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Crack Island review


Last week the virtual band Gorillaz released their 8th album “Cracker Island,” but is it any good? 

A virtual band consists of animated characters that are played by real people. The advantage is that the artists can keep relative anonymity behind their stage presence, and it leaves more room for work and people behind the scenes. Gorillaz, for example, consists of eight real-life members, while on stage and in music videos, it only has four.

I have always liked the idea of a virtual band, and I have enjoyed this group since I was younger when they were releasing songs that topped the charts like “Feel Good Inc.” 

I didn’t listen to them by album until recently when they released “plastic beach.” 

About half of the songs in the album have a fun upbeat dancy feel, but the other half of the album has the slower dissociative sound that the band has recently leaned into with their last few albums.

I do not think that this is a bad thing, though, because I like the more melancholy Gorillaz sound.

The album is named after its first song “Cracker Island.” This song was released a few months early to create hype for the album and it is a very good, poppy song. 

The second song, “Oil”, features Stevie Nicks. It is another very bright-sounding pop song. I like how well Nicks and voice actor Damon Albarn’s voices work together. 

The third song is “The Tired Influencer.” It is a good fusion between the Gorillaz’s slower trippy sound and their upbeat sound. It got very stuck in my head after I listened to it a few times.

Next is “Silent Running.” It has about the same feel as the last song and got just as stuck in my head. It also features Adeleye Omotayo, who was part of the choir back when the band made the album “humanz.

After “Silent Running” is “New Gold.” It is a very cool-sounding song but it is not very memorable unless you listen to the slower version of it at the end of the deluxe version of the album. It features the artists Bootie Brown and Tame Impala.

The sixth song is “Baby Queen.” It has strange lyrics but sounds good. The song is not very rhythmically memorable though.

Seventh is “Tarantula.” This song is awesome. On first listen it’s intro was very jarring with fun synthesizer noises, but as the song continued, it worked very well into the melody and chorus.

Next is “Tormenta” featuring Bad Bunny. I had never heard of him before this song, but his voice is great and works very well in the song. Despite not knowing enough Spanish to understand the lyrics without translation, this is one of my favorites on the album.

The penultimate song of the album is “Skinny Ape.” I don’t think that there’s anything special to this song, but I like it because it sounds like the Gorillaz. The chorus near the end where they repeat “skinny little ape” is super catchy though.

In my opinion “Cracker Island” leaves the best song for last with “Possession Island.” It is a melancholy piano/acoustic guitar-based song that slowly gets more energy as it adds more instruments and becomes more rhythmically complicated. Right before the end, it also has a magnificent uplifting trumpet solo.

I would rate this album four Lopers out of five.

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