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Additional Damon Albarn performance added to Edinburgh International Festival line-up on 24 August at 5pm, tickets on sale now.

Damon Albarn sits on chair while smiling off to the side.

Damon Albarn

© Linda Brownlee

We’re delighted to announce a new show from Damon Albarn as part of our 2021 contemporary music series. Following high demand for tickets for his first gig, the Blur and Gorillaz frontman will give two appearances at Edinburgh Park on Tuesday 24 August, with one at 5pm and a further show at 8.30pm.

Accompanied by his band and a string quartet, the Festival shows are a rare solo appearance for Damon Albarn, who presents tracks from across his songbook, including his most recent project The Nearer the Fountain, More Pure the Stream Flows. Originally intended as an orchestral piece inspired by the landscapes of Iceland, this last year has seen Albarn return to the music in lockdown and develop the work to 11 tracks which further explore themes of fragility, loss, emergence and rebirth. The result is a panoramic collection of songs with Albarn as storyteller. The album title is taken from a John Clare poem Love and Memory.

Other highlights of our contemporary music programme include soulful singer Laura Mvula with material from her new album Pink Noise and one of Neu! Reekie!’s distinctive cross-culture experiences headlined by Orange Juice front man and Scottish singer-songwriter royalty Edwyn Collins.    

The group pictured standing closely together, with some leaning on each others shoulders, all gazing into the camera.


© Danny Kasirye

Festival favourite Anna Meredith returns to Edinburgh to perform her second album FIBS, Nadine Shah performs her latest album The Kitchen Sink and Kathryn Joseph joins the bill with her haunting, beautiful balladry. Jazz artists include female-led music collective Kokoroko, producer-drummer Moses Boyd and London’s The Comet is Coming. 

Edinburgh-based Scottish/African choir Shona the Music Choirpresent original songs from Shona the Musical, bringing alive the vibrancy, splendour and joyous harmonies of Africa with an eclectic western twist.

Northumbrian musician Richard Dawson performs tracks from his concept albums Peasant and 2020, and multi-disciplinary artist and composer Erland Cooper performs music from his Orkney trilogy: Solan Goose, SuleSkerry and Hether Blether. The Unthanks bring their poetic mixture of folk music and storytelling, and indie folk sister trio The Staves play songs from their new album Good Woman.

Art rock four-piece black midi make an appearance, while fellow Londoners Black Country, New Road play tracks from their debut album For The First Time.  

Electronic artists on the line-up include Floating Points, combining his classically trained background with UK garage, spiritual jazz and broken-beat influences, and Canadian electronic artist Dan Snaith, AKA Caribou, with his latest LP Suddenly. 

International artists include Malian singer-songwriter, guitarist and acclaimed actress Fatoumata Diawara with material from her Wassoulou and Mali blues influenced back catalogue. Californian art-pop duo Tune-Yards perform material from their latest album sketchy.

The programme also includes West Lothian indie heroes The Snuts, whose debut album became the first by a Scottish band to top the Official Album chart in 14 years, and Glasgow-based four-piece Tide Lineswith their trademark anthemic folk rock.

Tickets for Damon Albarn’s additional performance on Tuesday 24 August, 5pm are on sale now. Browse the full Edinburgh Park line-up here.

Book now