13 & God

13 & God is a collaboration between Germany’s long-in-tooth electronic punks Notwist and California’s underground hip-hop heads Themselves. What? Yeah, wrap your mind around that headfuck. Notwist contribute captivating laptop pop while Themselves seep synthesized android-rap into the tracks. The former’s whimsy and the latter’s inventive drum claps mesh together to form something. But problems arise early in the album, and there’s a shortage of congruity. Two standout tracks — “Men of Station” and “Perfect Speed” — feature little from Themselves and could’ve easily found a home on Notwists’ 2002 release, Neon Golden. “If” is hopeful; it features vocalists from both groups — the drawback is the tune sounds like two unrelated tracks stuck together with the bass line as glue. The song is the closest thing to perfection on this hit-and-miss disc. While the collaboration is imaginative, it lacks the organic nature of true rap — making this mishmash of opposite worlds essentially meaningless.

 

Appears Thursday, Sept. 22, at the Magic Stick, 4120 Woodward, Detroit; 313-833-9700. With Boy in Static, Notwist and Themselves.

Dustin Walsh writes about music for Metro Times. Send comments to [email protected].

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