Apart from thier very first single from their first album back in 2001, Gorillaz didn't really appeal to me. And then came the first single off thier second album, the incredibly infectious Feel Good Inc. (with De La Soul on vocals) and i was converted. A lot of people who might buy this album based on the strength of the single might end up being disappointed as Feel Good Inc is really the most accesible track; on the initial listen i was, but i went back and actually paid attention to the songs and was blown away. The production and mixing is just flawless and the fusion of pop, hip-hop and electronic-disco-funk creates an incredibly intriguing listening experience.
Running through the tracklisting, you'll notice that this album is dark and this mood is set right from the Intro which uses a sample from 'Dark Earth' out of the 'Dawn of the Dead' OST. There's alot of irony and social commentary in here especially in track 'Kids with Guns', 'Dirty harry' (with it's lyrics "I need a gun, to keep myself from harm" sung by the San Fernandez Children's Choir) 'O Green World' and 'Fire Comming Out of the Monkey's Head' (with a creepy monologue read out by a deadpan Dennis Hopper - one of the many celebrities and guest vocalists/mixers on this album). But unlike many other artists, like Radiohead and Muse which use themes of doom and gloom, Gorillaz don't become bogged down in it and or take themselves too seriously, giving a cool, trippy, cartoonish - if a little bit eerie - listening experience.