Lucky links

June 22, 2017

Damon Albarn's tribute to Grenfell victims - BBC Radio 4

Damon Albarn pays a tribute to the victims of the Grenfell building burning which happened last week in London.


June 1, 2017

Cheap Clothing for Music Festivals

It's finally the British summer and it's time for music festivals like Glastonbury, Isle of Wright and Reading! With these festivals, everyone tries to look chic and unique. Celebrities of all kinds try hard to dress up and create fashion trends. It's almost essential to get the outfit right.

With Sammydress, you can get really cheap fashion that look stylish and brilliant at the same time. We here at BlurBalls have personally been sent a few items to review, and we're pleased to say that the quality is pretty impressive. Their coats and tops are brilliant.

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They have men's fashion too, and they're all around 10-30 pounds, which means that it's very affordable for anyone who already spent a lot on their music festival or gig tickets.



If Damon Albarn and Graham Coxon Were Cereal

Here's a little mid-week humour to get you through the week! Damon Albarn has often been called "Damon All Bran" by the fans, and apparently when he was a child he used to be called "Allbran" as a joke!


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May 29, 2017

Blur - 13 Live (The Depot)



One of the more emotional concerts of Blur's time. Enjoy!


May 16, 2017

Cheap Festival Clothing - Everything5pounds review

For you music lovers, concert fanatics and music-festival goers, nothing is more painful than deciding what to wear and where to buy it. In case you've been living under a rock for the past few years, a cool site called Everything5pounds has the cheapest and coolest clothing in Britain. They sell ex-high street brands (ex meaning that the high street brands like New Look, Top Shop and Dorothy Perkins etc can't sell off their stock) for 5 pounds each.

Yes, everything on their site is exactly 5 pounds! We've chosen a few items for our summer festival outfits, and they're all pretty high quality stuff. All of their stock comes from high street brands, so we got some from Forever 21, Ideal Shoes (sold on Amazon) and more.






Not only do they have mens and women's clothing, but they also sell accessories, bags and shoes. It's just perfect for budget concert goers like the folks here, as the styles are versatile and pretty impressive.

Check their shop out, if you ever need some quick, high quality clothing for your next Gorillaz or Blur concert!

Use the code "MICHELLEFIVE" for 5 pounds off!


May 4, 2017

5 Facts You Never Knew about Damon Albarn

The Blur frontman has always been a bit mysterious and aloof with his personal stories. But here are 5 fun facts that you probably never knew about the man himself.

1. After his breakup with Justine Frischmann in the late 1990s, there are rumours he dated Melanie C from Spice Girls (Sporty Spice) and Shaznay Lewis from All Saints. He has been seen with them together in house parties hosted by Albarn and Jamie Hewlett in their pad in London during his recovery days. He has always had an open relationship with Justine Frischmann and was caught kissing an Australian DJ back in the days.

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2. Blur and the gang used to play a "Punching Game" with each other, where they'd take it in turns to hit each other as hard as they can. Alex James recalls: “There was one tour in America that I had two black eyes,” James claimed. “One from Graham and one from Dave. And Damon broke my nose once. But you know… there was never any question we would split up. We were tighter than ever.” “Dave used to play this game called the Punching Game,” James continued. “We all took it in turns to punch each other. I remember playing it with the bass player from Dinosaur Jr… he was fucking massive. Taller than me. He lumped the shit out of everyone.”

3. Damon finally admitted to using heroin in his latest autobiographical album Everyday Robots (2015). The song "You and Me", referencing Justine Frischmann and his heroin use, found him admitting his 5-day-a-week regime. He has said that it's a relief that it can all become out in the open, since he was "mysterious" about his heroin usage during the 1990s.

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4. Damon has a really close relationship with his daughter Missy Albarn. He always writes songs for her and according to him, she "cries" with embarassment. He also admits that his collaborations in the latest Gorillaz album Humanz is based off Missy's choices and favorites. What a dad!

