Listened to the new Gorillaz album The Now Now for the first time & wrote down a bunch of the thoughts I had while listening to it. Not an in depth review, just a collection of initial reactions to hearing the music for the first time

If it’s Friday the 29th of June in yr timezone you should be able to find The Now Now wherever you normally find music, streaming or for sale etc


Humility

Not really a first impression but still as into this (if not more into it) as I was when they dropped this & ‘Lake Zurich’ & I found myself excited for new Gorillaz music all over again. That build up part around 2:30 is smooth as hell. A nice & breezy opening to the album


Tranz

Ooh yeah. This is nice, pretty into the dark danciness of it


Hollywood (feat. Snoop Dogg & Jamie Principle)

Not a fan of the intro vocals but once the song gets underway I can get into it. Okay yeah not into any part with Jamie Principle’s vocals. Can we get a version that’s just Albarn & Snoop? Am I a bad person for wanting that? Idk. This part at the end with Jamie Principle just remind me of Pond at their worst & that sucks because I really like all the other parts of the song. Oh well


Kansas

This song is kinda dirge-y & maybe it’s because I’m still soured by ‘Hollywood’ but it’s also not doing it for me


Sorcererz

Immediately more into this than I was into ‘Kansas’ tho. That synth line floating through is infectious & groovy & everything I was hoping that this album would be. The break part around a minute in is done really well too. More like this please


Idaho

Wasn’t sure about this one at first but the way it blooms outward & becomes more sweeping & grand around a minute & a half in is nice & provided a much needed moment of reassurance. I’ve never been to Idaho but I feel like if I ever do go this is what I’ll be thinking of the entire time I’m there


Lake Zurich

Already heard this so many times but it still rules. Just a nice as fuck, groovy, light, fun song. Maybe it’s unfair to compare all the other songs on here to this one but I kinda can’t help it, there’s a magnetism to this tune that got me genuinely excited for this album & meant I went into this thing with a preconceived notion of what I was in for. That’s my bad & has me wondering if I’d be more into the other tracks on here if I didn’t have such a defined image of what I thought this was going to be. Definitely not ‘Hollywood’ but ‘Kansas’? Definitely got me wondering


Magic City

I like this. The spaciness of it, the bass, the way the whole thing floats along seemingly effortlessly. This part just after the two minute mark with the descending synth run is tight, & exactly the sort of thing I was hoping for from this album. It helps balance out the slower moments


Fire Flies

I like this lurching, submerged sounding beat. The more this song goes on the more I like it, it feels almost like a cousin to the sound that Arctic Monkeys went for on Tranquility Base Hotel + Casino, another lounge song from an imagined future. This is pretty & glittering & has a beautifully melancholic undercurrent anchoring it all & I like it


One Percent

Ah man, this was over way before I thought it would be. I liked it a lot though, felt similar to ‘Kansas’ but a bit more effective


Souk Eye

Already on board with this beat, every few moments there’s a sound that feels like it’s pushing against a restraint, testing the resistance, planning on bursting through & becoming something bigger & there it is, that two minute mark delivers on all that tension ratcheting in a cool way. Yo hell yeah. So into this second half of the song & I think a lot of that has to do with how effective the build up is. A great closer


OVERALL: Right now the word that comes to mind is “uneven” but like I said before, I’m not sure how much of that is due to what I was expecting compared to what was actually there. At least for now, I’m way more into the second half of the album although really everything from ‘Sorcererz’ onward delivered something worthwhile. Very interested to see how the songs I didn’t like at first sound on repeat listens, the only song I can’t see myself liking is ‘Hollywood’ unless that Principle-less version I asked for exists somewhere

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