Sometimes you hear a track that is so thrillingly euphoric you don't know how to react. Occasionally you hear a track that is so gloriously bleak and dissonant that by the time it finishes you feel cleansed. Like a Bill Hicks set, so real and extreme that whether you want to or not, by the end of it you have purged yourself. Welcome to the natural habitat of Clipping.
You may not believe me, but this is hip hop in its traditional form. Traditional to way back when hip hop came from the streets and terrified the mainstream. Presenting a reflection of a world in which they had no reference points, a world that they could not understand and actively tried to avoid in real life. Before it was bought out and neutralised, sold for spinning rims and rocks and chains and money. There was once a time when hip hop made a difference, when it was fresh, when it helped its purveyors out of the situations they described and scared the hell out of everyone it didn't. Before things were swag. Before things were trill. Hip hop provoked a reaction. It was truly incendiary.
Clipping seem to be the logical progression from the Dalek, Death Grips and Shabazz Palaces' stream of consciousness. Two guys making rhythmical Tim Hecker style noise made into perfect swelling waves of cerebral hip hop. I challenge you to listen to 'guns.up' and not want to throw your skinny fists skywards when Daveed Diggs says "Throw your guns up, throw your guns up." The startling euphoria following that moment still has my heart racing. The louder you listen to this, the better it sounds, the more effect it has. The speed and quality of his vocal delivery really makes this track what it is. Building a natural crescendo through the noise with increasingly urgent bars. It's an impressive technique, truly unlike anything I have heard, and totally worth your time.
'guns.out' is taken from the album midcity which is available to download for free at the bands website (but you should choose to pay if it moves you, it's the decent thing to do) I am pleased to confirm that the record is the most excited thing to take complete control of my brain since Death Grips Money Store dropped last year. If from time to time you need to immerse yourself completely into something a little different and challenging then Clipping are a band that you should definitely explore.