Blur set to play new version of ‘Country House’ live

Comeback band also give details of warm-up shows

Blur have revealed they will reinvent their most notorious song at their forthcoming reunion shows – if they can get it right in time.

Front man Damon Albarn wants to put together a radical new version of the group’s first UK Number One single ‘Country House’ – which famously beat Oasis‘Roll With It’ to the top slot in August 1995.

However, the group rarely played it live in guitarist Graham Coxon‘s latter years with the band, and admitted their obvious reluctance to perform it when playing all their singles on a one-off tour in 1999. The group did not play it all live when promoting the Coxon-less ‘Think Tank’ LP in 2003.

Now, with Coxon back to play shows with Blur for the first time in nine years, they plan to give the song a radical overhaul.

Albarn told BBC Newsbeat: “I am determined to do a version of ‘Country House’ that works. Graham playing a really nice picky, folky thing and my friend David Coulter playing the whole tune on saw, and letting the audience sing.

“If there was any song that I really wanted to exercise and be reborn, it would be that one, because, you know, it was such a stupid moment.”

Albarn also confirmed Blur are set to perform a set of smaller warm-up gigs before the big shows, with the first likely to be in Albarn and Coxon‘s home town of Colchester in Essex.

He said of the much-anticipated reunion: “It’s gonna be really beautiful, hopefully, fingers crossed. It’s gonna be either really beautiful or the most horrific mistake ever!”

The already-announced dates include headline slots at Glastonbury (June 28), Oxegen (July 11) and T In The Park (July 12) festivals.

Blur‘s own shows are as follows:

Manchester MEN Arena (June 26)
London Hyde Park (July 2, 3)

To check the availability of Blur tickets and get all the latest listings, go to NME.COM/GIGS now, or call 0871 230 1094.

BBC Newsbeat