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Kno Death Is Silent - Official Discussion Thread

This will be the official discussion for Death Is Silent. I’ve let a few friends and fans have the album already, so I’m starting this to allow them to discuss it.

We don’t really do press on releases anymore because I’m not sure how interested I am in paying 3-5k just to have a “blog critic” leak my music 3 months before the release date—I’m mainly interested in what fans and friends have to say anyway, so why not just give them the record directly?

So, word—have at it.

Also: ** SPOILER ALERTS **—don’t read beyond this post if you don’t want to have anything about the record revealed to you…LOL

jealous.
now leaving in fear that things will be revealed before I want them too/until I can hear the album myself

ps agree/support your whole “blog critic” deal. seeing as how it seemed to benefit you guys as far as Strange Journey went with it even charting on Amazon/Itunes charts for a bit.

omggggggggg i am dying to hear this now. anticipation just blew thru the roof.

i can’t get over “i wish i was dead”. not that the whole thing isnt great. but holy fuck. track is on some UNKLE Psyience Fiction, darkest possible bjork, NIN and BSBD songs type shit, i didn’t expect something like that from Kno. i gotta balance myself out and listen to some uplifting silly house music for a while after having it on repeat

amplifya said:UNKLE Psyience Fiction

Funny, there was a guitar part on I think it was “Bloodstain” that I always fucking loved…and Deacon happened to give me the record from the original artist Lavelle/Shadow sampled and I lifted a few things from that vinyl for this album.

This is great news, fuck critics.

“BSBD type shit” eh?

With Kno.
And Tonedeff.
Both rapping.


Yup. This album is gonna be something special ladies and gentlemen.

Yeah im highly anticipating this release, im in much need of a fresh qn5 fix! I have a feeling that by the end of the year i will overdosssssssssssssssssssse haha.

Every time i look at the artwork i hear melodies flowing in the breeze!

I can’t wait for the pre-orders to begin!! But august has really gone by fast, though.. almost through

...Another thought:

People who wanted Kno to drop an instrumental album should be very happy..There’s enough layers, vocal samples, scratches and change ups (at least as many if not more than APOS probably) for you to listen to the instrumentals and have it double more or less like a cohesive “instrumental album” rather than listening to “beats”.

I’m actually stunned how dense/layered/how much time it sounds like it took to make, considering he only announced it less than 6-7 months ago I think.

I’d kill for a copy right now lol.

The preorder date is scribbled in my work diary as ‘DIS today!!!’

Can’t wait.

Here is my review. I’m going to give my own digested review to Kno in the future, but people have been asking me to post my review. This is after about 8 listens front to back. It’s more of a regurgitation of how I felt about it which is what I think is worth for ya’ll to read.

1) Death is Silent

The album begins with narration. This narrator keeps the album in unison. You will hear him throughout the project. I wish he was a bit louder in volume on this track as I really had to listen to hear what he was saying, but contextually I kinda’ liked the lack of intelligibility for thematic reasons regardless if whether Kno intentionally made the narrator ‘silent’ in the mix or not. Along with the narrator he is accompanied by a psychadellic ambient intro that has a robot like noise. A bit “bionic remix” like. The narrator says, “Death is silent. Painless. Wouldn’t have known it happened. You were suddenly standing in front of my body. I tried to speak, but no. I tried to talk to you…but you wouldn’t listen.” THEN BAM.

A bell rings… You hear breakbeat/trip-hop like drums. It’s still the same track. It has gone from psychadellic to eerie though. The eeriness comes froma vocal sample acting as a sound effect in the background. Personally, it sounds like she’s laughing in a creepy child horror film like way. Enter Kno.

Wish Kno was a little louder on this track as far as the mix, but I love his character. The dude’s tone/personality fits the track perfectly (something you’ll realize on every track). Kno begins his first verse of the album by defining death in a multitude of honest and clever ways. He rides a rhyme scheme effortlessly and doesn’t force any of the rhymes to substitute substance for the sake of flow.

Then it goes to the break where my mind gets fucked with. I realize that vocal sample sfx with the girl – she’s not laughing. She’s crying. You simultaneously hear a duet vocal sample singing. Then you hear Andre’s “twice upon a time there was a boy who died, lived happily ever after – but that’s another chapter.” Then the outro.

Everything else cuts out and you hear the girl crying along with probably the lightest sample of the track which is a horn sample which loosens up the sadness a bit. That’s a personal reaction though. Onto the next track – from a crying girl to a song called “If You Cry”. Yeah, in case you forgot if dude knew how to make ALBUMS.

