By Clara Tsac
In their newest release, “All Hands,” Minneapolis-based hip-hop collective Doomtree riles up listeners with dark synth beats and abstract societal allusions. All Hands is a biting amalgam of layered metaphors delivered over intense electro-punk instrumentals and head-nod-worthy hooks. As a group, Doomtree’s combined energy is almost more persuasive than their lyrics. At times, their voices almost seem to blend into each other, losing Dessa’s smooth venom or Cecil’s lyrical fire to collective turmoil. In a way, however, this is what they do. A celebration of hardcore vibes, the disorienting scratches, shrieks, and metal-inspired drum beats firmly establish the sense of bottled chaos.
As a group whose music approaches the world with a middle finger up, they do the best with fight songs like “Grey Duck,” “.38 Airweight,” and “80 on 80.” “Grey Duck” itself is a nod to their hometown; in Minnesota, the goose from traditional children’s game “duck-duck-goose” is called the grey duck.
The album was written in an area with no cell phone reception, which translates to the music. “All Hands” creates a total disconnect from the universe. For one hour, you can raise your fist to the man in the angsty, explosive world of Doomtree.