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Stream: Gorillaz f. Bobby Womack & Mos Def, “Stylo”

January 20, 2010

Damon Albarn has a formula for the first tastes of Gorillaz albums: Whether it's the self-titled debut's "Clint Eastwood" or Demon Dayz's "Dirty Harry", you can rely on a heavy mid-tempo break, a lofty disembodied vocal and a left field rap verse. "Stylo," from the upcoming Plastic Beach (Capitol, March 9) is no different on the surface, but there are some notable shifts in both style and substance. First, the beat is not anywhere near the sunny trip-hop vibes of its predecessors, built instead on a motorik bass and metronomic and cold snare. There is no sun here. So when the legitimately legendary Bobby Womack wails on the chorus, it's almost shocking, not because it's weird but because it sounds so much like an awesome relic from an unrealized ’80s apocalypse, like Womack has been trapped in a nuclear shelter since So Many Rivers came out and now he's pissed. Mos Def's verse gets a little buried at the end, but by that point it doesn't really matter, the interplay between Albarn's disaffected whisper and Womack's powerful howl too awesome to even worry about what else is going on. Hopefully the rest of the album is this dark and weird. Check the cover and enticing tracklist after the jump and stay tuned for what will obviously be a ridiculous video.

Gorillaz f. Bobby Womack & Mos Def, "Stylo"

1. Orchestral Intro
2. Welcome To The World Of The Plastic Beach (feat. Snoop Dogg and Hypnotic Brass Ensemble)
3. White Flag (feat. Kano & Bashy)
4. Rhinestone Eyes
5. Stylo (feat. Bobby Womack and Mos Def)
6. Superfast Jellyfish (feat. Gruff Rhys and De La Soul)
7. Empire Ants (feat. Little Dragon)
8. Glitter Freeze (feat. Mark E Smith)
9. Some Kind Of Nature (feat. Lou Reed)
10. On Melancholy Hill
11. Broken
12. Sweepstakes (feat. Mos Def & Hypnotic Brass Ensemble)
13. Plastic Beach (feat. Mick Jones & Paul Simonon)
14. To Binge (feat. Little Dragon)
15. Cloud Of Unknowing (feat. Bobby Womack)
16. Pirate Jet

Stream: Gorillaz f. Bobby Womack & Mos Def, “Stylo”