KFJC 89.7FM
Album Review

clipping. – “Splendor and Misery” – [Deathbomb Arc]

lexi glass   8/20/2019   12-inch, Hip Hop

This 2016 sci-fi concept album is the defining work from LA experimental hip-hop group clipping. Over the ten years of its existence, the harsh noise-meets-hip-hop trio has found unlikely fame, thanks in part to the success of frontman Daveed Diggs, who rose to international superstardom as a member of the original cast of Hamilton. His aggressive rapping is supported by the extreme noise-inspired beats of producers Jonathan Snipes and William Hutson.

Splendor and Misery (named for an unfinished Samuel Delaney novel) tells the story of an uprising on a space-slaveship that leaves behind a single survivor, Cargo 2331. With nowhere to navigate, he hurtles through the universe alone, saved from complete madness by half-remembered rap verses, old spirituals, and his relationship with the ship’s onboard A.I. Highlights from the space odyssey include the gospel hymns “Long Way Away” (A6) and “Story 5” (B5), the stunning reworking of a traditional slave song on “True Believer” (A8), and the violent climax “Baby Don’t Sleep” (B6). Blasts of noise, stirring spirituals, secret ciphers, hidden codes, modern references, and ancient myths are all threads in the tragic story, a struggle for freedom that transcends genre, time, and space.

FCCs: B2 B4 B6 B7

you heard it 12 times on kfjc! most recently:
  • today, Mr Slippy played Story 5
  • today, Mind Surfer played Baby Don't Sleep
  • 2 days ago, Naysayer played All Black
  • 6 days ago, Avakhov played a Better Place
  • 7 days ago, Mickey Slim played True Believer
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