Gorillaz fans have been long entranced with animated shorts featuring the band. Released periodically, these shorts show some of the antics and misadventures that the band gets into in-between albums, and provides insight into 2D, Murdoc, Russel, and Noodle that we would not otherwise get.
For those unfamiliar, Gorillaz are a British virtual band that was formed in 1998 by Damon Albarn and Jamie Hewlett. The band’s four members include lead vocalist 2D, bassist Murdoc Niccals, guitarist/keyboardist Noodle, and drummer Russel Hobbs and are completely fictionalized entities. Gorillaz sound is hard to classify, with alternative rock, Britpop, trip hop, hip hop, electronic, indie rock, dubstep, reggae, and even pop all being used to describe their genre.
After a six-year hiatus since the release of 2011’s The Fall, Gorillaz announced that their fifth studio album Humanz will be released on April 28th, 2017. Fans were ecstatic, especially as some tracks from the album were slowly released by the band to good response. However, Gorillaz had a few other surprises up their sleeve.
With the band being animated, fans have had to rely on the mini-shorts that have been released from time-to-time in order to really bond with Gorillaz. Unlike live-action bands, who can just hop on Snapchat or Instagram to show fans a snippet of their lives at any time, Gorillaz’s appearances take a lot more work to pull off.
Luckily, things are about to get a lot more fun. Hewlett has announced that a ten-episode television series is currently in production for Gorillaz. The show will feature all four members alongside their alter egos. Hewlett was coyly tight-lipped on revealing much more, but those details were enough to send fans into a frenzy.
In the past, Hewlett and Albarn were in talks with DreamWorks to put together a full-length feature film starring the band, but the project ultimately fell through.
“The film was too dark to spend a couple of hundred million dollars on,” revealed Hewlett. And in today’s world of instant, on-demand content, a multi-episode television show seems like a more successful avenue than a one-shot film.
Wait, There’s An App, Too?
As if the impending arrivals of Humanz and a television series weren’t enough, Gorillaz had one more trick up their sleeves. The band has launched an immersive “mixed reality app” for Apple and Android. The app (which can be found by simply searching “Gorillaz”) is available for download now, and it promises to give fans a glimpse inside the band’s universe and daily lives.
At a date currently unreleased, the app will also host what’s being called the “Humanz House Party”. The Humanz House Party will allow users to hear Humanz in full for the first time, and it is being billed as “the largest ever geo-specific listening experience bringing people together across 500 locations, from Tokyo to Santiago”.
Chances to see the band live are also coming, with Gorillaz’s own Demon Dayz Festival taking place on June 10th, 2017 in Margate. They will also be playing their first North American show in seven years, with the Festival d’été de Québec (Quebec City Summer Festival) in Quebec City, Canada on July 15th, 2017.
Remember to grab a copy of Humanz when it drops on April 28th, 2017. The album features collaborations with many artists, including Danny Brown, Grace Jones, De La Soul, Carly Simon, and Mavis Staples. Make sure to download the Gorillaz app as well, so that you’ll be sure to get an invite to the biggest House Party around!