Major influence on new Gorillaz album revealed?

– While we await for the return of Gorillaz, Damon Albarn has dropped a huge hint about a pretty massive band that may have influenced the upcoming new album from the ‘Clint Eastwood’ and Feelgood Inc’ stars, Gigwise said.

Albarn was appearing at yesterday’s Ivor Novello Awards where he picked up the lifetime achievement award for his work with Blur, Gorillaz, The Good, The Bad & The Queen, as well as his myriad of soundtrack and other work.

Given a beautiful introduction from friend and bandmate Graham Coxon, we went along to hear his acceptance speech, where he spoke out about his love of Simple Minds – and how they may be shaping the new Gorillaz record, Gigwise said.

“Where do I start? Well, Simple Minds – fucking hell,” he said, gesturing towards the band who were in attendance to pick up the Ivor for Outstanding Song Collection. “Our first band was called Real Lives. Not a particularly memorable title, but our first gig was in a school assembly. We didn’t go to a great school, well it was a great school for our musical education, but it wasn’t necessarily one of the most open-minded parts of the country in the early 80s. From someone who grew up in Leytonstone, it was a culture shock to say the least.”

He continued: “Anyway, we were in this band and we had a guitarist who was an Edge from U2 obsessive, but we had a more kind of loose bass player who was really Simple Minds. Graham and me were a bit kind of more mercurial about what we like and what we don’t like, but they were more adamant.

“Looking back at it now, I loved pretending that I was in U2, but I just think that Simple Minds were cooler. ‘Promised You A Miracle’ – I listened to it when I started doing this new Gorillaz record and it just blew my mind, and it blew everyone who I was working with’s mind. They hadn’t even heard of Simple Minds, and they loved it – so that’s testament to it being incredible.”

Gorillaz have been sharing many teaser images and videos from the studio, with the likes of David Bowie and Noel Gallagher rumoured among the acts set to appear on the record.