Album Review: Skrillex – Recess

EDM powerhouse Skrillex recently released his debut full length album Recess, through a mobile app for a limited time before releasing it online everywhere. Sonny Moore has a long musical history and his time as a dub step artist has been both loved and hated by music fans around the globe. To everyone from the people who rave at his shows to the people who comment on how he’s tainting a genre, Skrillex had one thing to say about his music via Rolling Stone:

“Dance music is for fun, It’s not something to f***ing raise an eyebrow at. Stop taking yourself so seriously. People who stereotype genres, who say, ‘If you’re into this, you’re this kind of person’ – it’s almost racist. . . . You’re an artist – you might as well give something good.”

Whether you like the music Moore makes or not, you have to appreciate his honest feeling that he is trying to create something good and fun for his fans. In addition, if you give Recess a chance you’ll find that he is making strides forward and branching out as an electronic artist.

There are still the crazy and overdone numbers, like album-opener “All Is Fair And Love and Brostep,” which are Skrillex’s staple, but every song on the album has its own feel and influence from numerous DJ’s, producers, and rappers. Two songs (including the first) feature The Ragga Twins spitting their loud Jamaican-accented voices over absurd beats and drops. The second song on the album, “Recess,” has a heavy bass line and Fatman Scoop begging you to “Bounce! Would you just bounce!” with it, making it a clear party song. “Coast is Clear” is another bouncing song featuring Chance the Rapper that I can see people absolutely losing their minds to on the dance floor. Explicit and to the point, Chance soulfully belts and shouts over a quick drum beat, some trumpets, and almost continuous electronic buzz.

“Doompy Poomp” is a quirky, bouncy, and experimental song. It has a steady, slow, walking beat with an electronic cringe that makes it kind of haunting, and I think its a standout on the album. That track, and “F*** That” are the two basically instrumental cuts, and they both contain some really creative electronic sounds that are pretty cool to hear. The final song is where Skrillex at last takes a place to slow down and share some revealing lyrics: “Take me with you when you go / Don’t leave me out here on my own / Fire Away / F*** this place that we call home,” then transitions into a still-soft trance beat that slowly gets more ambient until it fades out.

In summary, take Skrillex’s word for it: if you’re going to listen to his music, treat it as nothing more than a creation made to entertain, be different, and most importantly be fun.

Listen to Recess on Spotify, and get it on iTunes. Skrillex is not coming through Philadelphia on this outing, but check out his tour dates here.

Image via Pitchfork, by Erez Avissar.

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