Damon Albarn does not know how to talk about Blur, and that’s because he doesn’t need to. He can present pure speculation about the band’s future as fact or just casually rattle off a dismissive comment about the band being over forever and later call it insincere, because he knows his band is still fresh in the hearts of so many. But I think it’s more complicated than Albarn just being a cock. Sometimes it can feel like his capricious treatment of Blur’s future is by association a frosty regard for his fans, but he’s earned the right to change his mind, and he’s got more integrity to get the band back together just because the fans want him to. And when thousands and thousands of these dedicated fans are relishing every word of your newest song, you want to make sure that anything subsequent doesn’t let them down.
Anyway, “Under The Westway,” performed at the 2012 Olympic Closing ceremonies. In a word: triumph. It’s an almost ironic twist on months of Albarn’s speculation and walkouts on rehearsals for a new album, given how close the band sound to the height of their powers. The entire performance will be available on DVD December 3rd, and I will be buying it.