Young The Giant cover Gorillaz & Little Dragon’s “Empire Ants”

You may remember that recently a visitor to this here site, the lovely Lynn Yang, provided us with some wonderful shots from Little Dragon’s Mulberry show in New York. Well, Lynn has now highlighted this cool cover of Gorillaz & Little Dragon’s “Empire Ants” by Young The Giant, who are a California rock band.

(Note: Video cannot be viewed outside of the US and there are currently no YouTube links available. If you’re in Canada you can view it using this link, however.)

“Although Irvine, California-based rock outfit Young The Giant has been well known for a little while on the indie circuit, the band’s impressive performance on the 2011 MTV Video Music Awards back in August undoubtedly increased their visibility among a broader crowd. Since that worked so well, MTV must have felt it was only right to bring the band back into the limelight through one of the network’s popular mediums. On Wednesday, November 9 at 7 p.m. EST, fans can head over to to watch Young The Giant perform on one of MTV’s most famous music programs, MTV Unplugged. Included in the show will be acoustic renditions of songs off of the band’s self-titled debut album and a cover of Gorillaz’ “Empire Ants,” the original of which features Little Dragon and can be found on the animated music group’s third album, Plastic Beach. To hold fans over until the show airs, Young The Giant’s string section-backed Unplugged cover of “Empire Ants” is now available for viewing. Check it out above.” Source.

Behind the scenes of Little Dragon and Gorillaz

Here are two very, very interesting videos (brought to my attention by a very kind contributor, Andrew), providing a rare glimpse into the humble nature of creating art and the fragility of the process, too. The glances that tell more than words could, and the light treading over undefined soundscapes.

1:46 – Hakan and Yukimi speaking to Damon Albarn about the “constant fragmentation of everything”. Note: At first I thought this was pretentious rambling, but it’s an interesting concept and possibly true.
2:14 – Yukimi recording vocals for “To Binge,” and Fredrick delicately providing that synth riff that’s so perfectly suits. “I watch the coloured animals cross the floor.”

2:40 – Fredrik and Hakan playing around on some keys.
2:42 – Yukimi picks out the instrumental to “Empire Ants” as a potential song she wants to work on. This is a fascinating clip, highlighting how Gorillaz’s/Damon’s collaborative process truly works. (By the by, nicely chosen track, Ms. Nagano.)
3:11-4:18 – Yukimi provides a layer of vocals over a rough instrumental edit of “Empire Ants”. This is an edit prior to the improvements and creativity brought about by Fred, Hakan, and Erik (who I can’t see in any of the videos), I assume.

Interesting stuff, eh?

I’m heading to California tomorrow for two months, with a slight chance of making the UCLA JazzReggae Festival in Los Angeles. To everyone going, have a great time and make sure to enjoy the event. To those in Tel Aviv tonight, we wish you the same.