Like an Italian-American-French-Albanian co-production from the sixties, The Good, The Bad & The Queen flex their muscles with this five-star cast.
Behind the great Damon Albarn (Blur and Gorillaz's frontman) is an army of ex-band members: Paul Simonon (ex-The Clash), Tony Allen (ex-Fela) and Simon Tong (ex-The Verve). When this supergroup was born in 2007 with an album simply called The Good, The Bad & The Queen, we were amazed by this almost Ennio Morricone-style soundtrack, with a little reggae, a little ‘80s, a little pop (in the way that The Kinks interpreted it) with the bitter-sweet feeling of wandering through a dreamlike London while feeling weighed down by the sorry state of the world... Eleven years later, this world isn’t getting any better. Always ready to speak out about the injustices of the world, Brexit seems to have inspired Damon Albarn more than ever. That’s one reason for the return of T.G.T.B.A.T.Q. with this Merrie Land album.
On the album cover there’s a photo of actor Michael Redgrave in Alberto Cavalcanti's Le Mannequin du ventriloque, one of the sketches from the 1945 film Au cœur de la nuit (Dead of Night). It follows the story of an unstable ventriloquist who believes that his immoral doll is actually alive. Another allegory for T.G.T.B.A.T.Q? To produce this second episode, Tony Visconti replaced Danger Mouse for a somewhat pensive result that underlines the melancholy of the melodies and the causticity of the lyrics. With these disillusioned atmospheres and sarcastic words the brain behind Blur and Gorillaz once again goes very Ray Davies, his hero from The Kinks.
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