Deconstructing Death Grips


Our first python programming assignment for Material of Language was to create¬†a composition based on computational manipulation of data. I set out to change a text file of the lyrics of “Spread Eagle Cross the Block” by Death Grips into emojis pertinent to their corresponding word. From there, I planned on exporting the new “emojified” document and try and turn it into an audio file, as I presumed the audio file that would be generated might resemble an instrumental sample of Death Grips’. Instead, I used the same code that I used to “emojify” “Spread Eagle Cross the Block” to “emojify” a text file of the song “Beware”, also by Death Grips. I realized that my “emojify” code would be an opportunity to clearly identify words (and letters) that repeat in the two songs. I found this interesting, as the abrasive sound of Death Grips’ music has inspired a cult following and mythology surrounding their provocative lyrics and the social commentaries the group tries to provide. I wonder, were I to apply this to “emojifying” code to Death Grips’ other songs if there would be other words I would want to add to the “emojifier”, which could elucidate a hidden meaning that other fans have overlooked. After all, musical cryptography
is not unprecedented.

Should I try to observe recurring patterns in Death Grips’ music, there would undoubtedly be more efficient methods to pursue in jupyter notebook. Already, I would look to see if there is some sort of sentiment-analysis-style tool that assigns emojis to dictionary words and could be imported into jupyter notebooks, to save me the time of having to figure out which words may or may not have emoji analogs. I have provided further, less formal, documentation in my python file.