to make an impact. Alex is also interested in flying and like Dave, he has a helicopter's and commercial licences.

Alex is also now engaged to fiancée Justine.

DAVE ROWNTREE
Colchester
08-05-1963
Drums and Samples

Dave Rowntree is the oldest member in Blur. He was born on 8 of May 1963 in Colchester in Essex, England. He is also the only member in the band who is married. He's married to Paola. His mother is a pianist with the London Ochestra and his Dad was a sound engineer for the Beatles at the BBC, and he has one sister called Sarah. He attended Gilberd School in Colchester. When he was young, he died his hair an even stronger colour of ginger as he wanted to stand out. His first instrument was the bagpipes, but then he concentrated on playing the drums. Dave also has a Higher National Degree in Computer Science from Woolwich. He was also a computer programmer for Colchester Council before joining Seymour. Dave even once received jazz lessons from Graham's dad.

In 1988, Dave first saw Damon play a solo gig at Colchester Arts Centre where he offered his services to Damon after the gig. Before he joined Blur, he was in a band, which was a jazz-punk trio called Idle Vice with Graham. He was also in "The Curious Band", "Hazel Dean" and "Carpets Eaters From Hell". Dave was also a protest vegetarian for a while but suffered the same fate as Graham. While playing in Seymour, he always wore pyjama bottoms. After signing up with Food Records, as well as changing their name to Blur, Dave also had to agree never to wear his pyjama bottoms at gigs. Dave loves flying, he has licences for helicopters and commercial 737's and has his own plane. He is also very interested in computer animation and has done some small things for MTV and other TV channels.

Dave and Alex are also organising publicity for Beagle 2. The European Space Agency is launching Mars Express in 2003 and the lander is called Beagle 2. Because of the pair's interest in science and the universe, they both got interested in the project. They could be writting theme music for the project.



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