Gorillaz are a British virtual band created in 1998 by musician Damon Albarn and artist Jamie Hewlett.
The band primarily consists of four animated members: 2-D (lead vocals, keyboards), Murdoc Niccals (bass guitar), Noodle (guitar, keyboards), and Russel Hobbs(drums and percussion). Their fictional universe is explored through music videos, interviews, and other short cartoons. In reality, Albarn is the only permanent musical contributor, and often collaborates with other musicians.
With Gorillaz, Albarn departed from the distinct Britpop of his band Blur and explored influences including hip hop, electronic music, and world music through an “eccentrically postmodern” approach. The band’s 2001 debut album Gorillaz sold over 7 million copies worldwide. It was nominated for the Mercury Prize, but the nomination was withdrawn at the band’s request. Their second studio album, Demon Days (2005), went six times platinum in the UK and double platinum in the US, and has sold over 8 million copies worldwide. The band has won other awards, including one Grammy Award, two MTV Video Music Awards, an NME Award and three MTV Europe Music Awards.
The third Gorillaz studio album, Plastic Beach, was released in March 2010. The fourth, The Fall, was released in December 2010 as a free download for fan club members, then in April 2011 as a physical release. In 2017, after a five-year hiatus, Gorillaz announced their fifth studio album Humanz. Their sixth studio album, The Now Now, will be released on 29 June 2018. Gorillaz have been nominated for ten Brit Awards and won Best British Group at the 2018 Brit Awards.