2) If You Cry

It starts with vocal sample, “if you cry…” joined by a piano vocal sample lightly under it playing chords. You have a radiohead like guitar reverb holding note type thing underneath it to. Then a horn sample that’s got a midnight jazzy sexy feel to it comes in. Then a synth pad joins it which is very fitting musically. You’ll be introduced to more synths you’ve ever heard from Kno before on this album. A lot of synths experimented on this project. Great touch. Back to the track.

Natti starts the first verse. Some bars I wish he was a little louder with automation. His verse is sick though. He starts the verse with the piano sample then midverse that horn sample comes in, which is a nice tough as far as sequencing. He talks about emotion and how we view and deal with emotions. Killer verse on how we deal with emotions. The analogies are ill. I’m not gonna’ give too much away but here’s one of many many standout lines: “Solidarity is king, and the heart’s the fool. The jester only in jest, can be left to rule.” His other analogies can easily be your standout. Kno is the next verse.

I realized Kno kinda delivers the same way as Natti rhythmically which is… Soo sick! I don’t know if they planned that out but it’s so ill. He goes off with his analogies. “A fool is the food that our fears ingest so the cool is the fuel that our peers inject.” It’s pretty much your body parts – gearing towards the eyes in the end. Ayooo – what the fuck!? I’ma stop my excitement here. Genius writing. I’m not gonna spoil anything – just enjoy. Natti and Kno for the win.

Then it goes to the break. You have an choir like sample acting as an ambient soundscape with a synth once again in the low end. The juxtaposition between the synth and the vocal sample polarizes great and to me represents a lot thematically when it comes to emotions and staying hard bodied. But… that’s just my interpretation, of the situation.

3) Loneliness

The narrator is back. He talks about perceiving darkness and what creates it. He is accompanied by a beautiful high octave piano with synths sweeping through a pan. You realize Kno does A LOT of panning on this project. Especially with scratches and vocal samples. Back to the song. As the narrator finishes his monologue – ( I WARN KNO FANS THIS BEAT IS GONNA MAKE YOU EARGASM) the beat cuts to arguably the illest bassline Kno has done since Beautiful Girl. And the drums? Clean and tight as fuck. You are bopping your head with that “I wanna fucking punch something in the face” look but at the same time is still bringing a high vocal sample every four bars and you’re like oooooooooweeeeeee.

Kno spits about a girl (lot of tracks are referring to a ‘she’ – good album cover. You got a nice electro piano in during the verse too. This track live is just nuts. Then it goes to that ambient enya thing and then boom hook which is a combination of everything but you got… DEACON on the hook singing. Beautiful. I can’t get too much into Kno’s verse cos I have a lot of figuring out to do.

Then this dude Nemo spits the second verse. Dude is NICE. I think he’s rapping about weed. The break of ambience comes after his verse. In case I wasn’t specific about this part yet. Just think massage music.

4) La Petite Mort (Come Die With Me)

Reverse of piano for like 2-3 sec then bam. I introduce to you one of Kno’s best guitar samples in a while. That says a lot but it just has so much personality. Then the beat drop. This following Loneliness? Good luck making it to track 5 without repeats. Cool bop drums. But you got this light vocal sample breathing in the background which is just nice (to fit the title of the track which means orgasm.) In low end you have some cool bass horn thing. Next the verse.

Kno is talking to a girl again. She sounds suicidal, but so does Kno. I wish Kno was a little louder. They’re fucking metaphorically and literally.
The vocal sample in the hook is easily the most emotional thing Kno has done with a vocal sample – “Come Die With Me” – I mean it’s that simple. In the hook you also have birds in the background chirping.

Verse two – Another strong verse. Shit I can’t honestly write on this track lyrically cos’ I’m still trying to really digest it. (Had to confirm with Kno and there’s cathartic stuff with a bunch of exes, oh you’ll like these verses. He shared more but it’s better if you figure it out yourself) Mid-verse Kno brings in another cool vocal thing in the end that most of you will probably barely hear on first listen. It sounds like what Tone would if he did a hum. It’s reversed though I believe. Then it goes to the break where the bird chirps are more clear and the vocal sample repeats her line and then this pizzicato gets louder and louder and you’re just like oooooooooh shiiiiiet clay davis style. You got a panning of a vocal sample going back and forth. Then this Spanish guitar comes in which is nice. Then it ends with an audio clip talking about things in life and then comparing it to death. Kanye – “If we died in each other’s arms, still get laid in the afterlife.” Not gonna spoil but nice transition to next track.

