South Laughfrica

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The Spectrum

Artist: Die Antwoord

Album Title: $O$

Label: Interscope Records

Release Date: October 12

Grade: D-

Did College Humor release some sort of spoof video of neo-Nazi kids? Did The Hills Have Eyes franchise try to release a musical in which the Salvation Army provided the costumes? Die Antwoord's latest album is quite possibly a pungently tacky and disturbing mix of the two.

South Africa has the burden and responsibility of claiming the relatively new rap group, Die Antwoord, as their own.

The album, $0$, features a blend of cheesy and weird attempts at beats crafted by DJ Hi-Tek (not the same Hi-Tek known for his work with Talib Kweli) and so-bad-they're-hysterical rap lines spewed from the front man, infamously named Ninja. Not to be forgotten is the extremely creepy auto-tuned voice of their female backup vocalist, who goes by the name of Yo-Landi Vi$$er.

This strange lot proudly reps being part of a new South African local musical and lifestyle movement called "Zef," which is interesting, to say the least.

This album is actually a semi re-release of their self-released version of $O$. While some songs on the original mix made it to the major label debut, there are a handful of new ones.

The re-release comes after they somehow got signed to a major label – Interscope Records.

Their songs boast of Ninja's bad-boy lifestyle of guns and getting his anorexic, pasty-white body tattooed with tough guy sayings. They also explain that Yo-Landi wants him to be her samurai.

One song, called "Wat Kyk Jy," which means, "What are you looking at," aggressively insults listeners for looking at Ninja the wrong way.

"Zef Side" is another song that aims to look into the South African subculture, but only makes it look stranger than it already seems.

The only bright spot of the album is the track "Fish Paste," which is the only song on the album that isn't an assault on the word "music."

Die Antwoord is true evidence that if you are wacky and ambitious enough, you just might make it.