March 12, 2010
New Albums: Gorillaz and Andrew Lloyd Webber
Gorillaz – Plastic Beach
As I’m sitting here listening to Plastic Beach, Gorillaz’s third studio album, I’m both confused and impressed. It starts with an orchestral symphony, then it goes into a Middle-Eastern-sounding song (”White Flag”), and then a mixture of techno, punk, rap, r&b, etc. It’s strange, and yet…oddly appealing, too. I haven’t even really been a big fan of Gorillaz and their super-hit “Feel Good Inc.”
The way this band works is also, again, bizarre and unique: it is known as a virtual band– all of the members are animated. There are co-creators, David Albarn and Jamie Hewlett, and they have sold several million albums. Now they are back with Plastic Beach with a lot of anticipation. Well, their fans won’t be disappointed: the album contains 16 new tracks that all sound really, really different. I can’t stress that enough. Go from “White Flag” to “Cloud of Unknowing” and you’ll know what I mean.
They’re well-known, but definitely not mainstream (in my opinion). The album’s available now, so check it out!
Andrew Lloyd Webber – Love Never Dies (Cast Recording)
I know, I know, this is very different from the Gorillaz.
Anyway, Andrew Lloyd Webber has written a sequel to what is possibly his most famous musical, The Phantom of the Opera. Christine and the Phantom are both back in Love Never Dies, as well as Raoul. I read the plot synopsis but I don’t think I should give away any spoilers…!
I have to say, though, that it is incredibly risky to write a sequel to something that is so popular and famous (hear that, James Cameron?). As far as I can tell, the reviews of the musical itself have been mixed–but, Andrew Lloyd Webber remains confident. He especially attributes any success that the show will have (despite poor reviews) to his actors and singers. And, really, I doubt you’ll find Broadway singers quite like the ones that will be cast for an Andrew Lloyd Webber show.
Without giving away song titles (and therefore plot details), I’ll just say that all of the singers sound great (better than Sarah Brightman, I think…though, I never really liked her voice for Christine). Sierra Boggess has a lovely voice (though she isn’t quite as perfect-looking as Emmy Rossum was in the film Phantom of the Opera…but who is, really?) and should live up to the hype on Broadway.
The cast recorded the entire album, and it’s out now (as is the musical itself), so check it out!
Posted by Shaane at 7:00 am