On Death Grips, Endorsement and Story

This is a cut and paste from Pitchfork, with two identical alterations:

“As they hinted earlier tonight, Death Grips‘ new album NO LOVE DEEP WEB, their follow-up to The Money Store, is available to stream and download for free right now. On Twitter, the band said, “The shoe company wouldn’t confirm a release date for NO LOVE DEEP WEB ’till next year sometime,'” followed by, “The shoe company will be hearing the album for the first time with you.”

Death Grips are great. They sound like someone feeding scrap metal into a tree mulcher.

(Exactly the sort of music I think people should be making.)

But their first major-label released album probably sold around 4,000 copies in its first week.

And the label have been legally giving away their work for free for months.

So they were never going to cross over with No Love Deep Web. They’re not being groomed for that.

For all intents and purposes, Death Grips are endorsed by Epic as much as signed to them.

And from this…

The label gets their cache of subcultural cool. This ‘controversy’ advertises them and legitimises them. It draws our attention. If someone asked me two weeks back if Epic were even still a functioning label, I would have shrugged. (You can’t turn over an MP3 and look at the label logo can you?) Now I’m writing about them on my blog.


The band not doubt got themselves paid and got themselves promoted. But most importantly of all, they got themselves inside of a story worth reporting on. It’s everywhere. And as we’re watching the stream of tweets, updates and mentions on our social networks, we’re considering the music.

Who are this band?

Is this real?

What does this album sound like?

Maybe that upcoming tour might be worth seeing?

It’s about as much as anyone can do at the moment.

To be honest, I’m impressed.


2 thoughts on “On Death Grips, Endorsement and Story

  1. I’m amused that so much has been written about this ‘release’. It was plainly obvious from the beginning that they were attempting to game the media. I don’t know why I’m surprised that it worked, either.

    I love their music, too.

    • Andrew, has there be any indication from the band themselves that the whole thing is a stunt within a stunt? Or is that just your (I’d say) correct reading of it? I’ve been watching but I feel like you might have been following this a little more carefully.

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