Few musicians in any genre can summon the sound of the world crashing down as well as El-P. As co-leader of legendarily abrasive, indie hip-hop trio Company Flow and as producer for Cannibal Ox, he created a singular sound full of gritty textures, grinding metal shrieks, and beats that spew out in concussive fits. Then he did the same for his own solo releases, most notably 2002’s Fantastic Damage. In case his less-than-sunny disposition has eluded anyone, El-P’s first new album in five years cranks up the head-rankling crankiness — “The Full Retard,” his ire-strewn first single, comes across as both heavy and heaving in its sense of wordy purpose.
Fast Fact: After a couple of reunion shows last year, El-P and Company Flow will rage again at Coachella this month.
Released by Gold Dust
Brooklyn’s resident sci-fi boom bap impresario El-P is back with the third installment of hisWeareallgoingtoburninhell series, this one an entirely instrumental affair. It’s hard to think of a more remarkably consistent hip hop producer over the past two decades. From the early lo-fi days of Company Flow to the grimy synth palettes of the now, El-P is an artist with a sound all his own that one can recognize within the first ten seconds of the beat dropping.
Weareallgoingtoburninhellmegamixxx3 is El-P at his weirdest and finest, a dystopian symphony of other-worldly drums, funk horns, and brilliantly-culled samples. “Time Won’t Tell” triumphantly shifts and evolves, creating entirely disparate moods in the span of a three minute track. Each song shows hints of where El-P has been and where he plans on taking things from here on. “Meanstreak (In 3 Parts)” and “Whores: The Movie” would have fit nicely in the seams of I’ll Sleep When You’re Dead. “He Hit Her So She Left” begins with what could be the score to a horror film then builds with maniacal drums and elements of psych-rock into a superbly dark composition.