The latest album from Long Beach producer Burnin Giraph is an impressively expansive medley of soundscapes, acid jazz, and instant head-bobbing grooves you’d expect to hear under an Adult Swim bump. Giraph is locked in. Each drum, trill, choir chant, and high hat fit into what sounds like a rotating museum of sounds. The low-tempo groove tracks are far more lived-in than the usual beats you use to “study to.” “PEACEKEEPER,” the title track, is soaring. Driving drums, guitar riffs, and rich strings echo the works of Nobuo Uematsu and his infamous Battle Theme.
The album isn’t without experimentation. Tracks like “All This Shit” & “Giraph, Giraph!” are more abstract in nature. The most ‘mainstream’ sounding song is a feel-good-funky jam called “What Makes You,” featuring vocals from Qari. The song is a roller-rink jam. The other vocalist on the album is the smokey-voiced Reaper Mook. Mook raps over an eerie sample loop with minimum drums. The high pitch church organ instills visions of funeral processions or Dracula waking from his bed. Mook’s verse rarely catches the beat, making the song a kind of spoken word interlude.
“Peacekeeper” is its own world with its own countries and cities and towns. Each track takes you on a completely different journey than the one previous; sometimes, the track changes direction before it ends. Each song is lived in and fully evolved and has valleys and peaks. Giraph hasn’t lost a step as far as production and has gotten even better at creating a world you wouldn’t mind staying in.
Listen to the album here.