Artist: Death Grips
Title: The Money Store
Death Grips is a new frontier in experimental hip-hop. The Sacramento trio consisting of vocalist Stefan Burnett, drummer Zack Hill and Andy Morin on the keys have created some kind of bizarre, compelling, hybrid between hip-hop and dub-step that I’ve decided to helpfully term “wub-hop.” The unconventional, and fairly new band, seem to be on the fast track to the big time after already landing a contract with Epic Records.
The album is a monster. Dark and intense, adrenaline fueled monster whose unique sound draws from other genres as it reinvents them. It’s an album fit for crowded nightclubs and underground dance fests.“The Fever (Aye Aye)” and “Hustle Bones” in particular got my blood pumping. The lyrics can be hard to decipher, but the anger and rage that drives this intense record is crystal clear. The pounding from the speakers makes it way into you’re head and heart, thanks in large part to Hill’s highly technical drumming.
“I’ve Seen Footage” is uncharacteristically catchy and rhythmic compared to the chaotic rage of the rest of the album, but it gives Burnett a chance to prove he can spit rhymes like a champ and he offers up some clearer commentary on violence and media. Morin’s synthesizer does double duty as a heavy electric guitar, making this song the closest to the rap/rock genre that some have thrown this album into for convenience. The rest of the record though is a dark and pounding head trip.
It’s a solid debut album for sure, and the especially for a band that has shows a lot of promise and passion. It is perhaps telling too that their follow up album was announced the same day as The Money Store and is scheduled to be released this fall, Epic Records is apparently doubling down on their success in the alternative seen – and with good reason.