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N.E.R.D 1000 gets 7/10

N.E.R.D
1000 ft. Future
Columbia

7/10

After a lengthy 7-year intermission, funkadelic trio N.E.R.D are back and with some goodies to boot. Ahead of the December 15 release of new album, NO_ONE EVER REALLY DIES (which is what N.E.R.D stands for, incidentally) they’ve been dropping a breadcrumb trail of singles, each more frantic than the last. The latest taste, 1000, is a chaotic explosion of sound that works in all the right ways. Mostly. It’s an interesting sound that’ll have you hanging to see what the rest of the album brings.

It’s still a N.E.R.D tune through and through, but different to their back catalogue. There’s a lot going on and it can’t really be classified to one genre, but familiar fans will understand and probably dig that about it. It’s dominated by a monstrous bassline that’s layered with trippy, poppy samples, synths and beats.

Add to that subtle yet jolting lyrics that seem to tie the chaos together from N.E.R.D’s Pharrell Williams and Shay Harley, plus a featre from Atlanta rapper, Future. It’s a chaotic mix-match of sounds that, when thrown together, create a pretty wicked experience. To quote Pharrell’s lyrics: “Holy shit it’s working”. Although Future adds a crispy layer, those saturated auto-tuned vocals he’s known for prevalent use of, tend towards annoying and could have been done without. Auto-tune has a time and place, and a limit, but this didn’t really feel like it for either.

It’s not hard to dig N.E.R.D and Pharrell’s signature experimental style, often transcending genre boundaries to produce familiar, yet still completely different sounding music. 1000 is no different. Despite the auto-tune annoyance, it doesn’t deter from the overall chaos of the song that makes it so fun to listen to; an infectious, energetic, beat filled banger that’ll undoubtedly get you moving. The clubs are where 1000 will probably have the biggest impact, and there’s little doubt it will frequent the circuit.

RYAN ELLIS

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