Published Jun 09, 2014clipping. continue to combine musique concrete with gangsta rap, although they get a little more accessible with their sophomore album. CLPPNG contains some extremely catchy hooks, and their experimentation with bounce on tracks like "Work Work," "Tonight" and "Inside Out" results in songs that are almost traditional rap. Still, the noise is in abundance as producers William Hutson and Jonathan Snipes eschew the usual samples and breaks for a more varied and unusual selection of sounds — they're just more subtle, and, besides "Body & Blood," less aggressive.
Their "cover" of John Cage's "Williams Mix" with Tom Erbe is a massive undertaking, although maybe misplaced here, and their transition from "Dream" into "Get Up" is inspired. The ringing bell, white noise and tape hiss of the former fades to 30 seconds of just hiss followed by 20 seconds of silence that ends with a shock to the system when the alarm sound that is pretty much the sole instrument of "Get Up" first kicks in. While the production seems designed for difficult listening, frontman Daveed Diggs pulls the listener in with his vivid storytelling and ability to morph his delivery alongside the beat. The guests may not be as comfortable riding these beats as Diggs, but it's still cool to hear underground legends King T (on the spacey "Summertime") and Three 6 Mafia's Gangsta Boo ("Tonight") take a damn fine stab at it. CLPPNG may be one of the most exciting and electrifying rap albums of the year, but their extension of the Bomb Squad aesthetic is also definitely not for the faint of heart. (Sub Pop)