Rizzla - "Iron Cages / Twitch Queen" (Singles Going Steady)

Photo: Elvin Talvarez

Two beasts fused together to make a Mega-Godzilla of a dance track.

Timothy Gabriele: Two beasts fused together to make a Mega-Godzilla of a dance track. The first, the kind of psychotic pop/R&B perversion I had hoped to hear in Kelela’s outings with various Night Slugs and Fade to Mind artists. The second, an exemplar of the movers in a saturated, but masterful mini-genre that I’ve come to call Foley Grime, taking the Dolby FX of spectacle film trailers and turning them into deformed hybrid mechanical monsters of menacing riddim. The video fetishizes resistance to authority and political violence to an uncomfortable degree, unclear if it wants histrionic fodder for to match its dynamic sonics or if really does “want to corrupt you tonight” as the vocal sample buried beneath the acidic processing of “Twitch Queen” beckons. Compelling, entertaining, and begging for that rewind. [9/10]

Steve Horowitz: Oy, everything is hazy. The earth is so far away. Now it’s too close. It’s on fire. What the hey? It’s all just fun and games, like that rocket in my pocket. This is the music of destruction. It’s jarringly effective at getting attention, but like the video that goes with it, there doesn’t seem much point to it all other than to disturb. Maybe we all need to wake up. That’s a valid assumption. But living is more than dying hard. The music may shake us but what we do after twitching is left unresolved. [5/10]

Kevin Korber: For all of its frenetic pace, there’s a weariness to these two Rizzla tracks that I’m quite drawn to. “Iron Cages” lures you in with a seductive power before “Twitch Queen” assaults your senses, acting as the aural equivalent of an epileptic fit. The accompanying video makes Rizzla’s dissatisfaction with the outside world quite clear, but there’s more to it than that. For him, it’s not just that the world is shit; it’s also that we’re too busy partying to change it. [7/10]

Ed Whitelock: Stealing the riff from the Space Jam Theme and playing it over global scenes of violence and disorder is clever, I guess. [3/10]

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