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Empire Ants - Gorillaz

Empire Ants

Plastic Beach
electronic alternative rock trip-hop pop


"Empire Ants" is a song by virtual band Gorillaz, released on their third studio album Plastic Beach. It features guest vocals and instrumentation from the trip hop band Little Dragon. Gorillaz frontman Damon Albarn was first introduced to Little Dragon through his partner Suzi Winstanley, who was a fan of the band's music. Yukimi Nagano had not known of Gorillaz prior to collaborating, and was initially ambivalent towards the idea of collaboration; when Nagano's manager explained that Albarn was a member of English rock band Blur, she expressed mild surprise that Albarn still made music. Nagano later explained: "I definitely wasn’t as charged as I perhaps might have been if I knew who they were. Everyone was telling me it was a big deal." Overview Nagano and Albarn spent multiple days at Studio 13, Albarn's personal studio in London, England; Nagano's vocal contributions to "Empire Ants" and "To Binge" were recorded during this time. Albarn played several instrumental tracks for Nagano, allowing her to choose which would be used for the collaboration. Nagano enjoyed collaborating with Albarn, praising both the diversity of the tracks and the organic nature of the recording process. Live performances "Empire Ants" was performed live throughout the Escape to Plastic Beach world tour. Both Nagano and Little Dragon bassist Fredrik Wallin toured alongside Gorillaz for the North American leg of the tour, with the remainder of Little Dragon joining on for the European and Oceanic legs. The song was also performed at Coachella 2010, an event which Nagano would later claim was a turning point for her as an artist. For Humanz Tour, Nagano reunited with Gorillaz to perform "Empire Ants" at the Outside Lands Music Festival in San Francisco in 11 August 2017, her first performance of the song in nearly 7 years.


Gorillaz are a British virtual band created in 1998 by musician Damon Albarn and artist Jamie Hewlett. The band currently consists of four animated members: 2-D (lead vocals, keyboards), Ace (from The Powerpuff Girls; replacing Murdoc Niccals, while he is in prison.) (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 Show more ...

Empire Ants - Gorillaz

Oh, joys arise, the sun has come again to hold you
Sailing out the doldrums of the week
The polyphonic prayer is here, it's all around you
It's all around you out here

And if the whole world is crashing down on you
Fall through space, out of mind with me
Where the emptiness we leave behind on warm air rising
Those are the shadows far away

The falling of the whole empire, it's here to hold you
Rolling out and haunted till it sinks

Little memories, marching on
Your little feet working the machine
Will it spin? Will it soar?
My little dream working the machine

Soothe like a wave
And crash far
Closing in on the moon
And who we are

Little memories
Your little feet working the machine
Will it spin? Will it soar?
My little dream working the machine

Soothe like a wave
And crash far
Closing in on the moon
And who we are



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