Death Grips not trying to impress with new record

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Odd Future Wolf Gang Kill Them All, often referred to as OFWGKTA or Odd Future, is a hip-hop group. (Courtesy of Ofdesignyoutrust)

OK, let’s get this out of the way — the comparisons between Death Grips and Odd Future with the intent of ridiculing Odd Future are half-true.

Both groups practice and advocate freedom, unhindered by parents, government or other controlling influences.

That’s where the comparisons end, though.

Odd Future plays jazz harmonies at their tie-die festivals. Death Grips wants to detonate bodies and reanimate them as enlightened star sentinels.

Does that make sense? “Maybe” or “not quite,” but that’s the point.

“Government Plates” isn’t a record of manifestos so much as it is an emotional can of worms.

Album opener “You might think he loves you but I know what he really loves you for it’s your brand new leopard skin pillbox hat” opens with a straining organ before collapsing into a smattering of bass.

It’s the opposite of “Beware,” the album opener for their first mixtape “Ex-Military.”

“Beware” is a manifesto, a rallying cry against submission with a ranting Charles Manson as it’s shining model. “You might think he…” is color, energy, sound, sugar and little else.

The rest of the album follows suit.

“Birds,” the album’s only single, works jangly, no-wave guitars into a crackling mood piece. “Soft” and “hard” sounds alike are on this album, but to differentiate between the two here is missing the point.

“Anne Bonny” opens with a tantalizing synth line before thrashing itself against a dying robot’s nervous system, bloops and tears and all.

“I’m Overflow” is one long chant — the album itself is a series of long chants — under drippy milk wah-wah and chilled out drums.

Challenging the tenets of human culture is Death Grips’ main goal.

“Ex-Military” felt like a band formally introducing itself to the world.

“Government Plates” feels like a band that’s dropped its pretensions. MC Ride’s dropped his individualist free-flow in favor of church stomping on the psyche.

After four albums of expressionist noise-rap, Death Grips is to individualism what Public Enemy is to politics. One wonders how far and where the band will go from here, but eh.

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