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Monday, September 25, 2023

Record Routine: Death Grips come out with potential last album fall flat

Death Grips, an experimental hip-hop group from Sacramento, California has received critical acclaim from most sources with the release of their previous three studio albums. Though they have technically been disbanded since last July, that has not stopped them from making music. Jenny Death, the second part of a two-part album called The Powers That B, is now available online and is set for official release March 31.

Death Grips has never let anyone tell them what to do or how to do it, and that sure hasn’t changed in Jenny Death. Their genre, described as somewhere between industrial hip-hop and full-out punk rock, allows their brutality to divulge. You are slapped in the face right away with their first song, “Break Mirrors With My Face In The United States.” With the punching rhythms and chaotic melodies that persist throughout the album, the sting never goes away.

While Jenny Death’s goal is to be an unapologetic stand against society, not unlike Kendrick’s new To Pimp a Butterfly, the lyrics sometimes drift further from genuine nihilism and seem more like the rants of an angsty teenager. However, Jenny Death does have its gems. In “Inanimate Sensation,” the band uses sexual and drug references to take a stand against mainstream music, taking a stab at Kanye West’s “Black Skinhead” when they chant “Brag you're making music, naw, you're makin bacon/ Skinhead, skinhead inna dublin.” The album reaches a high point in “On GP,” when rapper MC Ride invites over-intrusive fans to take a look at his personal life as he describes his thoughts of suicide.

Death Grips is a hard band to understand, and it’s even harder to anticipate what they’ll do next. Because the band is technically separated, this logically was their last album.  However, you never know with Death Grips. Jenny Death concludes with an instrumental called “Death Grips 2.0,” which may be foreshadowing that the band is not done just yet.

Rating: C-

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