Death Grips’ music is a car wreck, mangled flesh, a watercolour masterpiece updated Joker style with lurid streaks across its tranquil riverside scene: one simply can’t look – or listen – away.
Now that’s a band description! Much of the Sacramento trio’s first-impression appeal comes courtesy of wiry-limbed, hirsute and heavily tattooed frontman Stefan Burnett, aka MC Ride.
And it’s the energy of Death Grips that makes them so very important in 2012 – no other group is doing this, with this level of palpable commitment
Anger is an energy, some old punk once said; but it’s never quite been articulated like this, with negativity turned on its head and thrown at an audience as something to embrace.
Hailing from Sacramento, California, Death Grips was formed in late 2010 and consists of vocalist Stefan Burnett and production team Zach Hill and Andy Morin. The band dropped the highly acclaimed mix tape Exmilitary featuring the standout track “Guillotine”, Time Out NY’s #1 single of 2011. The release garnered critical praise from tastemakers such as Pitchfork, NME, Spin, The New Yorker, and more, with many call outs on year end best of lists.
Death Grips follow up Exmilitary with their Epic Records debut, The Money Store. The album builds on Exmilitary’s unique punk rap sound and explores new territory with standout tracks “Get Got”, “Blackjack”, and “I’ve Seen Footage”.
This isn’t really a rap record, and it’s certainly not a rock affair. It’s not an industrial set, and few high-profile DJs are about to slip its tracks into their dancefloor programmes. It is a Death Grips record, simple as; a completely successful experiment in isolating artistry from external pressures to produce an artefact that will inform pioneers-to-come.
The live setup consists of Burnett on vocals, Morin on keyboards and Hill on drums and it’s 100% brutal.
- “Truly, there is no trio on the planet right now capable of making the ungodly, unfettered and brutally visceral racket that Death Grips are spewing out. ‘Get Got’, from their stern second coming ‘The Money Store’, is a hyper-speed clash of souped-up synths and Ride’s glitch-ridden, gremlins-in-the-system rapping.”
Death Grips‘ album The Money Store also featured highly on BBC Music’s Best Albums of 2012….so far
What the critics are saying: ”Death Grips appeals to the knuckle-dragging troglodyte and the smirking smart kid in us: thick-headed goonery and bookish, viscera-free nerdiness, making beautifully misanthropic music together.” – Pitchfork (Best New Music, 8.7)
“Like a searing art-rap road-rash, Death Grips masterfully combine bellowing slow-flow rhymes, screechy Black Flag samples, and the lunatic genius from Hella going buck fuckin’ wild on drums.” – SPIN
“Unlike any of the other cool groups on the Coachella bill… The result was rap with the frenzied energy of a hardcore punk show” – Los Angeles Times
How about we let Death Grips have the final word with Guillotine