Tuesday, 10 April 2018

Death Grips "No Love Deep Web" (2013)

Not long of the back of their utterly brilliant Money Store debut, the Sacramento trio Death Grips surround themselves in controversy by releasing this album for free online despite their record label Epic pushing back the release date to clear the sampling rights. It ended up with them being dropped from the label, that and the album cover stirred up a lot of talk around the record. To write the album name across an erect penis is a pretty bizarre antic, the fact they did it and used it is pure art, even if obscene or offensive to some when an idea is brought into the physical world its reactions have meaning, even if mostly comical or amusing and sometimes upsetting.

They are steeped in rebellion, deconstructing any norms with their behavior and antics however it wouldn't be as interesting without the music and in this moment I think we find the group at their most cohesive and uniformed musically. No Love Deep Web is a highly synthetic record, steeped in electronic tones that make for a steady and consistent thirteen tracks that flow together in any order. Whats great is that it doesn't bore or tire in its forty five minute duration however there are clearly high and low points with Black Dice's hooks and melodies not quite landing as hard with a rather tame MC Ride rhyming in a temperate manor.

In comparison the opener Come Up And Get me is an absolute banger, as many songs are from this record, its monstrous engulfing bass noise and stereo panned synths are as dizzying as the paranoid and manic MC Ride who spews out dark and troubling narratives in a frantic manor, playing out the last moments of a paranoid schizophrenic individuals last moments seemingly being hunted for some wrong doing. The tone set on its opener is fitting for whole record where Ride seems to be falling into the darkness of apathy and misanthropy as he deconstructs human behavior to a deeply lonely and suspicious mindset.

His dark and violent persona is oddly contrasted to the instrumentals, they don't align with one another yet the chemistry is just magic. With a high tolerance for experimentation, elasticated grooves and of kilter beats intersect conventional rhythms which sharp, crisp and snappy textures. The electronics play off these tight drums with a keen ear, often complementing the grooves with spacious songs that play of their groove. The electronics and synths are very spacey and "out there". Lots of rich alien textures and quirky melodies that between thirteen tracks have a lot of variety while still sounding very uniform. Pop is the records most spacey song, its charging up synth noises leading into a astral melody exemplifies this quality in the record.

I rate this album highly for how fantastic and interesting it was before I knew it like the back of my hand. With time it feels as if half the tracks have staled somewhat as these songs do lack a certain density to them. The compositions in all fairness are relatively minimalist, the noisy nature of the electronics do mask its simplicity but one half of the record that's never been a problem. Those songs have held up tremendously well and a handful would be contenders for my favorite Death Grips songs.

Favorite Tracks: Come Up And Get Me, Lil Boy, No Love, Hunger Games, Pop, Bass Rattle Stars Out The Sky, Artificial Death In The West
Rating: 9/10