The band look to the future following the imminent release of their 'Best Of'...

Blur plan to return to the studio at Christmas to continue work on their forthcoming album, and bassist ALEX JAMES has described new track ‘BLACK BOOK’ as “sonically the best thing we’ve done”.

Speaking in the current issue of Melody Maker, out tomorrow nationwide (October 18), James said that the sessions for ‘Black Book’ and forthcoming single ‘Music Is My Radar’ had rejuvenated the band. He said: “I’d kinda forgotten what I did. There was no Blur for six months, and I was just tarting around with orchestras and things, it was great.”

When asked when the band plan to record again, James responded “around Christmas…that’s a good time for recording, around Christmas”.

Guitarist Graham Coxon added: “I think we’ll sit around and go through our ideas. Start recording an album for a few months, then have some more of a rest. I’m enjoying this rest. But I’d like to do some Blur next year.”

Elsewhere, James spoke about the band’s progress so far. He said: “We had to record a new song for ‘Greatest Hits’ contractually, so we went in and did ‘Black Book’, which we all think, sonically, is the best thing we’ve done. But it was ten minutes long. Then we went in to do the B-side and, just because we weren’t feeling pressure at all, that (‘Music Is My Radar’) came out. The A&R man came down and burst into tears.”

‘Music Is My Radar’ was released on Monday (October 16) through Food. The album, ‘Blur: The Best Of’ follows on October 30.