Kid 606: Kill Sound Before Sound Kills You

Kid 606: Kill Sound Before Sound Kills You

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Album: Kill Sound Before Sound Kills You
Label: Ipecac

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When he rushed the stage with 2000's Down With The Scene, an album whose title marked both defiance and solidarity, Kid 606 stood as a dynamic character in a dance-music scene far from overburdened with dynamic characters. Among stern clinicians staring down their laptops, the Oakland-based antagonist played like a wild upstart, goosing computer music's cut-up potential and redlining the speed meter with tracks that oozed attitude. Kid 606's approach signaled lots of what came in his wake, but his new Kill Sound Before Sound Kills You shows how he's been outrun by much of what he presaged. Densely stacked and feverish in its allusions, the album works as a sort of working history of spastic club music, from rave-era hardcore to jungle to gabba. "The Illness" kicks off in manic mash-up style, running sirens and heaves over breakbeats that spin through an upward spiral. "Who Wah Kill Sound?" follows in similar but more meditative fashion, cycling through ragga samples and dubby spreads. For tracks so hyperactive, they hold together well: The grafted samples sound more like complements than disparate shards, and the beats follow an internal logic even when they spin out of time. But Kill Sound doesn't work as much more than a framing device–it derives too much of its effect from old thrills. At times, Kid 606 holds out more reverence for reference than for the specific referents he uses. Mellow tracks like "If I Had A Happy Place This Would Be It" show his impressive musicality with guitars and synths working around melody and meter. But as a whole, Kill Sound marches through history with boots too big to do more than stomp along.

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