★ ★ ★ ★
Daveed Diggs’ deadpan, swift delivery melds with excellent production to form an intriguing, often disturbing soundscape on clipping.’s There Existed an Addiction to Blood. Following on from 2018’s Face, their latest effort doubles down on their signature darkness. Wide influences ranging from power electronics to old horror soundtracks contribute to the album’s deliciously grim atmosphere.
‘He Dead’ is backed by a haunting, slowly crescendoing synth as Diggs relates a B-movie-esque chase that takes a sudden dark turn when the villains are revealed as the police – “They like they meat fresh, so just stay alive, young man”. On ‘La Mala Ordina’, Diggs hyper-violent lyricism is buffered by more traditional trap bars from contributors. ‘Attunement’ opens with 30 ear-splitting seconds of harsh noise, unfolding into a beat reminiscent of an alarm going off as Diggs raps in what sounds like the auditory equivalent of a thousand-yard stare.
While the album’s interludes are an attempt to form a cohesive story, they don’t particularly succeed at this and feel slightly forced. ‘Club Down’ sticks out as a low point of the album with its cheesy choruses, but it’s one of only a few missteps across the hour and eight-minute runtime.
Matthew Derwin – Music Editor