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5. Damon is a perpetual suitor when it comes to collaborations. How he managed to get Lou Reed, the Velvet Underground star on the old Gorillaz album was because he sent in hundreds of songs but were all rejected by Lou Reed. He said the secret to his success is to never give up on pestering the great musicians of his time.


April 28, 2017

Damon Albarn Is Best Friends with Noel Gallagher

There's something endearing about seeing Noel Gallagher and Damon Albarn on stage together. Not only that, but it appears that Damon Albarn has been publicly affectionate about Noel Gallagher, his one-time biggest enemy during the Britpop era.

In an interview by the Rolling Stone, he praised Noel Gallagher for being "funny" and cool.

So how did you get guitarist Noel Gallagher, your Britpop archnemesis in Oasis, to play on "We Got the Power"?
At one point, that track was Noel, me and [Blur's] Graham Coxon. It was the ultimate self-congratulatory Britpop moment. It was the victory lap, these geezers singing about all the power they had [laughs]. I went back and opted to doing it like you play something at the end of a film, as the credits roll. Jehnny Beth was necessary. The testosterone levels were off the fucking scale.
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At one point, Damon would have looked at Noel like this
How is it that you and Noel can get along so well now, after Oasis' vicious sniping at Blur in the Nineties?
Noel is not stupid. I love him for that. There was a point when they were set against us. And he had the advantage. He was from the working-class band. He was playing up to that and using it very successfully. I found it difficult to counter. What do you say? It's like when you get called "liberal elite" by right-wingers. The best I can say is "Call me liberal, but don't call me elite."
How easy is it to work with him now? You were both alpha males in your respective bands.
He's really musical. He's got a great tone to his voice. I love his guitar playing. And he's funny as shit. He's fucking brilliant company.
Good on you Damon!


April 26, 2017

Damon Albarn Hints At New Blur Album - 2017

Damon Albarn, the Blur frontman and recently re-launched Gorillaz singer, has hinted that he might release a new Blur album in the future. When asked about whether there will be a new Blur album, Damon was not his usual mysterious self. He told the press he “never said I’d never make another record” with the band. 

Damon Albarn is set to release a new album with Gorillaz called ‘Humanz’ this Friday (April 28th 2017) and has said that he will then work on a new record with The Good, The Bad & The Queen. Blur lasted released their latest surprise album ‘The Magic Whip’ in 2015.


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Asked by Rolling Stone where his focus on other projects leaves the Britpop band, Albarn said: “We’re all really good friends. And I feel like I’ve given many of my best years to Blur, so I don’t feel guilty in that sense. I’ve never said I’d never make another record. It’s all the same thing at the end of the day. It’s the nuances that make it different. It’s just more music, to add to the mountain of music there already is.”

Damon Albarn also spoke about Blur’s 2015 gig at Madison Square Garden in New York, saying: “We’d never done the Garden, and I felt bad that I’d done it before with Gorillaz [in 2010]. That was not fair. But in a way, Blur always felt that we terribly underachieved in America. It was hard to understand how bands like Radiohead and Coldplay are so successful here, and we weren’t. Thankfully, I have Gorillaz. Otherwise, I might be a terribly bitter, aging Britpop-er.”

Bitter as he is, he definitely made fans' day by hinting that there might, possibly be a new Blur album coming. Stay tuned for more!


