Splendor & Misery

clipping. - Splendor & Misery
Critic Score
Based on 14 reviews
2016 Ratings: #362 / 758
User Score
Based on 169 ratings
2016 Ratings: #185
September 9, 2016 / Release Date
LP / Format
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Loud and Quiet
‘Splendor & Misery’ is no prog indulgence, and doesn’t come with A Message, a shoehorned “plot” or a shred of ponderous pomposity.Instead, it’s a magnificent, nerve-jangling and altogether rather riveting blast of unflinching white noise and throb, virtuoso rapping and, most improbable of all, richly romantic gospel-choir interludes.

Devastating yet optimistic, Splendor & Misery is a stunning leap forward for clipping., and one of the most impressive albums of the year.

Northern Transmissions

Splendor & Misery is sincere and staunchly ambitious. With it, clipping. Have solidified their position at the forefront of experimental music.

Under The Radar

On Splendour & Misery, the creative scope of clipping. yet again expands, dreaming up a dystopian narrative in which a computer falls in love with a sole survivor of a slave uprising.

Cinematic in its scope, the album runs like a screenplay with character developments, recurring themes, tragedy and, finally, resolve.
The Skinny

Suffocating, stressful, and challenging, Splendor & Misery is uncompromising in its desolation, and it’s all the better for it.

The Needle Drop
The experimental hip hop trio clipping. returns with an intriguing concept album.

While at times this all can feel a bit too robotic, the narrative is broken up by brief interludes that feature more noise, more of Diggs' raps and passages of sung spirituals.


It’s the high-concept eclecticism, however, that makes this record so cumbersome. Amidst unprecedented stylistic leaps and machine-gun rapping, comprehending the meaning of Splendor & Misery is a true challenge.

Pretty Much Amazing

Splendor and Misery doesn’t do much to resuscitate the bygone art that is the space opera concept album, despite the sincerest efforts of all involved. That said, it’s not a bad album, and when it hits its mark, it hits hard.

The Line of Best Fit

Frankly, a rap space opera shouldn't work this well, and it's a testament to the trio's vision that it does, even if Splendor & Misery can be a pretty turbulent voyage.


It’s possible to create compelling hip-hop instrumentals from shards of noise—just look at Food for Animals and Death Grips or clipping.’s previous work—but on Splendor & Misery, clipping. often prize well-placed sound effects over songcraft. In its drive for conceptual rigor, the album neglects to engage the listener musically.

Drowned in Sound
The problem with clipping. is that they sometimes seem to have an unusual idea of what makes good hip-hop. Sometimes it feels like the purely hip-hop side-project of a dodgy rap-metal group circa 2003.
I spent like an entire day doing nothing but listening to this album, idk something just came over me this album was just consuming me, I just found it to be a really interesting listen. Front to back this thing has your attention, it's imo one of the most engaging albums of 2016. I had a ton of fun dissecting the ongoing story in the lyrics of the space traveller/survivor and the mothership A.I, I thought it was super unique and told really well by Daveed Diggs.

The production here is as ... read more
Daveed’s major role in “Hamilton” obviously inspired him to take a cinematic approach to this album while also keeping clipping.’s signature sound intact. That’s why “Splendor & Misery” works extremely well. The sci-fi concept is intriguing, the lyrics and flows are great and the production is as unique and experimental as ever.

Fav Tracks: Air ‘Em Out, True Believer, A Better Place, Break The Glass, All Black, Baby Don’t Sleep, Wake ... read more
An insanely well made experimental concept album that never lets you go. This is the trio at their best, and it's criminal how under appreciated it is. The flow is unbreakable and their attention to detail and style is unmatched, making this listening experience incredibly layered and awe-inspiring.

BEST TRACKS: (all of them)
brooooo i should've checked these guys out earlier

i've become a sucker for industrial/abstract hip hop and clipping is no exception. great stuff, will be checking out their other albums
While not as loud or abrasive as previous efforts, clipping. continues to develop their already intriguing sound, all while keeping it in a strange sci-fi tale of slavery, artificial intelligence and false gods. An intriguing record to say the very lest.

Favorite jams: Air Em Out, Break The Glass, A Better Place

Lest Favorite: Interlude 02 (Numbers)
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Track List

  1. Long Way Away (Intro)
  2. The Breach
  3. All Black
  4. Interlude 01 (Freestyle)
  5. Wake Up
  6. Long Way Away
  7. Interlude 02 (Numbers)
  8. True Believer
  9. Long Way Away (Instrumental)
  10. Air 'Em Out
  11. Interlude 03 (Freestyle)
  12. Break the Glass
  13. Story 5
  14. Baby Don't Sleep
  15. A Better Place
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Added on: July 27, 2016