Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club. Because No News is Bad News.

CD Review: Gorillaz 

Plastic Beach (Virgin)

When Gorillaz debut more than 10 years ago, they seemed to be nothing more than a whimsical side project for Blur's Damon Albarn, who surrounded himself with a cast of "virtual musicians" (Albarn and the group are represented by cartoons). While the project continues to be anything but organic, the albums are carefully crafted and attract A-list artists. The band's third CD suggests the group has moved beyond the side-project stage. Half the fun is identifying the many guests. Is that the Fall's Mark E. Smith sneering his way through the electro-punk freakout "Glitter Freeze"? It sure is. And is that Snoop Dogg welcoming us to the "plastic beach" on the album's breezy title track? Yep. And could that be Rock Hall of Famer Bobby Womack and Mos Def contributing vocals to the groovy "Stylo"? Yes again. But the cameos never come off as frivolous or self-serving; Plastic Beach is surprisingly coherent. On the lazy, hazy "Rhinestone Eyes" and the snappy "Some Kind of Nature" (which finally gives Lou Reed the opportunity to rap), the hip-hop and electronic mix is seamlessly infectious. — Jeff Niesel

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Cleveland Scene. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Cleveland Scene, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at news@clevescene.com.

Cleveland Scene works for you, and your support is essential.

Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of Cleveland and beyond.

Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.

Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep Cleveland's true free press free.

Read the Digital Print Issue

September 23, 2020

View more issues

Most Popular

No recently-read stories.

Visit the archives…

Newsletters

Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.

Calendar

Staff Pick Events

  • Open Turntable Tuesday @ The Winchester

    • Tuesdays