April 23, 2017

Trump References Cut Out of Humanz- Damon Albarn 2017

Damon Albarn has revealed that he “edited out” any specific references to US President Donald Trump because he didn’t “want to give the most famous man on Earth any more fame.”
Humanz, the fifth album from the virtual band, is due out on 28 April and features guest artists including Popcaan, Kelela, Vince Staples and Danny Brown.
Speaking to Billboard, Albarn revealed that Trump’s ascension was “one of the sources of energy that we meditated on” for Humanz, “when it was like, ‘Ahh, that’s ridiculous, that could never happen’.” 
“There’s no references to [Trump] on the record – in fact, any time when anyone made any reference, I edited it out,” he said.
“I don’t want to give the most famous man on earth any more fame, particularly. He doesn’t need it!”
In the Billboard interview Albarn also explained how some of the collaborators he picked for the new Gorillaz album have his teenage daughter to thank.
His 17-year-old daughter, Missy is apparently a huge fan of Staples and Brown, and “some of the decisions for this record were fuelled by wanting to impress her still”.
Gorillaz are currently letting fans listen to their album in full via their app, at various locations around the world.
On 10 June, the band will host their own festival, Demon Dayz – named after their second record – which will take place in Margate’s very own Dreamland amusement park.
So far, only Gorillaz are on the line-up but expect additions in the near future. Tickets start at £60.00, with Priority Entry available for £70.00. 


April 21, 2017

Relive One of Blur's Greatest Gigs - Hyde Park 2012

For those of you who are feeling a little bit of Blur nostalgia, here's the full run of Blur's epic, and must we say, extremely passionate gig from Hyde Park 2012. Remember to watch in full screen at 480p!




1. Girls & Boys 00:00
2. London Loves 5:11
3. Tracy Jacks 8:43
4. Jubilee 13:10
5. Beetlebum 15:53
6. Coffee & TV 21:49 
7. Out of Time(with Khyam Allami) 27:24
8. Young & Lovely 32:15
9. Trimm Trabb 36:38
10. Caramel 42:07 
11. Sunday Sunday 47:19
12. Country House 50:47 
13. Parklife (with Phil Daniels) (& Harry Enfield) 55:20
14. Colin Zeal("Bugman" and "Oily Water) 59:12
15. Popscene 1:02:22
16. Advert 1:06:11
17. Song 2 1:10:41
18. No Distance Left to Run 1:13:34
19. Tender 1:17:29
20. This Is a Low 1:26:38 
Encore:
21. Sing 1:31:52
22. Under the Westway 1:38:14
23. Intermission 1:42:12
24. End of a Century 1:44:16
25. For Tomorrow 1:48:00 
26. The Universal 1:54:42


April 11, 2017

Brett Anderson Moans About Damon Albarn in New Memoir

It's expected in spring 2018 Suede frontman Brett Anderson has signed a deal to publish his memoir. The Britpop singer has sold his autobiography to publishers Little, Brown – who have described the writing as “as sharp as [Anderson’s] cheekbones”.

The Guardian reports that the book will be called Cold Black Mornings, while differing reports suggest that the title is in fact Coal Black Mornings. NME has asked Suede’s PR for clarification on the actual title.

Either way, the title is said to refer to the death of Anderson’s mother as well as the loss of his lover, Elastica‘s Justine Frischmann, to Britpop rival Damon Albarn.

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The book is set to look at Anderson’s upbringing, his “eccentric father” and the “choked Britain” of the early 1990s. It’s expected in spring 2018. “This is a memoir which is so very good we would have wanted to publish it, whoever the author,” says publisher Richard Beswick. “The fact that it is by the founder of an internationally successful band of course adds to the attraction.

But fundamentally it is a classic memoir, which can stand alongside books like This Boy’s Life and Alan Johnson’s memoirs, as well as music books such as those by Mark Oliver Everett and Tracey Thorn.”


April 7, 2017

New Gorillaz Song- Let Me Out - Out Now!

There's a brilliant new song released by Gorillaz today! It's probably the best single out so far, because it sounds like something from their 2nd album (which is arguably their best one). We spot an anti-Donald Trump-theme here.



Lyrics- Let Me Out



[Verse 1: Pusha T]

Mama Mavis, oh
Mama, they tried my patience
Obama is gone, who is left to save us?
So together we mourn, I'm praying for my neighbors

They say the devil's at work and Trump is calling favors

You say I'm dangerous, I speak for the nameless

I fly with the vultures, I be with them bangers
If change don't come, then the change won't come
If the bands make 'em dance, then the rain gon' come
(Woo!)



