Electric Proms debut for Albarn's new band

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The Independent Culture

The musical chameleon Damon Albarn's latest incarnation, in a super-group with no name, will be unveiled as part of the BBC's Electric Proms.

The BBC hopes the five-day event in October will do for rock and pop music what the Proms have done for classical music.

Albarn will present a complete performance of a new album which he has produced with Paul Simonon, bassist of The Clash, Simon Tong of The Verve and Tony Allen, who worked with the African star Fela Kuti.

The album, entitled The Good, The Bad and The Queen, is yet another reinvention for Albarn in the wake of his work with Blur, the Gorillaz and with African musicians, notably in Mali.

It will be presented in its entirety live during the BBC Electric Proms, which will take place at the Roundhouse and other venues in Camden, north London, from 25 to 29 October.

But a spokeswoman for Albarn, who is on holiday, stressed it was a new project, not a new band. Albarn and his fellow musicians are "a collective" without a formal name, she said.

The album will not be released until next year. It is possible, however, that a single will be issued before Christmas.

The project grew out of work that Albarn began with Allen in 2002 in Nigeria, the home country of Fela Kuti, who died in 1997.

Albarn has described the project as "very English" and said it was the first time he had written about home since Blur's Park Life.

Another highlight of the Electric Proms, intended to become an annual event complementing the classical Proms, will be the premiere of The Who's new mini-rock opera, Wire & Glass.

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