The Gorillaz are back. 2D, Noodle, Russell and Murdoc are returning with their first new album in six years. Entitled Humanz, the album was announced via the virtual band’s website. New portraits of the bands members porting retro looks (shades and trilby hats) also accompanied the announcement. The album will be released on April 28, 2017.
The news may come as a pleasant surprise for fans who have been eagerly awaiting for new material. But there’s more, for London-based Gorillaz fans: Pre-ordering the album enters you into a raffle for tickets to the first live Humanz performance, which will be at “a secret London location” on Friday, March 24.
Can you say, feels good?
The mind behind the Gorillaz, Damon Albarn, gave a sneak peek at the album on MistaJam’s BBC Radio 1 Talk Show.
One of the tracks, Andromeda, starts off with a quick dance beat and some of the electronic synths that we’ve come to expect from the Gorillaz sound. The voice of Albarn, as 2D, softly croons over the track, giving the whole sound the vibe of an old-school disco beat.
The other track, Saturnz Barz, features a similar sound, though with a distinctively stronger bass line. Guest artist Popcaan kicks off the track with a reggae rap, and 2D’s synthesized voice joins in shortly after. There’s also something noticeably darker and more ominous about this track.
Twelve more songs will be included in Humanz, rounding out a 14-track album.
The Gorillaz are the creation of Damon Albarn, who spent a few years conceptualizing the ban with artist Jamie Hewlett. They came out with their first self-titled album in 2001, which included their breakout track, Clint Eastwood. The music video of the song introduced the four members of the virtual band.
It also featured Del The Funky Homosapien as a spirit of rap who could possess the quiet Russell. It would set the standard for future guest artists. Those guest artists would become something of a staple for the Gorillaz.
This would become evident with their second album Demon Days. Released in 2005, the album featured the hit Feel Good, Inc., featuring De La Soul.
Gorillaz released their third album Plastic Beach in 2010. They would follow this up with The Fall in 2011, before going on a lengthy hiatus.