[Pre-Chorus: Mavis Staples]
Am I passin' into the light?
(Am I looking into mercy's eyes?) Look into your eyes
All the world is out of your hands
(Then ascending into the dark, let me out)
You got to die a little if you wanna live
Change come to pass
Change come to pass
You'd best be ready for it



[Chorus: 2-D]
Something I've begun to fear is about to change its form
Yeah, yeah, yeah, it's a shift in time
But I won't get tired at all



[Refrain: 2-D]
Let me out, let me out
Let me out, let me out



[Verse 2: Pusha T]
Look into my eyes, mama, tell me what you see
Tell me there's a chance for me to make it off the streets
Tell me that I won't die at the hands of the police
Promise me I won't outlive my nephew and my niece
Promise me my pastor isn't lyin' as he preach
Tell me that they'll listen if it's lessons that I teach
Tell me there's a heaven in the sky where there is peace

But until then, I keep my piece in arm's reach



[Pre-Chorus: Mavis Staples]
Am I passin' into the light?
(Am I looking into mercy's eyes?)
All the world is out of your hands
(Then ascending into the dark) Another night
You got to die a little if you wanna live
Change coming
You'd best be ready for it



[Chorus: 2-D]
Something I've begun to fear is about to change its form
Yeah, yeah, yeah, it's a shift in times
But I won't get tired at all



[Pre-Chorus: Mavis Staples]
Am I passin' into the light?
(Am I looking into mercy's eyes?)
All the world is out of your hands
(Then ascending into the dark) Another night
You got to die a little if you wanna live
Change is coming
You'd best be ready



[Outro: Mavis Staples]
Be ready, ready for it
Be ready, be ready
Oooh, oooh oooh
(Let me out)


March 26, 2017

Damon Albarn on the Inspiration behind Humanz



Excellent interview about the idea behind Gorillaz's Humanz- to be released in April 2017!


March 24, 2017

Gorillaz Album Humanz out April 28th 2017!

Damon Albarn is set to go on BBC Radio 1 later today to debut at least two new Gorillaz songs. Earlier today, as Pitchfork points out, four new Gorillaz popped up on TIDAL (they weren’t available to actually stream), though they’ve since been removed.

They are: “Ascension” (featuring Vince Staples), “We Got The Power” (featuring Savages’ Jehnny Beth), “Saturnz Barnz” (featuring Popcaan), and “Andromeda” (featuring D.R.A.M.). Those titles match up with the rumored tracklist that was leaked earlier this week.

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So we’ll be getting new Gorillaz music today, that’s for sure — just no telling how much! Albarn will appear on BBC Radio 1 at 3:30PM EST.

UPDATE: Gorillaz have updated their Instagram account with an announcement of the album’s title and release date: It’s called Humanz and will be out on 4/28. More details presumably to come!


March 13, 2017

Happy Birthday to Graham Coxon !

Happy Birthday to Graham Coxon! Congratulations for reaching the age of 48!

Here are some Graham photos to get you through the week.









March 10, 2017

Happy 2017 to Blur Fans!

May this year be a Blurry year!



March 9, 2017

Gorillaz Announce First Live Show of 2017 - June 10th

Gorillaz has finally announced that they're playing a live show - and the date is set for June 10th 2017.

Following the release of new single “Hallelujah Money” in January, Damon Albarn’s Gorillaz have announced their first live show in 7 years. It's called the Demon Dayz festival, which is set to take place at the Dreamland amusement park in Kent, England on June 10th 2017.

No other acts other than the animated hip-hop/electro-pop group have been announced yet.

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So far, only Gorillaz are on the line-up but expect additions in the near future. Tickets start at £60.00, with Priority Entry available for £70.00. If you don’t manage to get tickets, Red Bull will be streaming the entire thing via Redbull.TV.

To buy tickets, visit the official website of the Demon Dayz Festival HERE.


March 2, 2017

New Gorillaz Album is Finished - Release Date and more!

Damon Albarn recently announced that the new Gorillaz album is finished and that rehearsals are currently underway. The mega-successful cartoon band are currently gearing up to release their first full-length record since 2011’s ‘The Fall’, and last month released the first single – ‘Hallelujah Money’, featuring former Mercury Prize-winner Benjamin Clementine – from the as-yet-untitled album.

