The Herd

Death Grips – Exmilitary Mixtape

Carter Stevens, Staff Writer

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Just want to start off by being perfectly clear that I am not a writer, and I don’t know anything music. I just enjoy a good album like everyone else, and this album changed how I viewed rap.This mixtape is the first project from the experimental hip-hop group, Death Grips. The world first experienced this wonderful tape 25th of April in the fair year of 2011. It features Stefan Burnett, known by his stage name MC Ride on vocals, Zach Hill on the drums, and Andy Morin on the bass guitar. The entrance to the tape is an eerie and mysterious bass riff coupled with Charles Manson’s interview that sets the tone for the rest of this album as one of anger. MC ride delivers hard-hitting lyrics that address greed, drugs, and the wrongs of human nature. He delivers every flow and bar at the top of his lungs, and exerts himself unlike anything else at the time in the hip-hop game. Death Grips is known for their sampling, and some notable samples on this project include Pink Floyd’s “Interstellar Overdrive” on “I Want It I Need It” and Link Wray’s “Rumble” on “Spread Eagle Cross the Block”. Some personal  favorites include “Guillotine,” “Takyon (Death Yon),” and “Culture Shock.” The appeal behind Death Grips is from one song after another as it pulls out all the stops and doesn’t consider what crosses the boundary and what doesn’t. “Takyon (Death Yon)” is a perfect example of such, primarily because it is so versatile and vocal. It has its own unique style. One might say that MC Ride wants to sound like your incoherent drunk uncle after he has had one too many cans of Pabst Blue Ribbons at Thanksgiving dinner. He seeks to question what rap music has to sound like in order to be “mainstream”.He has a stylistic and melodic flow that is unmatched by anyone else. “Guillotine” is by far the group’s most popular song because of its famous hook, “It goes Yah.” The music video for the song features MC Ride in the passenger seat of a sedan with the windows having been replaced with a static black and matches the songs aggressive tone. Overall, if you want to hear something that is in your face, this mixtape is for you.

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Death Grips – Exmilitary Mixtape