Gorillaz
Plastic Beach


4.5
superb

Review

by sobelecta USER (9 Reviews)
March 6th, 2010 | 20 replies | 4,978 views


Release Date: 2010 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Album number three doesn't disappoint from the former Blur man.

3 of 3 thought this review was well written

Gorillaz have always a bit of an enigma. Originally a concept by Damon Albarn and Jamie Hewlett, with Del The Funkee Homosapien and Dan The Automator, over the years it has changed, bringing in Danger Mouse and multiple guest stars on 'Demon Days' (the bands second effort, after the self titled debut), till now, where it is mainly the work of Albarn and artist Hewlett. It also features some of Albarn's most expansive and ambitious work, and yet his most successful.

The idea of Gorillaz still being a side project is a bit silly now, third album in and millions of sales clocked in, but the fact that Albarn has this template seems to make him more ambitious and open to try out many new styles and ideas, which he couldn't do with, say, Blur. And let's not forget this is an animated band, which was the original concept behind the group.

However, unlike another animated band, The Archies, there is something a little more dark and visceral lying here. Let's look at the tracks. The album starts nice enough, with an orchestral intro that is destined to split people in two. Personally I'm indifferent but it's a nice start to the album. Then after what I think is personally a weaker song on the album courtesy of Snoop Dogg, Welcome To The Plastic Beach, the album picks up. The tunes come thick and fast, with White Flag, Superfast Jellyfish, and Empire Ants (Little Dragon is some sort of revelation) being some particular favourites.

Of course, one thing you'll notice about the album is the amount of collaborations on it. This is very much what 'Gorillaz' is about. It's like an episode of the sitcom 'Extras', where the guest stars are very much integral to the plot to the album, and while some may be more superfluous than others (Snoop Dogg and Mark E Smith, mainly) they all provide a different element to the album. Like Demon Days, it also makes some who could be considered has-been's regain their relevancy. Like Demon Days revitalised Shaun Ryder and De La Soul to record some of their best material in years, Plastic Beach turns Bobby Womack's emotional R&B/soul croon into one of the most soulful (and powerful) turns so far this decade in the wonderful first single 'Stylo'.

Of course, the album has some issues. Like the previous two, it tends to drag near the end, and it can be argued it's just a bit too long, and there isn't enough of Damon's voice on the album (or 2D). But these are minor squabbles in what's another success for Damon Albarn. It's a superb, eclectic album with big names and even bigger ideas. Damon Albarn said this was his most pop album he's ever made, and in a weird and wonderful way, it sort of is.

KEY TRACKS:
White Flag
Stylo
Superfast Jellyfish
Empire Ants
Some Kind of Nature
Broken



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user ratings (1205)
Chart.
3.5
great
other reviews of this album
1 of
  • Jasdevi087 (4)
    ...

    Peter Tabakis (4)
    Damon Albarn establishes himself as a pop auteur. Pop hits be damned, consistency rules he...

    TheSmoke (4.5)
    Plastic Beach is an very good album that nerver gets boring, it´s dreamy and it´s not co...

    clavichordwolf (2)
    Plastic Beach is nothing but candy-coated bullshit played for satire....

  • Plutonio (3)
    Plastic Beach is another album from hip-hop's eclectic superheroes; this time their eclect...

    DhA (4)
    Not that different from previous releases, although the lack of a killer single may make t...

    piero (4)
    Maybe Plastic Beach represents the beginning of the end of musical labeling, the start of ...

    Nick Butler EMERITUS (2.5)
    An identity crisis caught on record....

  • Deviant STAFF (4)
    Round 3 for Albarn and co. proves that third time is still indeed the charm....

    Raul Stanciu STAFF (3.5)
    After two brilliant efforts, Albarn & Co. are back with a bigger number, this time more s...


Comments:Add a Comment 
porch
March 6th 2010



8451 Comments


I think it's kind of annoying. Empire Ants is still my favorite track from this

SowingSeason
Staff Reviewer
March 6th 2010



15332 Comments


i need to listen to this till. this review gives me high hopes for it.

Digging: Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds - Abattoir Blues/The Lyre of Orpheus

HenchmanOfSanta
March 6th 2010



1852 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Superfast Jellyfish is the only track that I thought was great. I probably won't get this.

AggravatedYeti
March 6th 2010



7684 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

album is boss.

Minus The Flair
Emeritus
March 6th 2010



862 Comments


this really needs a better review

KritikalMotion
March 6th 2010



2261 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Superfast Jellyfish and Empire Ants are the best tracks.

AggravatedYeti
March 6th 2010



7684 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

this really needs a better review


hoping mine doesn't suck :D

Romulus
March 6th 2010



8411 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Really really want a staff review for this

ThePalestMexican
March 6th 2010



2816 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Rhinestone Eyes is the best to me.

CalebWuethrich
March 6th 2010



7 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

This wouldn't be a bad first draft of a review. Definitely needs some work on commas, etc. Also, going a little more in-depth with the songs would be nice.

Bulldog
March 6th 2010



3796 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0 | Sound Off

@Matt - you should review it.

thatoneguy726
March 6th 2010



1630 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I'm looking forward to this. A lot.

thebhoy
Emeritus
March 6th 2010



4459 Comments


Dear reviewer,

fix your run-on sentences and general grammar.

I should listen to this.

Eclectic
March 6th 2010



3302 Comments


I should listen to this.

Yes, yes you should, and then you should review it so we can have a good review of this.

The other two reviews weren't terrible per-say, they were just frustratingly mediocre. I think if we'd had a staff review and THEN these two, these wouldn't seem so bad, it's just that a lot of people are getting annoyed at the lack of quality material.

Urinetrouble
March 6th 2010



5754 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

some kind of nature is a wonderful track. my friend says to get loyu reed metal machine music. is t worth it

thebhoy
Emeritus
March 6th 2010



4459 Comments


Pretty sure we will have a staff review, though I can't remember who has dibs on it.

Deviant.
Staff Reviewer
March 6th 2010



30873 Comments


Was contemplating reviewing this myself

Digging: FaltyDL - In The Wild

Eclectic
March 6th 2010



3302 Comments


^That sounds good, I love your reviews

Romulus
March 6th 2010



8411 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Deviant/unnamed staff to the rescue

Bulldog
March 7th 2010



3796 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0 | Sound Off

moar leik tihs album.



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