Welp, say goodbye to Death Grips. Well, at least that’s what a note on their Facebook page says. The trio of MC Stefan Burnett, drummer Zach Hill and producer Andy Morin (aka Flatlander) have effectively scrapped all future plans, except the one to release their final album The Powers That B later this year. “We are now at our best and so Death Grips is over,” is how their handwritten napkin note begins. Later, they explain, “Death Grips was and always has been a conceptual art exhibition anchored by sound and vision above and beyond a ‘band.'” You could say that explains a lot, or that it’s just some BS excuse following all of the controversy they caused in the last few years. They’ve made headlines several times for cancelling or even not showing up to shows they were scheduled to play. Last fall there was a whole thing about how they didn’t show up for a Lollapalooza pre-show (or Lollapalooza itself) and instead had a drum kit set up on stage, a fan letter projected on a screen, all while the studio versions of their songs blasted over the speakers. The crowd had no idea what was going on, and neither did the venue until about an hour after their scheduled start time. Then there was the fight with Epic Records. They signed to the label and were supposed to release an album with them, but decided just to leak the whole thing and offer it as a free download instead. It was the start of a trend that continues to this very day, in that the band’s last three records were all given away for free and with absolutely zero advance notice. The first half of their forthcoming Powers… double album was made available to download a little less than a month ago, and featured contributions on all tracks from Bjork. As I’ve already mentioned, the second half will be out later this year, also as a free download, though you’ll be able to purchase physical copies of the full thing if that’s more your style. Anyways, I’m hard pressed to think of a more divisive band from the last few years. Even their music, which many hailed as inventive and brilliant, rubbed others the absolutely wrong way. To my ears they somehow managed to blend punk rock, hip hop and EDM into one unholy beast that more often than not scared the crap out of you. I had an appreciation for what they were doing sonically. All the other stuff not related to music? Eh, I just rolled my eyes. Let’s say I’m glad they’re finished, and are going out on their own terms before they spiralled into the realm of the completely insane. RIP Death Grips. Okay, let’s get to today’s Pick Your Poison, shall we? Today’s gold star tracks come from Algernon Doll, False Colors, Ladada, Royale and We Are The Brave. In the Soundcloud section after the jump, stream new songs from The Griswolds, Landlady, Lucius (covering Tears For Fears), No Lands, Priory and Titus Andronicus.
Windham Flat – The Cure
The Griswolds – Down and Out
Landlady – Girl
Lucius – Everybody Wants to Rule the World (Tears For Fears cover)
No Lands – City
Priory – Weekend
Titus Andronicus – Stranded (On My Own)