No official word has been spread about the possible release date. Jack Winstanley (@_JackWinstanley) posted a series of tweets after meeting the Blur frontman outside the gig venue where he works earlier this week, writing that Albarn had told him that the album is ‘finished’ and that tour preparations are underway.


With this in mind, perhaps a spectulative release date would be sometime within the next 2-3 months- perhaps in May or June. We should be expecting a single to be released earlier so this is great news for fans.

Stay tuned for more news.



February 27, 2017

Gorillaz Album Release Date- New Album To Be Released In July 2017

With Gorillaz releasing their newest single just before President Donald Trump's controversial inauguration, everyone is left wondering- when exactly will Gorillaz release their new album? Empty promises aside (Damon Albarn said it will be released in late 2016 in an interview), the big question is when exactly will the new bomb drop. It's going to happen, but it's just a matter of when. 

Their last album, ‘The Fall’ was released in 2010 – a mere nine months after their third album, the techno and funkly ‘Plastic Beach’. The new album's status is currently a secret- and the band members are not revealing anything conclusive. With that in mind here are some things you should know about their big comeback of 2017.
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In an interview in 2015, Damon Albarn said that he would start on the new album in 2015. He said “I’d love to just get back into that routine of being at home and coming to the studio five days a week.”

The Gorillaz has always been a spontaneous and unpredictable band. That is part of the fun. ‘Plastic Beach’ was recorded over a 17-months and their debut album took about a year, but their last album, ‘The Fall‘, was recorded during touring on an iPad. The band’s animator Jamie Hewlett claimed that “2016 is going to be Gorillaz all year.” He also said that Albarn is a workaholic and said, “I don’t think it will be long!

Recently, in an Instagram post by a fan who met Jamie, it was claimed that the new album is now slated for a 2017 release date, with Hewlett saying the album is “really fuckin special” but “can’t be rushed”.

Albarn gave a further update when speaking to BBC 6 Music in July and all confirmed a release date of 2017. “Later in the year we’ll be starting to get the whole Gorillaz thing together,” he said. Albarn also continued to say, “I’m loving it and it’s getting there. It should be ready fairly soon.”

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Damon Albarn- always up to "monkey business"
Following on from the release of ‘Hallelujah Money’, Gorillaz’ manager Michael Smith tweeted “Off we go then to London. Day 1 of @gorillaz prep” indicating that the great cog is turning, and we are indeed getting close to some monkey business.

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Smith leaked some news of the possible release date (follow him here)
As Michael Smith's telling tweet was made on February 7th, it seems that we ought to make a reasonable guess of the new Gorillaz release date. Tentatively, it seems that the new Gorillaz will be released sometime in mid to late of 2017, since the music director is still working on his drums and synchronisations.

Give or take, it seems that the new Gorillaz - which will no doubt be the hottest record of the year- should be released in around 4-5 months. That means that fans should expect an album to be available in full at around August 7th 2017. With that in mind, the wait will be perhaps a bit more easier to bear!


February 20, 2017

Britpop Fashion Spotlight- Damon Albarn's Shirts

Since it's London Fashion week, we're continuing our Britpop Fashion Week by teaching YOU all about what Damon Albarn and Graham Coxon wears. A lot of fans have asked us where to get Damon Albarn's coats or shirts, as they admire the way he dresses. We've all been there, wanting to get Damon's new look, or Graham's cool shoes, and this time, the focus is on the button up shirts.

Damon Albarn's style has evolved from a typical Brit/ Mod style in the early 1990s to a more mature style in recent years. He often is spotted with button-up shirts and shirts with collars, which give him a more mature look. An example is the time when Blur is touring for their album "13", for which Damon Albarn wrote when Blur was at one of its lowest points of its musical history.

