British rocker Damon Albarn has opened up about his heroin use, insisting taking the drug aided his songwriting and was "incredibly productive" for his career.
The Blur frontman has previously confessed to taking the heavily addictive narcotic over a period of time during his 1990s heyday, and he has detailed his use of the drug for the first time in an interview with rock magazine Q.
He recalls how he would take it five days a week but ensure he always stayed clean at weekends in a bid to regulate his intake, and he is adamant it was a mainly positive experience.
Albarn says, "You know I hate talking about this because of my daughter, my family. But, for me, it was incredibly creative. It freed me up. If you're talking about odysseys, then that was definitely an odyssey. A combination of that and playing really simple, beautiful, repetitive s**t in Africa changed me completely as a musician. I found a sense of rhythm. I somehow managed to break out of something with my voice.
"I can only say (heroin) was incredibly productive for me. Hand on heart. But it does turn you into a very isolated person and ultimately anything that you are truly dependent on is not good."
The Parklife hitmaker says he eventually weaned himself off the drug and used only painkillers to ease the withdrawal symptoms, adding, "I wouldn't recommend that and I was incredibly lucky, but I did manage it. I mean, five days on and two days off is kind of mad, isn't it? It was mad... I can move forward now without all the nudge nudge, wink wink innuendo I've had in the background for years. It was a long time ago."