Listen: Damon Albarn is Being Contemplative Again on New Single ‘The Nearer The Fountain, More Pure The Stream Flows’
When your author last interviewed Damon Albarn in the spring of 2014, the Blur reunion was already five years past, and his first solo record, the piercingly ruminative (as in: How might technology be insidiously overwhelming our existence, and how can we resist it doing so?) Everyday Robots had just landed on the digital shelves. In his usual thoughtful manner, he astutely observed…
“Our memories change, and they change with who you are. Our organic nature is becoming fused to a digital nature, and it’s unclear yet what the implications of that are.”
Now seven years on, he is back with a deeply contemplative new single, the title of which – ‘The Nearer The Fountain, More Pure The Stream Flows’ – begs all manner of interpretation. But it actually lyrically returns to his favored themes of memory and the passing of time (still bursting with youthful exhilaration, Damon actually turned 53 this past March). And from the opening verse, it’s clear he is still attempting to make peace with the fact that it all seems to pass by us so fleetingly.
“To think of life that did laugh on your face
In the beautiful past, left so desolate now
When youth seemed immortal, so sweet it did weave
Heaven’s halo around you”
Sonically, the somber but evocative atmospherics evince the ongoing influence of his London neighbor and sometime collaborator, one Brian Eno.
The track is actually taken from his upcoming album of the same sprawling name, which will be released by Transgressive this November 12. It promises an ever deeper journey into the Damon Albarn that so eagerly now wishes to share with us what he’s learned, even if the lessons may someday need to be unlearned, or perhaps just contradicted.
“I have been on my own dark journey while making this record,” he reveals, “and it led me to believe that a pure source might still exist.”
We can’t wait, then, to hear the full report.