The band played their biggest UK shows for four years at the Carling Weekend last week (Aug 23/24) – and Albarn admits he finds it moving to play all the old classics.
He said: “I have a lot of other things going on. But nothing can ever quite replace the feeling of playing live with Blur.
“Even though Graham (Coxon) is not there at the moment, it’s still an incredibly emotional thing. It’s so loaded – we have songs that go back over a decade and its been amazing this year playing the old stuff and seeing the reaction it evokes and emotion it evokes.”
But Albarn has plans to follow up his other band Gorillaz‘ hugely popular eponymous debut album – though he will approach the next record differently.
He revealed: “I recorded an album on a four-track in America when I had time in hotel rooms. In the past, I’ve gone out of my mind in hotel rooms watching TV or reading and tearing my hair out. So I thought I’d try and put some of those feelings that anyone who has been on tour knows and fears into something positive.
“I’ve done a whole album’s worth of material and what I like about it is that as the idea came out, I put it down on four-track and so I haven’t developed it. It’s an insight into how I write songs and the process in general into how music is put together.”
He added: “This set of recordings can go anywhere. Some of them are written with Gorillaz in mind. They’re just a bunch of songs really and a bunch of ideas. I’ll definitely be using some of the ideas for Gorillaz, but I want to put out a record showing how things start off.”
To hear more from Damon on Reading, Graham Coxon and his own solo album, get this week’s issue of NME, dated August 30, on sale now, priced £1.60.