For those unfamiliar, “Gorillaz” is a band that features the fictional cartoon characters 2D, Noodle, Russel Hobbs, and Murdoc Niccals.
The idea of using comic-book pseudonyms as a sort of "mask" for contributing artists came to Damon Albarn of Britpop band Blur and the British cartoonist Jamie Hewlett back in 1998. While watching MTV, the two say they were struck by the lack of substance in what they were seeing.
Gorillaz appeared to be a side-project wrapped in a marketing gimmick but Gorillaz turned out to be far removed from the classic brit-pop mold and I do think it was the first successful commercial and artistic fusion of so many different styles and cultures.
Fusing together sounds from the worlds of pop, rock, hip hop, dub and electronica, most of their futuristics sounds can be attributed to Gorillaz's constantly expanding group of collaborators.
Humanz is a fascinating and frequently brilliant album. It displays a sonic ambition, an open-mindedness and a melodic gift that puts so much modern pop,taking inspirations from 80’s/mid 70’s groove pop, disco, and R&B.
Humanz provides a cohesive, full experience, moving from radio-friendly tracks into spoken word and other experimental forms and is loads of fun to listen to.
Still, Albarn's musical touch and wit are felt throughout.
From the thriller-infused electro-funk of "momentz" to the bubbly grooves of "Andromeda" and "we got the power," there's something for everyone, and often in the same song.
Whilst I love their music, what's kept me continually interested in the Gorillaz is the characters that make up the band and the art styles of the music videos.
Gorillaz have always been good at multi-media engagement, through art, music videos, and more mysterious things like a website that worked like a flash game, and these things all really spoke to me as a young nerd.
Written by : Simona