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Date: May 17 2010

Themes: Alternative, Music

Grammar: Modal Verbs


1. Learn Vocabulary - Learn some new vocabulary before you start the lesson.

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2. Read and Prepare - Read the introduction and prepare to hear the audio.

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Since the late ‘90s, Gorillaz has been challenging the public’s ideas of what it means to be a band. A rotating group of musicians writes and records the songs, but the band is represented by four cartoon characters. At live shows, musicians play in the shadows while images of the animated characters appear on giant video screens.

The members of Gorillaz also collaborate with other artists, who sometimes show up at their concerts and play alongside video images of the band. The latest Gorillaz album, Plastic Beach, features guest spots from artists as diverse as Snoop Dogg, members of the Clash, and the Lebanese National Orchestra for Oriental Arabic Music.

Find out if Devan and Jeff think Gorillaz is a goofy gimmick or a musical revolution.


1. Listen and Read - Listen to the audio and read the dialog at the same time.

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2. Study - Read the dialog again to see how the vocab words are used.





Jeff:  Hey Devan, have you heard that new Gorillaz album?

Devan:  I haven’t. I didn’t even realize they were still together until I just heard that they had a single coming out recently.

Jeff:  Yeah, I heard a remix of one of the songs online today. It was pretty good.

Devan:  Yeah. I still don’t even fully understand the concept of their band, so it’s…It’s like they’re animated characters, right?

Jeff:  Yeah, they’re real-life musicians but the image of the band is presented with animated characters.

Devan:  So, it seems like our concept of what a band is or can be has kind of changed in this decade, you know? Like you don’t even have to have real people playing instruments anymore, you can be cartoons. It’s just kind of a new concept, it’s very strange.

Jeff:  I’d agree. The 2-D characters have taken over the flesh-and-blood, apparently.

Devan:  And then I heard that at their concerts there’s a jumbo-tron that like projects characters onto the screen, which to me seems weird because it’s like going to a concert to watch TV almost. Like I thought the whole point of going to a concert is to see the musicians live, you know? But if it’s just a screen…I don’t know, do you feel like that defeats the purpose?

Jeff:  I don’t think so, I think it’s just a new thing that they’re experimenting with, which is what a lot of art is all about.


Grammar Point

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Devan is a little confused about the band Gorillaz. Jeff explains the concept behind the band. Flesh-and-blood musicians play the music, but the image of the band is four cartoon characters.

At live shows, video clips of the animated characters are shown on jumbo-trons. Devan thinks it sounds pointless to go to a concert just to watch videos of cartoon characters on a huge TV screen. But Jeff disagrees. He likes Gorillaz’ music and thinks the concept of the band is interesting and innovative.

Has your concept of a band changed in the last decade? Would you like to go to a Gorillaz concert?



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yes, I’d go. to others like the band’s music. I have some albums.

06:39 PM Sep 24 2012 |




Humm I know little about this band and I just know one music…I agree that is a new band concept but I agree with Devan about to go in a show and i have to watch a big screen :P I'm conservative because I still remain the old concept that show have to have a real band! in flash-and-blood playing heheI guess it is coolest ;)

08:02 PM Jun 24 2010 |



I have nothing to say about this band

12:30 PM May 22 2010 |




I don't have any concept of any band. I don't have any Gorillaz' cd's and I never wanted to go to their concert or, saying in another words, I wouldn't make any efforts to do it, but if you've a got a couple tickets I don't mind visiting one actually.

12:00 PM May 21 2010 |




i rather watch tv while i am listening Gorillaz

10:34 PM May 18 2010 |



It does not work for me, no way… my concept of band is people showing what they know on stage… not behind the huge screens.

08:01 PM May 18 2010 |


Viet Nam

I prefer wathching the flesh and blood musician. Tongue outAnyway, the concert of the animated characters is also interesting concept, so if the ticket is for free, i will go. LOL.

01:16 AM May 18 2010 |




id love to go to a Gorilaz's concert. it would be really cool.

10:57 PM May 17 2010 |

Jeremy Chen


If musicians' images don't matter, at least the performances I think  have to be live.

10:54 PM May 17 2010 |

laura, baby!


My concept of a band is musicians playing, and yeah! I really like to go to a live show of Gorillaz! the important thing is the music, no the image!

08:07 PM May 17 2010 |





 That's a great band for sure…

They ve a  new concept of music, and of art in general…

Everything that is new causes some refusal…

But I d like to go to a gorillaz concert… Why not??? lol lol lol

06:42 PM May 17 2010 |

Snazz De

Snazz De

United Kingdom

ohhhhhhhhh i didn't know that


04:43 PM May 17 2010 |

munhozsonecaSuper Member!


I think it's a fusion of technology with music, and I like the result!

For me Gorrilaz is a great band, cause behind the cartoons there are some great musicians names!

But I think that I wouldn't pay to go to a concert to watch one band in a big screen!

04:19 PM May 17 2010 |




no i wouldn't like to participate to one concerts of this group, because they arent real as they seems to be,,, i agree with  Devan when she says in concerts u go to see singers live not their shadows….

03:10 PM May 17 2010 |



they r awesome ….;) i like their style of music and specially their characters ..russel hobbs is the best one …..:D

02:09 PM May 17 2010 |




i think it is a new concept to have anamated characters when the mucians playing music,it funny!

01:54 PM May 17 2010 |



i don't like to go to a Gorillaz concert. if i had the chance to assist to a concert, simply because i like to see the musicians in flesh and blood not on the screen.

01:21 PM May 17 2010 |




it is   very   good . 

know  some   new  things.

01:16 PM May 17 2010 |

The sweet

The sweet

Russian Federation

Why not go to a Gorillaz concert? It seems to me they're relly good. I like the concept of a band.

11:43 AM May 17 2010 |




oh for me it is a very new concept

11:41 AM May 17 2010 |

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