The Blur bassist plans to pick up the phone and make contact with his old band mate...

BLUR bassist ALEX JAMES has said he plans to call estranged guitarist and former bandmember GRAHAM COXON.

Coxon has only played a small part in the recording of the new Blur album after he was told his services were no longer required. The three remaining members of Blur, Damon Albarn, Alex James and Dave Rowntree recently flew out to Morocco with producer Fatboy Slim to finish the record. Coxon did not travel, remaining in London where he is promoting his own solo album. Writing to fans on the band’s official website, www.blur.co.uk, James said that he is wondering where Coxon is, and that he’ll call him.

“I wonder where Graham is. Camden.” He said. “Maybe I’ll call him. It seems to have worked out for everybody. We’re all happy. Best record we’ve ever made.”

James said that sessions in Morocco have spawned a new song, that sounds like “a cross between Blur and Fatboy Slim”.

He continued: “Norman has a musical compass and he leads us places we haven’t been before. It’s good to get a fresh perspective on a few tracks and hear some new jokes.

“Norman isn’t scared of anything, oh except the thing with 10 legs that eats marbles that lives behind the studio, but he has a fearless perspective that people who know they are good all enjoy.

“We had a good time with a couple of songs that we hadn’t seen for ages, and a whole new one arrived. It sounds a bit like a cross between Blur and Fatboy Slim. “

NME.COM understands that the sessions in Africa are now drawing to a close, and the band will return to the UK in the coming weeks. The record, which was started in November last year, is due at the start of 2003.