Reviews in 200 Words

Relax, Das Racist

In Album on September 16, 2011 at 8:16 am

These guys are amping things up: hip-hop, rap, music, poetry, art. It’s so far beyond what you’ve heard before; they’re doing it all. It’s distorted synthesized sound at its best, with lyrics that will knock you over—so tight, so clever. The opening track, “Relax,” closes with a hysterical synthesized laugh that reduces the listener to a child: it’s silly, but oddly fun to hear. “Michael Jackson” is undeniably straight-up truth: this industry is so focused on money — but these guys are responding to that; they’re questioning. Das Racist seems to do the opposite of what a lot of hip-hop artists are doing — the intelligence here is almost hard to keep up with. But it’s fun as hell, too. Try to pick a favorite track off of this album — they seem to get better and better, and then you go back to the beginning and realize, no, they’re all just immense. “Middle of the Cake,” (featuring Anand Wilder) is a perfect example of the mantras that fill this album, and how incredibly it unpacks the weirdness of our society: “Urban Dictionary is for demons with college degrees; Google ad technology is artificial karma.” Yeah, we’re all sheep, but these ones are worth following.

-Micah Ling

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