“Calling the world from isolation”, The Gorillaz dropped a hot summery track, with an accompanying music vid on May 31. ‘Humility’ was released in order to tease The Gorillaz’ new album ‘The Now Now’ which is set to release one the 29th of June. The song itself carries a very beachy vibe throughout, it also features The Gorillaz’ trademark synth sound, some uplifting guitar riffs along with some vocals from 2D, something the fans felt ‘Humanz’ sorely lacked. All these pieces come together to prove that The Gorrilaz are at their strongest when they leave the darkness at the doorstep and get uplifting and trippy. However, while the song is undoubtedly upbeat, the lyrics themselves might tell another story.
Some backstory before we dive into that; before the songs release, the bands founder and bassist, Murdoc Niccals was arrested and thrown in prison for smuggling. He has since been replaced by former powerpuff girls villan and leader of the Gangreen gang, Ace. It is unclear how he came to join the group though it is known that he and the bands guitarist, Noodle are good friends.
The main vocalist and the star of the video, 2D has had a long and troubled history with Murdoc, so you’d expect him to say something about his bandmate, but he hasn’t, at least not on record. 2Ds appearance in the video for ‘Humility’ has lead people to believe that 2D is happy with Murdoc out of the picture, however the lyrics make 2D look as though he’s torn between feeling free without Murdoc, and with the isolation of being in the band without him. this can be found in the first verse of the song.
“Calling the world from isolation
‘Cause right now, that’s the ball where we be chained
And if you’re coming back to find me
You’d better have good aim..”
Here 2D seems liberated, almost cocky at the fact that Murdoc is beyond reach ‘…if youre coming back to find me, you’d better have good aim..’ however, the very next line tells a different story:
“Shoot it true
I need you in the picture
That’s why I’m calling you..”
It looks like 2D is pleading for Murdoc to try to come back to “shoot it true”. He even says outright that he needs Murdoc “in the picture” and that he is calling out to Murdoc. this continues into the chorus:
“I’m the lonely twin, the left hand
Reset myself and get back on track…”
He is battling with himself, debating wether or not he should miss Murdoc or if he should reset himself and “get back on track”. Then he decides:
“I don’t want this isolation
See the state I’m in now?”
2D says this at the point in the video where he looks his absolute happiest “See the state i’m in now?” this is a warning, this happiness isn’t real its a front that 2D is putting up, probably for the sake of the rest of the band, but deep down, 2D is broken, he misses Murdoc deeply. even though 2D wants so badly to be free from him, he needs Murdoc. Its understandable seeing as theyve been making music together for nineteen years. Before Noodle, before Russel it was just 2D and Murdoc. and now they’ve been separated, seemingly for good. Now all 2D can do is make music, not only to express these feelings, but in an attempt to call Murdoc…out of isolation.