5) Rhythm of the Rain

Mood right away changes a bit. Starts with a guitar sample that’s got the vibe of “Don’t Leave Me”. Then it’s joined by a vocal sample. Then this Spanish guitar picking comes in and it gets all western like.

Thee Tom Hardy is the first verse. He raps about dealing with depression. Tight verse. Won’t spoil anything.

Tunji is the next verse. Reflective verse as well with dealing with stuff. Refuse to spoil anything.

Kno’s verse. Now this is where I’m going to sound very hypocritical. Best Kno verse in my opinion EVER. You’d think I wouldn’t spoil but sorry this is the best metaphor I’ve heard in a verse in a while and probably the best one to come out of the QN5 camp. Man, maybe it is the best one I’ve ever heard before. It’s one metaphor and he fucking owns it. I’d quote but it would ruin it. I’m just warning you – this would make poets throw their guns in the air. Can’t wait for everyone to talk about this verse.

Outro is tight too. The tempo slows and then strings are joined with a club like synth.

6) Spread Your Wings

2 Vocal samples begin. A lead and then a background harmonizing a hum like execution. Then it goes to the beat. Deacon goes in.

Deacon’s verse – Emotional and witty as hell. To me it’s about his next step and future as a member of cunninlynguists. Taking that next step. I’ll spoil a bit since I’ve been holding back – “with her on my team, I’m feeling like a King, Finding comfort in the Heat, and we just want a couple of rings.”

Kno’s verse – Cool flow and delivery. According to Kno there’s an “abortion/aborted relationship metaphor going on.” It’s ill – have fun digesting, though my guess it’ll take a while before you bother with this verse considering what he gives you on the previous track.

7) Smile

This is an instrumental. Starts with a vocal sample. Joined then by break beat/dj shadow like drums. Vocal sample in high frequency then comes with electric rock guitar. Piano chord riff then comes. Piano note riff joins to a grunge guitar and then an electric guitar. There’s once again a blend of dirty and pretty which is a theme throughout the album. The narrator comes back. Once again I wish he was louder, but I’ve spoken on that. He is joined by a synth. It ends with a similar percussive note attack as the beginning of the next track.

8 ) Graveyard

That fast percussive like attack is a flute vocal sample. It is joined by a vocal sample and a low violin. Then you hear Kno speed up that flute vocal sample and it drives with a Ratatat-like grimey synth. LOOOOOOOK OUT!!! You knew he had to spit battle raps to this. This is when you want the audience all going nuts together with their hands in the air.

Kno – Battle raps. That simple, except their Kno’s style. His personality when talking shit. You’ll get it when you hear it. You gotta respect battle raps when their original to the person and he ain’t biting a style. I’ll give you one gem – “I’m that dude, Todd Palin.. I get dumb pussy.” Then Shiesty is on the hook and you hear a bit of Deacon in the end of the hook.

It then ends with that grimey synth riding out and doing it’s thing. You have a vocal sample singing, “all at once I stepped out of a dream. The music in my ears…That body, it was me.” It ends with a guitar sample and that flute sample in the beginning.

9) I Wish I Was Dead

Starts with a grimey synth again. The synth melody may be real familiar to some of you. You hear Tonedeff humming in the hook accompanying a vocal sample singing “Wish I was dying.” Song feels like there’s a cloud over you. The drum is real crisp. You have a cool guitar thing goin on as well. Kno also singing on the hook, “feels like I’m dying.”

Tonedeff is the first verse – The rhyme scheme is ridiculous. Just keeps going and then it goes faster in double time. So much here. He is in character and is delivering differently for the sake of this track. Love it. I’ll wait for the lyrics. The story he tells is sad and very real for anyone who has been following him for a minute. He’s now letting you even more into what goes on in his head. Then Kno…
In my humble opinion, this Kno verse makes his verse on “Things I Dream” sound like a happy song. Of course that statement is hyperbolic but my first impression was that they’re both very similar. Things I Dream has more anger in it and drive cos the type of beat and character he plays in it, but the feeling you get after both verses are done – well… This one just resonates WAY more. My explanation would be the spoiler.

Outro has scratches and singing by Tone and the vocal sample. “Wishing for dead if today is like tomorrow.” Also more singing from another vocal sample. End has a nine inch nails like feel with the effects.

