After nearly six years of studio silence, virtual band Gorillaz is nearly ready to release their newest studio album.

Band lead Damon Albarn says that for the past ten months he has been away at the studio preparing for a 2016/17 release. So far Albarn has remained fairly secretive about the overall sound and style of the new album, however, he has suggested that the new album could turn away from the piano-led ballads that were on his debut solo album “Everyday Robots”.

From an interview with the Canadian site Exclaim, Albarn says: “I’m determined that my next record will be very upbeat, and I will try to set myself the benchmark of 125 bpm and nothing underneath that.”

This would be a direct contrast to the band’s orchestral sounding “Plastic Beach”, and be more of a step towards the band’s “Demon Days”.

It has also been confirmed that the rap trio De La Soul will be guesting on the new album, alongside rapper Snoop Dog. Both were featured last on the album ‘Plastic Beach’.