Virtual band has sold more than 24 million albums worldwide
Today marks 20 years since Gorillaz released their eponymous debut album on March 26, 2001. In celebration of that, the band is prepping to release the first in a series of highly-anticipated album reissues, beginning with their self-titled debut. The attic of Kong Studios is a virtual treasure trove of Gorillaz ephemera, a giant biscuit tin of early ideas, deep dive musical moments, demos, early drawings and never-before-seen-or-heard Gorillaz memories. Murdoc Niccals, inspired by his hero Marie Kondo, will tackle that attic with a promise to spark joy in the hearts of fans around the world with a very special physical release featuring an abundance of declassified gems. More details coming soon.
“I’m exhausted. 20 years is a long time to be top of your game and let’s be clear here, it’s a one man gig keeping this show on the road,” says bassist Murdoc Niccals. “A lot of names get bandied about, a lot of pretenders to the throne, one or two in particular… But there is only one Murdoc Niccals. As an ex of mine once said, it’s hard to be a diamond in a rhinestone world.”
2021 will also see the exciting arrival of an all-new G Foot Collection, the band’s very own clothing line, relaunched to celebrate 20 years of the Gorillaz unique style. The band will be partnering with leading transmedia art and luxury collectables brand Superplastic, for the release of all-new limited edition vinyl toys and digital art collectibles featuring 2D, Murdoc, Noodle and Russel throughout the year.
Created by musician Damon Albarn and artist Jamie Hewlett, singer 2D, bassist Murdoc Niccals, drummer Russel Hobbs and Japanese guitar prodigy Noodle were formed following a collision of mishaps, meetings and pure luck to blow up a pre-digital world with their colorful backstory and ground-breaking virtual ways. Based at Kong Studios in West London, the band settled into a life of musical innovation with an eye-wateringly exciting roster of collaborators, a list that includes musical legends, geniuses and future stars from Elton John to Little Simz, MF DOOM to Jean-Michel Jarre, Grace Jones to slowthai, Kali Uchis to Sidiki Diabaté, plus so many more.
With seven albums to their name, Gorillaz is a truly global phenomenon, achieving success in entirely new and unique ways, touring the world from San Diego to Syria, Montevideo to Manchester and winning numerous awards including the coveted Jim Henson Creativity Honor.
Last year, they released the first annual Gorillaz Almanac, published in partnership with the renowned Z2 Comics. The Gorillaz Almanac is a full color, one-of-a-kind, fun-packed, 120+ page, sideways homage to two glorious decades of Gorillaz, featuring exclusive new artwork puzzles, games and more; plus a raft of special guest appearances from Gorillaz collaborators past and present.
The band has a full-length, scripted movie they have in the works. In 2019, a documentary about the band was released in partnership with Gorillaz Productions, Eleven, Trafalgar Releasing and Warner Music Entertainment. Gorillaz: Reject False Icons documents life in the studio with Albarn and co-founder Jamie Hewlett; producers The Twilite Tone of D /\ P, Remi Kabaka and James Ford; as well as stellar roll call of featured artists including Vince Staples, Jean-Michel Jarre, De La Soul, DRAM, Pusha T, Peven Everett, Little Simz, Jamie Principle, Yasiin Bey, Bootie Brown, Cheick Tidiane Seck, Graham Coxon, Pauline Black, Zebra Katz, Danny Brown, Ben Mendelson, Kelela, Jehnny Beth, Hypnotic Brass, Junior Dan, Shaun Ryder, Mavis Staples, Sidiki Diabete and Noel Gallagher.