Design of the Week | Humanz
In her debut Radio Waves post, Regan presents this week's "Design of the Week," featuring the new Gorillaz album:
Gorillaz just put out their first studio album in seven years, and it's called Humanz. Humanz by Gorillaz. Are they human, or are they ape? Are we human, or are we dancer? I don't know the answer to either of those questions, but what I do know is that this. album. is. knock-your-socks-off good.
The four members of this virtual band—Murdoch, 2-D, Russel, and Noodle—are at their post-apocalyptic, techno-futurist best, and are collaborating with an A+ lineup of other artists. Prolific rappers Danny Brown and Vince Staples, the underexposed but brilliant funk/R&B/jazz singer/producer Peven Everett, singer of the classic, "You're So Vain," Carly Simon, Kelela, and others all make shining appearances.
Gorillaz has always been sweet. There are two creators, Damon Albarn (lead singer of Blur, who have the late-90s classic "Song 2" and an expansive body of work, and comic book artist Jamie Hewlett. Then there are the four virtual members who I mentioned before: 2-D on lead vocals and keyboards, Murdoch on bass guitar, Russel on guitar and keyboards, and Noodle on guitar and keyboards.
Most of their videos show the band members navigating a virtual space-world, hanging out on Plastic Beach, and riding around in trucks that look like salvaged army vehicles. They fight Spacemonkeyz and do other cool things. While their videos usually take place in a virtual world, never before have viewers themselves been able to actively participate in the virtual world of the video—not until now, with the release of "Saturnz Barz (Spirit House) 360" video. Click and drag to navigate the screen, and contemplate our humanity's virtual future. Is it rael? Or is it all monkey business?