10) They Told Me

This beat makes you want to exhale calmly on some summer night escapism shit on the most chill place you can envision in your head. To me this beat summarizes the vibe of the album. It’s like Enya vocal vibe meets Moby synth vibe. Then you get this ridiculous horn vibe. The west coast potheads will light to this every midnight they get in above 65 degree weather. The beat is as dreamy as you get.

Wish Kno and Deacon were a little louder on this track. Not gonna spoil what’s going on in the verses because I already feel guilty for giving enough in the above tracks.

The outro comes out of nowhere. A new vocal sample comes out of nowhere with a same dreamy like synth. Nice touch.

11) When I Was Young

Vocal sample starts with a Mariachi like horn sample. But its still in the dreamy synth theme. Scratching also included.

Natti spits about his childhood. Reflective verse. Dope.

Kno – Delivery-wise this will prolly be one of the most liked verses. He leaves the character personality he’s done on most of the verses because it fits this verse. This is more the Kno you’re used to. “Didn’t know my father, At least not sober.”

Substantial – Great hearing him on this track. Spits about his life leading up to his rap career really getting going. Dope.

12) Not At The End

Piano/Organ/Vocal sample to stop. Real cool. The vocal sample reminds me of MJ. Real nice melody. This song is pretty. Kno sings on this. Sounds like Em but not as whiny.

Kno – Talking about taking life slow. Really living it to the fullest. “Tell mother nature blow in the wind and choke on my kids.” Zing.

13) The New Day

Instrumental. Starts with an asian string sample. Then a break beat like drum pattern comes in. Low end you got a cello and in high end you got a violin. Then scratching comes in with a killer Kno signature vocal sample. Scratching, “One life to live, gotta live it a day at a time.” The narrator comes back.

The ending really sums up the album. Appreciate life one day at a time. Live it with volume, then maybe death won’t be silent. Narrator ends the album with “Death has no meaning.”

My opinion on this album isn’t fixed. It’s not how we listen to music. You shouldn’t be listening to music through memory, it makes your ears secondary. Point is – what this album means to me will change from tomorrow, to next week, to years from now. It depends where my life is. The listener always brings a lot to the music. You will also interpret this album differently because it’s so honest and real. We have learned more about Kno on this project than his past projects combined. Some of you may not like his delivery choice on some tracks as he’s in character, but then you’re missing the point. Please listen to the lyrics and take your time with it. The dude is pouring his soul out.

Musically, Kno introduces his ear for synths. Combining samples with synth and creating a dreamy, break beat like project has made a great marriage with the topic of the project. It’s mature, yet it has its fun moments but for the most part it requires your favorite headphones and attentiveness. For me, it feels reviewing this because I’ve been thinking ‘what’s the fucking point?’ People care about honest music? Value and appreciation is seldom. Should I care about sharing what I think about this project and more importantly how could Kno even care about what we think after an album like this? Maybe it’s hope? Maybe this is the first in many steps in breaking the silence.

I’m skimming through posts.. cuz I don’t want to spoil too much.. aaaaand I cannot fucking wait for this to be in my headphones.

houstonz said:I’m skimming through posts.. cuz I don’t want to spoil too much.. aaaaand I cannot fucking wait for this to be in my headphones.

^ This

x10

houstonz said:I’m skimming through posts.. cuz I don’t want to spoil too much.. aaaaand I cannot fucking wait for this to be in my headphones.

Yeah…I’m actually sad I read more than like 5 lines from Kags post. I can’t wait to listen to this album. I think I’m done coming into this thread until sometime in October.

Excited for you all.

Read all of Kags’ review.. sounds fucking awesome.

So soon.. but still so long to wait… :/

BTW, I thought Kno said Tunji was on it twice?

^ He is. Also at Not At The End. But at that point I was tired of spoiling and I knew if I spoke about him I’d mention his verse.

hahaha.. I don’t mind knowing all the features.

Holy shit, judging from Kags in-depth analysis, this album is going to be fucking incredible.

This part really has me anxious…

“Tonedeff is the first verse – The rhyme scheme is ridiculous. Just keeps going and then it goes faster in double time. So much here. He is in character and is delivering differently for the sake of this track. Love it. I’ll wait for the lyrics. The story he tells is sad and very real for anyone who has been following him for a minute. He’s now letting you even more into what goes on in his head. “

Obviously, I’m a big “Tone-head,” but this is why I love Tone’s music-his impeccable storytelling. Kno, I’m soo excited for you man! I don’t know what I want to hear more now…Death is Silent or Chico and The Man. Congrats Kno!

