Listen: Metal up your rap

#Murder turns up the intensity of Gangsta rap with latest single.


Gangsta Rap is, to summarise, deathly intense. Each syllable is delivered in tones that ooze confidence and aggression, while the lyrics themselves aren’t typically advised to those of a nervous or conservative disposition. Gangsta is to the rap scene what metal music is to guitar music.

That comparison in mind, it makes sense that #Murder is turning up the intensity of the typical Gangsta sounds by borrowing instrumentation from metal guitar 101 to spit hardcore venom on Murder on 42nd. The track is an unstoppable onslaught of spoken aggression atop cascading layers of distorted metal guitars, creating one of the strangest juxtapositions in modern music. There is no pausing from breath or relenting, #Murder simply goes in for the kill from the moment the track begins.

Yet as intense an example of Gangsta Rap this track is, something doesn’t quite sit right with this brand of ‘Ghetto Metal’ (or Ghettal, if you prefer a portmanteau). There’s a popular line of thinking that dubs metal as the intellect’s music of choice, with subgenres of metal even being created to better please the more scientific and mathematical listeners. So it’s strange that #Murder has used an intelligent cascading metal guitar line as the bed for spitting lyrics that don’t exhibit the highest degree of thought. It’s an interesting contrast, but the success of it is open for debate.

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