The Now Now is the sixth studio album from the British alternative/trip-hop band Gorillaz.
Their newest album, while possibly having a few summer hits like “Sorcererz” and “Fireflies,” is lacking much of the energy Gorillaz fans have come to expect from this creatively bizarre band.
The first track on the album, “Humility” could definitely be considered the Gorillaz’s summer 2018 hit, with calming tones and an upbeat sound that contrasts with the melancholy undertones of most Gorillaz tracks.
While fans may be surprised by this shift in theme, it can easily be explained by the fact that band member Damon Albarn produced most of the album’s tracks, adding a more simplistic lyrical styling and stripped down sound that comes across as a little experimental. The only song on this album that really caught my attention was “Sorcererz”, produced by James Ford and Remi Kabaka. This song is fun and provides a flare of funk and energy, which most of the album is missing.
One thing I did notice as I went through the album was the continuous experience of having most of the songs fade into the background. Songs like “Hollywood” featuring Snoop Dogg (who was also featured on the spectacular track “Welcome to the World of The Plastic Beach” from the 2010 album) and “Idaho” fell short of the dark, high energy, storytelling reputation the band has created.
As a fan of Gorillaz, I was surprised by the albums toned down feel and plainness. The albums lacklustre ensemble of tracks made me reminisce of the more contagious songs from previous years like “Stylo” which featured Mos Def and Bobby Womack from Plastic Beach and “Feel Good Inc.” from Demon Days.
Humanz was the band’s last album released in 2017, which had dark undertones much like Demon Days and featured an onslaught of various artists including De La Soul, Vince Staples and Kali Uchis. Songs like “The Apprentice,” “Andromeda,” and “Halfway to the Halfway House,” gave fans everything they could ask for with unique lyrical stylings, star studded features, and strong funk-synth inspired beats.
While I was not blown away by the The Now Now album, I do recommend Gorillaz fans give it a listen. It doesn’t resemble previous albums, but for some, it might just be a refreshing change from the dark and twisted themes that most of us have come to enjoy from this band.
The Now Now album is available on iTunes or Spotify.