Yeah I skimmed through Kags review. I cant wait, I think its gonna have to get an iTunes download while i wait for preorders to arrive.

I didn’t think my excitement level for this album could get any higher until I kags review. Damn you kags.

Kags said:Kno’s verse. Now this is where I’m going to sound very hypocritical. Best Kno verse in my opinion EVER. You’d think I wouldn’t spoil but sorry this is the best metaphor I’ve heard in a verse in a while and probably the best one to come out of the QN5 camp. Man, maybe it is the best one I’ve ever heard before. It’s one metaphor and he fucking owns it. I’d quote but it would ruin it. I’m just warning you – this would make poets throw their guns in the air. Can’t wait for everyone to talk about this verse.

wow, cannot wait to hear this verse..!!!!!!

^ Now that’s the proper reaction! The rest shouldn’t hate - if it’s any solace it definitely feels more like a fall album than a summer album - so maybe that’ll offer a better first listen? But yeah, jealousy is definitely NOT silent Smile

how about allowing peeps in the graduate lounge to get early access if we pay more than retail price? C’mon u know we have no patience

I’m a patient man but this is killing me.

Kno, I’ll paypal you $100 US right now for a zip file!

Kags said:if it’s any solace it definitely feels more like a fall album than a summer album

Yeah, I was thinking of saying this. On headphones outside during the winter at night, to me that’s when it’ll be the best. It’s amazing but it’s definitely not a summer album. I listened to it at least 6-7 times already, I’m gonna try my best not to play it too much more before then.

Incaspic said:I’m a patient man but this is killing me.

Kno, I’ll paypal you $100 US right now for a zip file!

id be willing to do the same

with a promise to purchase the physical copy

guys it worth the 100 dollars^^ simply amazing! cant wait for a fall day in oct/nov to ride to this album. its a work of art. and to be honest i wish i could be more critical, cause i have known kno long enough and wish i could offer some constructive criticism but this is the peace that is going to make everybody realize just how talented he is.. no homo. what ever i can do to help with success of this release just let me know. favorite track currently “loneliness” the drums, will be discussed for, well, ever!

from an Aim conversation with Kags (Sorry Kags.. I had to do it)

DeaconTheVillain 2:40 am
Kno is the most trunk tight person i’ve ever known…
DeaconTheVillain 2:41 am
the fact that he’ll send ANYBODY his album before it drops… that’s crazy
kags627 2:41 am
i got home from work
saw the e-mail, kinda blushed
DeaconTheVillain 2:41 am
LOL
that’s hilariious
i listerally laughed out loud
kags627 2:41 am
and he doesn’t seem like a dude who makes many accidents with computers
hahaha
man, i wont front like i palyed it cool - i saw that shit on my screen and did one of those internal celebrations where u then check if anyone else is in the room
Kno, my favorite producer, sending ME his project for feedback? Come on…
Like I’m supposed to just double click all cool and just start listening
DeaconTheVillain 2:43 am
that’s hilarious
kags627 2:43 am
yeah, i was like ron artest after winning
but that’s between me and u - in front of kno ill jsut be like, “yeah man. thanks.” hahaha
DeaconTheVillain 2:44 am
i’m sorry man. that shit made me tear up it was so funnny. LOL. that’s real shit though. 4real. that’s why he sent it, because you’d appreciate it.
DeaconTheVillain 2:45 am
man, i wanna post this whole conversation on the boards.. that shit’s classic.
that shit was just so perfectly honest
kags627 2:47 am
they’re gonna give me a huge PAUSE for ‘internal celebration’
kags627 2:47 am
its impossible to be honest without sounding gay
especially on QN5 boards
but it’ll be funny

@deacthesneak

and for my two cents… Death is Silent is the shit and the toilet paper. I know I’m ‘spose to say that, but it really is. It’s the first time I get to be a total fan on a CL related project (Outside of my few features) and Kno delivered. He even impressed me by doing some things as an emcee I’ve never heard from him plus giving me some of that punchline rap that we all love from Kno. The beats are shear craziness. He even sang on a hook! which i’ve tried to get him to do for years… and not on some David Bowie joke shit like on “Mexico” but for real. Kno can sing. LOL. Who’d a thunk it?

@deacthesneak