The World is An Island Now By Jonny 5 of the Flobots You know what’s a strange feeling? Listening to another band’s album and hearing the themes from your own album. It’s especially strange when the album come out just two week before yours, meaning there’s no way either of you could have influenced the other. This strange feeling is what I am experiencing right now. As I write this, I’m listening to the new Gorillaz album, Plastic Beach, and hearing an uncanny amount of thematic similarity to our new album, Survival Story. In case you think I’m just a self-involved artist who sees his own ideas in everything, I’ll list what I’ve noticed so far and let you decide for yourself. Plastic Beach features a floating island made of debris on its cover. Survival Story features a tidal wave rushing toward a decimated shoreline. Both albums contain constant references to the ocean and rising water levels. The Plastic Beach backstory includes shiny toys made from industrial waste.
Our song “Airplane Mode” was inspired by a compost heap. Their track, “White Flag” alludes to Atlantis. Our first single is “White Flag Warrior” and the first song we wrote on this album was “Defend Atlantis”. If these were merely surface similarities, I wouldn’t be calling attention to them (if anything, I’d probably be annoyed, or even worrying that someone might cry copycat). But what’s fascinating to me is that these two albums seems to be coming from the same fundamental place. As different as they are musically and in tone, each is a response to the fact that this planet is approaching limits and that this reality is starting to sink in. Global warming, rising tides, overflowing landfills, and peak oil are looming on the horizon, and they’re having an effect on the zeitgeist that we artists tap into to make our music.