Damon Albarn and co tell NME 'it just felt it was right again'

Blur are reforming to play live next year, NME can exclusively reveal.

The full line-up – Damon Albarn, Graham Coxon, Alex James and Dave Rowntree – will play their first gigs together since guitarist Coxon quit the band in 2002.

Speaking only to NME in a world exclusive joint interview, Albarn and Coxon explained that they had put their differences behind them and were looking forward to playing live in 2009.

“It just felt it was right again,” declared Albarn of Blur‘s return. “It somehow feels like there’s something for us to do again, we’re not completely useless or pointless, we’ve got a reason to exist.”

Coxon agreed, explaining the band were “making public what’s been going on a little bit privately. For the benefit of the fans and those interested we can say that something’s on the cards”.

What is on the cards is a headlining show in Hyde Park, London on Friday, July 3.

Tickets will go on sale at 9am (GMT) this Friday (December 12). To check the availability of Blur tickets and get all the latest listings, go to NME.COM/GIGS now, or call 0871 230 1094.

See Blur.co.uk for more information.

There are also rumours of further dates, including a possible appearance at the 2009 Glastonbury festival.

However, while the band refused to confirm any other shows, Albarn promised fans around the UK that the band would be announcing some more shows.

“We’ll do something in London because that seems sensible,” he said, “but we’re also playing in other parts of the country working up to there.”

You can watch a video of Blur talking about their reunion on NME.COM now.

For the full exclusive joint interview with Damon Albarn and Graham Coxon get this week’s issue of NME (cover pictured), on newsstands in London this afternoon, and available across the UK tomorrow (December 10).

In it the duo discuss how they buried the hatchet, why they decided to reconvene Blur, what songs they expect to play next year, and reveal more of their future plans.

Meanwhile, head to the NME Office Blog to nominate the songs you’d most like to hear at Blur‘s Hyde Park gig.

You can also visit NME.COM/PHOTOS for a special photo tribute to Blur.

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