Blur’s Alex James to host ‘Never Mind The Buzzcocks’ spin-off show

Bassist will front 'What A Load Of Buzzcocks' offshoot

Blur‘s Alex James will present a Never Mind The Buzzcocks spin-off show this spring.

The Britpop figure will front BBC2’s What A Load Of Buzzcocks, which will provide a retrospective look at the history of pop music over the last 17 years since the original programme’s debut in 1996, and will reexamine key events through old clips and episodes of Never Mind The Buzzcocks.

James said: “I’ve always been a big fan of the show and I’m looking forward to seeing some of the highlights from the past 17 years.” The show’s executive producer Dan Baldwin, meanwhile, added: “What a Load of Buzzcocks‘ comedy narrative will provide the perfect retrospective look at our ever changing world through the eyes of Britain’s funniest music quiz.

“This world of popular culture will be reflected, prodded and poked within classic archive from the show, telling its own story of major events that matter most to the viewer… like Take That splitting up… Michael Jackson marrying Lisa Marie Presley… and Mr Blobby getting to number one. It promises to be bloody funny.”

Never Mind The Buzzcocks currently stars Phill Jupitus and Noel Fielding as team captains and has previously been hosted by comedians including Mark Lamarr and Simon Amstell. What A Load Of Buzzcocks, meanwhile, has been commissioned for an eight-episode series.

Last week (May 9), it was revealed that James has made his directing debut with a short film called A Slice Of Life – scroll down to the bottom of the page and click to watch it. Discussing the film’s premise, James said: “Like everything else, it starts with an idea and as music is so much part of my life, it quickly became the focus of the short.

“I was in LA listening to the track on my headphones. The more I listened to it, the more it chimed with the sunshine and atmosphere of the city. So I decided to make a film about being carefree and happy, with a punchline that brings it all back to earth – the concept being life is short, but music endures. I really enjoyed the whole filmmaking process, it was very accessible and a lot of fun.”

Meanwhile, James could be recording a new Blur album with his bandmates after Damon Albarn made a surprise announcement onstage in Hong Kong on Monday (May 6). “So we have a week in Hong Kong, and we thought it would be a good time to try and record another record,” the frontman told the crowd.