Instead of a normal album rollout, The Gorillaz are trying a new release schedule: Throughout the year, they will release 13 songs and music videos. In addition, each track will feature musicians who have never collaborated with the group before. With the release of “Friday The 13th” featuring Octavian on June 9th, four tracks have been released this year. The track opens with a crack of thunder, in tune with the Friday the 13th vibe, and begins with an overlay of Octavian singing light vocals over a synthy-beat. The song begins to enter a hypnotic rhythm overlaid with Murdoc, 2-D, Noodle, and Russel. Octavian sings, “I been drinkin’ and smokin’ too much, that shit damages.” The song reads as a narrative based on the singer being high on hard intoxicants. Shown In the structure of the lyrics itself, it seems as if Octavian continually tries to hit rhymes and oops, sometimes sticking the landing but other times narrowly missing the mark. As the song continues, the lyrics begin to unravel from a story about drugs into a story about the expectations of a lady and love with Octavian singing out, “I’m just prayin’ that she loyal, is she loyal, yeah?”
During the song, we are presented in the music video with the Gorillaz’ faces (all of which look extremely beat up) and Octavian’s face coming in and out of focus, overlaid on top of a long tunnel. The lights in the tunnel appear to have star filters on them, making each light twinkle and takeover the picture plane. As the song progresses and the references to drugs begin to become more sinister, the lights start to mirror and merge to create an air of chaos. Overall, “Friday the 13th” seems to be about a wild night with friends that unfortunately spirals out of control on an unlucky night of binging, making the narrator begin to question himself and his relationships.
Watch the Gorillaz’ “Friday the 13th” here