Polaris, the lead track and accompanying live performance film from Damon Albarn’s forthcoming new album The Nearer The Fountain, More Pure The Stream Flows, is finally out now.
Polaris follows the earlier release of the haunting title track and, with its infectious choral melody, addresses the guiding star needed for lives blown off course as so many have been during this last year.
To accompany the song’s release, the first in a series of special, cinematic films entitled ‘Sublime Boulevards – Performance Films’ launches today on YouTube. Featuring a performance by Albarn with a full live band alongside a string quartet, captured in black and white, the film series is directed by Transgressive Records founder Toby L and will accompany a selection of the album’s material.
The Nearer The Fountain, More Pure The Stream Flows is the new studio album from Damon Albarn, out 12th November 2021 on Transgressive Records. Originally intended as an orchestral piece inspired by the landscapes of Iceland, 2020 saw Albarn return to the music in lockdown and develop the work to 11 tracks that further explore themes of fragility, loss, emergence and rebirth. The result is a panoramic collection of songs with Albarn as a storyteller. The album title is taken from a John Clare poem Love and Memory.
In a career of perpetual musical shifts and exploration, the record uncovers more ground, finding expansive orchestral arrangements nestling with intimate melodies, discordance brushing up against infectious majesty, all set to some of Albarn’s most arresting vocal performances to date. Much like the beauty and chaos of the natural world it soundtracks, The Nearer The Fountain, More Pure The Stream Flows vividly documents the emotional ebb and flow of the human condition, in all its extremes, serving as a soul-enriching document for our times.
Damon Albarn is a singer, songwriter, producer and composer whose eclectic musical style and observational lyrics have made him one of the UK’s most influential and consistently interesting musicians. He is also the founding member of Blur, Gorillaz and The Good, The Bad & The Queen, he is the recipient of six Brits, two Ivor Novello Awards and a Grammy Award.
The tracklisting for The Nearer The Fountain, More Pure The Stream Flows is:
The Nearer The Fountain, More Pure The Stream Flows
Royal Morning Blue
Darkness To Light
The Tower Of Montevideo
Giraffe Trumpet Sea
Alongside a digital release, there will be limited edition vinyl formats, plus CD and cassette. There will also be a deluxe version of the album, taking the form of a casebound book with additional photography, original scanned lyrics and artwork from Damon, alongside a white vinyl version of the album, a high-quality digital file and a bonus 7” featuring an exclusive song from the recording sessions.
Albarn debuted a set of songs from the album as part of the Live At Worthy Farm event in Glastonbury last month. And this summer, accompanied by a band and string section, Albarn will perform a number of UK festival shows to play tracks from across his songbook, including the new album, on 12th and 13th July at Manchester International Festival and Edinburgh International Festival on 24th August.
Pictures by Eddie U, EIF, NME & GQ