Gorillaz - Demon Days

2010-01-15 | |

When the world seemed like there was no hope for music left, along came Damon Albarn, fresh from Blur, and he took some cartoon men and made them sing. And what they did was take the base of trip-hop, and tear it up to make their own music. Their debut album wasn't exactly trip-hop, as hip-hop over dub; and their second album was more hip-pop, but, buried under it all, under the paint and the facades was the last of the trip-hop albums: Demon Days.

What Gorillaz managed to do with this album is create music for the masses. It was still lyrical; it was still poetic; it still had that dark vibe taken from the trip-hop of the nineties. And yet, it was different. It was a unique slice of the mind of Damon Albarn. It was something that the kids growing up had never heard before. Aside from Gorillaz, there wasn't a large mainstream group putting out this kind of music.

I find Demon Days interesting. It blended the sounds of Blur, and more than just Albarn's vocals, with the electronic world. O Green World took on a distinctly Blur-esque sound, but yet moulded it to fit in with the Gorillaz persona. They took on hip-hop; they took on any challenge that came before them. It was inspiring.

Admittedly, for me, as a person who struggles with traditional hip-hop, I find this album hard to listen to. Songs like El Manana just don't 'do' it for me. I don't know what it is, but, I still can see the value in the songs I don't like. I suppose, in a way, it's the same as asking a fan of hip-hop to listen to Burzum without any prior warning - you're not always guaranteed a good answer. Ironically, when MF Doom gets involved on November Has Come, a true hip-hop tune, I loved it.

So, what are you getting here? Like I've said. It's not pureblood trip-hop. This is the progression. This is hip-pop in a sense; it's got the background, but, it's floated into lands unknown. A warning to all fellow travellers. Here be dragons, and rappers.

Overall: 7/10 - Ironically, it's the fact that it's not trip-hop enough that makes this progression lose marks. Compared to the others, it's just an album; but, it's an evolution away from the years of Portishead, and Massive Attack.

Top Track: All Alone

blog comments powered by Disqus