Graham Coxon is reportedly set to rejoin his former bandmates to record what will "probably" be the last Blur album.
A source told The Sun once Damon Albarn's tour with The Good The Bad And The Queen ends in February, Blur will head into the studio.
The mysterious source of this information left the window open for the group's future, should things go well in the studio, noting that it will be "one step at a time" and only that the reunion "may not be a long-term project".
What cleared the way for the reunion, they said, was Coxon's "realization" that the rest of Blur have "grown up" (i.e. "sobered up", or at least that getting "smashed every night" is no longer their lifestyle; it's left unclear from the article.)
While Coxon has enjoyed a successful solo career since leaving the group in 2002, questions and rumors of a reunion have swirled around him nonetheless.
Coxon was dismissive of such rumors nearly a year ago, calling the group "very much a boyish thing." He said, "I'm over it... It was 10 years ago that Blur were at their height so I'm quite a different person now."
However, he also said he and Albarn weren't talking to each-other. In early November, Blur's Alex James said it was "looking hopeful" that Coxon would return to the band. He told a Gigwise reporter, "we're all friends now."
Later that month Coxon echoed those words, while acknowledging that he was closer to James. He said James was the only member of Blur he'd spoken to recently, and said, "Alex will always be my friend. I guess they all will be in some way, but it's somewhat strange."
At that time, he hadn't "been approached" about a reunion, but sounded considerably more open to the idea. "I guess I still mull around and think about it every now and then."
Is the difference between "no" and "mulling" Alex James? He may be a peacemaker.
Albarn recently announced that he now "get[s] on famously" with his Battle Of Britpop rival Liam Gallagher.
However, he said he doesn't talk to Noel Gallagher, explaining, "Britpop would be over and heaven forbid that we'd ever admit we'd all grown up! Britpop still reigns supreme over Britain as a musical force and will do until Blur and Oasis split."
A-ha! If he doesn't want to admit he's grown up, perhaps Albarn is The Sun's source, cleverly saying the group has "grown up", something no one would think he would say! (Or maybe he was kidding and it sheds no light on who the source may be.) Either way, his not wanting Blur to break up hopefully bodes well for the longterm prospects of the group.
Intriguingly, the stage might be set for another Britpop battle, with Oasis planning their next studio album for 2008.
Blur - Tender (Live Wembley Arena) (from Best of Blur)