Gorillaz is returning with its third album, dubbed “Plastic Beach,” next year, and with it a new crop of collaborators, including Lou Reed, Mos Def, Snoop Dogg and, well, the Bee Gees’ Barry Gibb.
Damon Albarn, former frontman of Blur and mastermind of the cartoon band, also confirmed to The Guardian that the Syrian National Orchestra, Bobby Womack and a flock of seagulls (the animals, not the band) will also be guests on the set, which is the follow-up to 2001’s self-titled record and 2003’s “Demon Days.”
No word yet on if any collaborators from “Demon Days” — like Debbie Harry, De La Soul or Dennis Hopper — will return, but, as always, it appears Albarn wants to keep it diverse.
“Urban music has become mainstream and traditional ideas of pop have become so saccharine and so simple … you know, er, manipulated by a very small group of people, mentioning no names, that it is very difficult to enjoy,” he said. “That is why I do Gorillaz records, and it’s why I’m making this one the most pop record I’ve ever made in many ways, but with all my experience to try and at least present something that has got depth.”
Albarn also made clear that Blur have no intention to reunite permanently, to tour or write a new record, even after a series of reunion shows in the U.K. this summer. “For me, it was so nice to do that again and to know that I had left on a good note with Graham, Alex and Dave, but I didn’t come off stage thinking, ‘I’m a rock star!’ at all.”