‘The Money Store’ grips listeners, meshes sound
Published: Thursday, May 10, 2012
Updated: Thursday, May 10, 2012 18:05
A melodic mix of aggression, complicated beats and an energetic ambience makes heads nod to this digital chaos.
Death Grips, an experimental hip-hop group from Sacramento, released its debut album “The Money Store” on April 24. This magnificent collection of 13 tracks surges through the brain, and one can appreciate the production because it creates a unique medley of two genres that most people listen to apart.
The group is comprised of Stefan Burnett, also known as MC Ride, Zach Hill and Andy Morin, and their most current work matches up to their critically acclaimed 2011 mixtape “Exmilitary.”
Hill, known for his incredibly fast drumming in his solo work and math rock band Hella, assumes his role on the drums. The vocalist Burnett’s deep and raspy voice and abstract lyrics were necessary to make this a real piece of art.
The electronic undertones implemented with MC Ride’s fragmented delivery of words resonate throughout the album, acting as a bind to mend the two genres into one. Yet, that description really does not truly describe the group’s effort because it has attributes similar to many other specific genres as well.
The album is 41 minutes long and it does not really disappoint in any way. Death Grips accomplished something truly different and intriguing.
It could be argued that Death Grips’ mixtape is better in comparison, but it is really just a matter of preference.
This album has a slightly brighter tone than “Exmilitary,” but the songs do deliver the same unique sound and aggression that the band was first noticed for. Yet, much of “The Money Store” in its sound is a bit milder and is not obviously projecting such a dark mood like its predecessor.
As cryptic as the lyrics are, the themes begin to piece together after a couple of listens. Its contents are crude and profanity is abundant, and there are even fetishes and drug usage described. However, it is ingenious how mechanical and hauntingly good it sounds when combined with the instrumentals.
The repetitiveness of notes in songs like the first track, “Get Got,” sucks in listeners by making a surprisingly pleasant layering of sounds. But after the first track and until about midway through the CD, the tracks seem to be decent fillers for the best yet to come.
“Hustle Bones” is a catchy track as the selection escalates from low to high notes throughout the whole song.
The songs “I’ve Seen Footage” and “Hacker” are great examples of incorporating all of the band’s strong points as all members are clearly heard contributing to these songs.
A downside to “The Money Store” is that it feels a bit rushed because already the group plans to release another album this fall. As creative as the group has been, its upcoming release will need to rise above its already high expectations.