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Even during as recent as 2016/ 2017, Damon Albarn is often spotted in a button-up shirt. They're usually blue or light in color, which is contrasted with a Harrington jacket, or something darker in colour. Damon Albarn's style has definitely evolved, but a button-up shirt is a wardrobe must for any fan who wants to imitate his style.

We want to feature Charles Wilson, a British label who stocks all sorts of wonderful Britpop shirts and apparel for men. What's great about them is that their clothing is exactly the sort of things that a Blur fan will have in their wardrobes. Their shirts are high quality, soft and fits well. They also offer free delivery to UK on all orders over £30. Extremely affordable and fashionable, they're definitely on our radar. They're definitely a hassel-free shop, and we really like the shirt we bought on their store.

Check out their store and hope these tips help.


February 11, 2017

Britpop Shoe Trends- footwear by Samuel Windsor

"I've always looked at shoes as being immensely beautiful things."
-Graham Coxon

Did you know that Graham Coxon is famous for being obsessed with shoes? The Blur guitarist is rumoured to have hundreds of British shoes in his London home, all stacked up in a closet.

Graham Coxon and Damon Albarn actually bonded over a pair of shoes. In an interview, Graham Coxon said: "I became a mod when I was 12, and so began my obsession with brogues. I was influenced by the Jam and the 2 Tone movement, and I'd wear the slimmest-cut school trousers I could find, and alter my blazer to three buttons instead of two.

"On 'civvies day', when you could wear what you wanted, there would be fights on the field between the mods, skinheads and casuals. As soon as it was break time, us mods had to run somewhere safe - there were only six of us. I met Damon at school: one of the first things he said to me was that his brogues were nicer than mine. He had leather soles and mine were rubber."

All the styles we feature below are available from the fabulously British menswear shop Samuel Windsor that you will need to dress like a Brit-popper. Samuel Windsor sells quintessential British footwear, as well as men's shirts, polo shirts and suits. They offer a wide range of tailored, affordable shoes that ever music fan needs to achieve his or her favourite musician's look. Best of all, they offer shoes at 30% the prices on the high street - that's really affordable!

Regardless, here are 3 top shoe styles that YOU need to look like a Britpop celebrity.

1. Leather Loafers


First on the list are leather loafers- you cannot go wrong with loafers because they go well with shorts or longer pants. This elegant, versatile shoe trend is a favourite for celebrities and musicians. For singers in the Britpop era, they are no exception. For a timeless Britpop look, the penny loafer will be a great choice. These versatile men's shoes look great with a formal suit or casual weekend wear.

To get a Britpop look, we bought a pair of loafers from Samuel Windsor. Their loafers are the quintessential slip on shoe, made from 100% real leather with strong construction. We are very impressed with the make and finish of the shoe- our order was shipped out fast and the quality of the Classic Penny Loafers we got is fantastic! With these shoes, anyone can look like Damon Albarn or Graham Coxon- at a very reasonable price! 

2. Brogues
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Another must-have for a Britpop look, Brogues are some of the most versatile shoes that any man can own. They are stylish, elegant and accords with a true Mod's style. Graham Coxon can be seen wearing leather brogues for some of Blur's most famous photo shoots and magazine shots, as well as in the 1990s interviews. Graham Coxon began wearing more brogues during the 2000s, evidently when he started his solo career. Brogues are also favourites of most of Britpop's legends- Liam Gallagher, Noel Gallagher, Brett Anderson and Jarvis Cocker. 

The Samuel Windsor range of leather brogues are available in a huge range of colours and materials. Their brogue designs are available as either black or brown brogues. These traditional, cool-looking leather shoes look good for work and formal occasions. 


3. Chelsea Boots
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Alex James may be the laid-back bassist that everyone thinks he is, but did you know that one of his most-seen styles are his brown Chelsea boots? Chelsea boots were made famous by The Beatles in the 1960s, but is one of Britpop's biggest styles. Chelsea boots vary in style, but the best ones such as those from Samuel Windsor are handmade from suede and leather. Alex James paired it with a pair of casual jeans for a quintessential casual, laid-back British style. 


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