In an age of sequels following sequels, prequels preceding prequels, rehashes of 'Just OK' TV shows, and reboots of classic movies, it’s hard not to feel a little deflated and concerned that our best days might be behind us. Have we become so set in our nostalgic ways -- reaching for creature comforts, feeling content to swipe away the hours? Perhaps, but lucky for us, it seems that the Gorillaz didn't get the memo. Discontent with the way things are, they set their sights on another goal announcing their newest album, Humanz. Coming out guns blazing, the avant-garde duo once again redefined the music genre as they have done so many times in the past.
To start, Gorillaz unveiled an immersive 360 virtual reality video for their new track 'Saturnz Barz' (Spirit House) last March and it's already smashed YouTube's record for the biggest debut of a VR video. At the time of writing this article, it's received just under 9 million views to go with over 35 million views for the non-VR version. I particularly enjoyed seeing a slice of pizza spitting bars.
去年三月，Gorillaz 为新单曲‘Saturnz Barz’ (Spirit House) 公开了一支沉浸式360度虚拟现实视频，成功打破了YouTube上各种VR首秀的最高播放记录。截止到写这篇文章时，它的浏览量已接近900万，同时伴随超过3500万非VR版本的浏览。
Keeping busy across all platforms, they also released a self-titled app (Android & iOS), which allows users to delve into the band's haunt where they can engage in conversations with band members. Given the narrative involved, users can expect the app to evolve to incorporate future storylines. Fancy a chinwag with Murdoc Niccals?
在这支VR视频席卷各大媒体平台后，他们又发布了一款同名app（Android & iOS），以便用户深入挖掘乐队的灵魂。在这里，普通用户也可以与乐队成员深入对话，甚至参与未来的故事发展。想想能与Murdoc Niccals 一起聊天，是不是挺兴奋？
Following the immediate success of their 'Saturnz Barz (Spirit House)' VR track, Gorillaz and Sonos teamed up to create Spirit Houses (IRL) across various locations around the globe. A press release they put out describes the houses as "immersive, high fidelity" happenings in "raw spaces" that will feature exclusive music, custom artwork, physical installations, and digital projections. These pop up's appeared in New York, Berlin and Amsterdam.
随着Saturnz Barz (Spirit House) 一夜成名，Gorillaz与知名家庭智能无线音响品牌Sonos达成合作，将在全球不同位置打造Spirit Houses。据他们发表的一份新闻稿描述，为保证Spirit Houses 的“沉浸式、高保真”体验，所有原始空间都将配备独家音乐、定制艺术品、物理装置和数字投影。这些Spirit House将不定时不定期出现在纽约、柏林和阿姆斯特丹等地。
Also as part of the build up to the release of their album, Damon Albarn and Jamie Hewlett released a highly mesmeric teaser in the form of a multimedia video story on Twitter & Instagram. They introduced "The Book of Noodle," a story about the character's journey after the band's 2010 album Plastic Beach. We won't spoil it so do check out the link at the end of the article.
作为专辑发布准备工作的一部分，Damon Albarn 和 Jamie Hewlett 以多媒体视频故事的形式在Twitter和Instagram上发布了一支具有高度催眠作用的先导片。他们介绍了“The Book of Noodle ”，一个关于乐队2010张Plastic Beach专辑背后的人物历程。我们当然不会私藏它，详情请点击文末超链接查看。
To top it all off, Jamie Hewlett, illustrator extraordinaire recently announced in an interview with Q Magazine that he's currently working on a 10-episode TV series revolving around the band.
更妙的是，杰出的插画家Jamie Hewlett在近期接受Q Magazine采访时表示，他正在筹备一个以Gorillaz乐队为主题的10集电视连续剧。
What I like most about this project, is the fact the Gorillaz rarely shy away from the unexplored and potential risks of doing something different. For many companies/people, it's easy to fall into a trap of the safe and easy tried and tested, but that's where creativity loses out and complacency takes over. It makes sense that a virtual band would branch out into AR/VR and given the marketing, illustration and musical background they possess, they once again are setting the best example. This project clearly shows a glimpse of where the music and entertainment industry is headed over the next few years and I can happily report that when the Gorillaz decide to put out a new album, they don't just release a few tracks. They change the status quo and for that, we are forever grateful! Be sure to check out their work and see if it inspires you to shake things up.
Saturnz Barz (Spirit House) VR track:
The Book Of Noodle:
Gorillaz TV Show:
Spirit House Shanghai: