Gorillaz announced they’re starting an Apple Music radio show called Song Machine Radio to be released alongside their Song Machine album. Song Machine is an audiovisual project from the band consisting of a collection of singles and music videos released monthly as episodes.
Each of the band’s characters — 2D, Murdoc Niccals, Noodle and Russel — will host an episode of the series, which will feature music selections, special guests and segments with Gorillaz co-founders Damon Albarn and Jamie Hewlett.
The first episode is hosted by 2D and will be released on Oct. 19, shortly before the Song Machine series of singles will culminate in release of a full length project called Song Machine Season One – Strange Timez on Oct. 23.
The most recent single from the project, titled “The Pink Phantom,” was released earlier this month and features Elton John and 6LACK. It was the seventh episode of the Song Machine series, following “Strange Timez,” featuring Robert Smith of The Cure. Before that came “Pac-Man” featuring Schoolboy Q, “Friday 13 featuring rapper Octavian, “Aries” featuring Peter Hook and Georgia, “Désolé” featuring Fatoumata Diawara and “Momentary Bliss” featuring slowthai and Slaves.
A deluxe edition of the album will also be released, which will feature the song “How Far,” with UK grime artist Skepta and the late afrobeat legend Tony Allen. Other guest features on the deluxe edition include CHAI, EARTHGANG, Goldlink, Joan As Police Woman, JPEGMAFIA, Moonchild Sanelly and Unknown Mortal Orchestra.
The band announced in September that they will perform via a global livestream December 12 and 14. The performances will take place in London and will be the band’s first in two years.
“Song Machine is a whole new way of doing what we do. Gorillaz breaking the mold ‘cos the mold got old. World is moving faster than a supercharged particle, so we’ve gotta stay ready to drop,” said the band’s drummer Russel in a press release.
Gorillaz also performed in a virtual version of the Outside Lands festival — the largest independently owned music festival in the country — called Inside Lands in August. The festival was held for free on Twitch and also featured performances from artists including Anderson .Paak and The Free Nationals, Brittany Howard, Cage the Elephant, J. Cole, Jack White, Kehlani, Leon Bridges and Major Lazer.