Massive Attack / Young Fathers - "Voodoo in My Blood"

by PopMatters Staff

29 February 2016

"Voodoo in My Blood" is a trip-hop New Orleans funeral parade with the casket open, brimming with incantatory rhymes and death-hymn melodies.

Pryor Stroud: What color is blood beneath the skin? What sounds would it make if instead of just passing through your vasculature uninterrupted, it ebbed and flowed, rushed and maddeningly coagulated according to the vicissitudes occurring on the flip side of your epidermis? “Voodoo in My Blood”, part three of Massive Attack’s four part EP Ritual Spirit, asks these questions and leaves them open-ended. It’s a trip-hop New Orleans funeral parade with the casket open, brimming with incantatory rhymes and death-hymn melodies. By the end your blood is boiling, not because you’re angry or irritated, but because, for once, you can feel what’s coursing through your veins, its materiality and behavior. You remember your body but, then, dishearteningly, you realize that this remembrance won’t always be around for you to feel. [8/10]

Chris Ingalls: This is one of those trance dance songs that contains some good ideas but it doesn’t really seem to go anywhere. I like the menacing, gloomy vibe, but it works better as some sort of between-song interlude than a full song. I’m interested to hear the rest of the EP, because this isn’t a total loss. [6/10]

Emmanuel Elone: Massive Attack and Young Fathers came through with one horrific, scariest electronic song. The beat and vocals are there, but more emotion and tension come from what isn’t being heard. Deep, warped synth noises, maniacal laughter, and purposefully enigmatic lyrics come together to create the musical equivalent of a Stephen King book. It’s inhumane, barbaric, and awesome all at the same time. [7/10]

Chad Miller: Young Fathers’ contribution is notable, but overall the song seems like it just stays in the same place. And while this place is nice, it isn’t enough. [6/10]

SCORE: 6.75

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