Skrillex - Leaving

You guys already know how I feel about Skrillex, the current poster boy for dance music that’s cave-in-your-chest physical rather than let-it-linger cerebral. He gets no shortage of hate from the assembled comments sections of the world for his ferocious and defiant lack of subtlety. So it may interest you to know that Skrillex just dropped a new three-song EP called Leaving and that, except for the last song, it’s all very restrained and prettified. Closing track “Scary Bolly Dub” is a reworking of his own “Scary Monsters And Nice Sprites,” and it’s been part of his DJ sets for a while, so no surprise that it’s as harsh and mechanical as much of his other stuff. But opening track “The Reason” damn near sounds like Burial, as a gang of other critics have already pointed out on Twitter. Listen to all three tracks below, and then just maybe let the YouTube playlist run.

Leaving is out now through Skrillex’s subscription service the Nest.

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Comments (32)
  1. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece. I am sorry Tom for making fun of your post-SXSW Skrillex think piece…

  2. Wow, that first track is actually an interesting risk for him to take. Maybe this is part of the plan and Skrillex is a mole planted by the British.

  3. Gave It A Try. Still Not into Skrillex. ‘Leeaavviinngg’

  4. sounds like Burial rip-off without the beat skills and subtlety. I’m leaving ep now commander.

  5. thought we were moving away from these jokes in 2013?

  6. So is Skrillex trying to sound like Burial the musical equivalent of Zack Snyder trying to be like Terrence Mallick with his new Superman film?

  7. It sounds like a typical future garage tune, it doesn’t sound like Burial at all. I’m a bit amused that so many articles and posts are compelled to name-drop Burial as soon an electronic track has some atmosphere and no 4 on the floor beat.

    This is the most restrained and sensible write-up I’ve read so far. All the buzz is just nonsense. I suppose “Skrillex make pleasant but forgettable garage track” is a dull story compared to “New Skrillex evokkes eponymous UK dubstep jedi Burial!” \

  8. Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see

  9. Who would of ever thought. Surprisingly good. I knew you guys were following his tail for some reason.

  10. I’d never listened to Skrillex until two days ago, trying to avoid all this horseshit where people can’t enjoy an artist due to some irrational bias rooted in that artist’s accessibility and success. So reading this now is interesting. Everyone on here is like, “I’ve listened to Burial, more than one record I think, so I KNOW THE ENTIRE CANON OF DANCE MUSIC, and also Skrillex is a fag.”

    Burial does the same thing as Skrillex. He makes the most accessible version out there of a certain musical genre. Skrillex taps into a much wider genre, aiming for greater MASS appeal; that’s why he blew up with the obviously-dated but insanely potent cultural phenomenon that we Americans now call DUB STEP. So this new EP is more evolved, at first sounds like Burial, then like Lazersword and Danger, and then in the third song more like the other Skrillex songs I heard a couple days ago. Burial pulls influence from more niche and obscure sources and sub-genres, and thus does the same thing on a more finely-focused scale.

    I guess people can’t get into Skrillex or simply repress their emotional response to his music because it’s just all about who gets to the idea first, and about hipsters only liking that which they perceive to be the first. Thing is, that’s all perception, and musical influences can ALWAYS be traced deeper. People judge how contrived something is based on its relation to their knowledge of art history, rather than the intrinsic quality of the piece. That all makes it harder to discern what’s timeless from what’s just kind of cool/hip/trendy.

    To be fair, I get it how people might not like Skrillex for some of his more generic and abrasive “DUB STEP” beats. I personally don’t really like the 3rd track here at all. But I don’t know, I just think people get hung up on all that other shit. They miss or deny something they can connect with just because the “social coolness factor” at some point negatively correlates with an artists’ success. It’s a bullshit mental construct that actually affects how people respond to and evaluate art.

    • Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see

    • I’ve been listening to electronic music since participating in the birth of the Bay Area rave scene in the early nineties. Electronic music is about 70% of what I listen to in general and on any given day. I make an effort to listen to new release electronic music every week. I own thousands of pieces of electronic music on vinyl and cd, and tens of thousands more in digital formats. I own four Burial releases, all on vinyl. I don’t care what anybody else thinks of my opinion, or rather, my opinion is not swayed by what other people think of it. Which should be clear from my comments at Stereogum.

      Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way…

      When I first heard Skrillex I thought it was a joke. When he began to get popular I wrote it off as something would go away, like a rash. I find his music to be incredibly generic, simple and abrasive (in a bad way – abrasive could be good, but in his case, not so much). I don’t find his music contrived, I think it’s crap. The beats are simple and repetitive (not like, ‘the beat in that song is repetitive’, but rather, he uses the same tired ass beats over and over), the melodies are simple to the point of annoyance (like BAD old rave music, the stuff everyone has forgotten), his overuse of the transformer robot noises has absolutely ZERO musicality and, worst of all, the guy wouldn’t know how to mix a song properly to save his life. Everything thing in his tracks is pushed WAY to the front. Like, “Louder is better, bro! Yeah, yeah!” In the end, whether he was influenced by Burial or not, that’s why ‘Leaving’ doesn’t really sound like Burial. Because even in a quite song EVERYTHING is mixed loud to the front. Burial has depth and layers of textures, Skrillex does not.

      • Weirdface, I mainly disagree with most of what you post. Generally speaking, I keep quiet about it. However, when one chooses to just blow up on a “I’ve been listening to music for a really long time, and I’ve got the artifacts to prove it” rant, then I expect them to come with something a bit more nuanced.

        Let’s be honest. If you put the “Leaving” track on a continuum with “Skrillex” at one end and “Burial” at the other, this song would fall closer toward the “Burial” end. Now, I am completely neutral toward Skrillex. I don’t hate his music, but would never choose to purchase or play it for myself. Objectively speaking, some percentage of people like his music. You seem to be confusing subjectivity and criticism (in the journalistic sense). If you have amassed thousands (or tens of thousands) of hours listening to “electronic” tracks, bring something to those of us who haven’t. Your description of Skrillex’s music as “generic, simple, and abrasive” is exactly the way that I would describe my attitude toward Kanye and AnCo. But, of course, millions of others love that shit.

        Having listened to Skrillex, I would argue that you are confusing the “beat” element of his music with other elements (sample, time signatures, rhythm). I don’t believe that he frequently reuses or recycles entire beats. There are many artists whose styles incorporate repetition, and with those we like we tend to embrace these tendencies as a part of their aesthetic. No artist is more “guilty” of this than the aforementioned Burial. But I thoroughly enjoy Burial. Another artist I love even more, who also incorporates an awful lot of similar elements within a given sequence of releases, is Four Tet.

        Having said that “Leaving” as a track sounds more like releases by Burial than previous releases by Skrillex brings me to my next disagreement with your perspective. I don’t believe that Skrillex intentionally “pushes” elements of his tracks to the front. It is clear that a growth area for him is the texture of tracks related to layering elements. His songs tend to sound quite “flat” to me, rather than overly “loud”. The real contrast with an artist like Burial, which can really be heard when listening to a track like “Leaving” aside a track like “Kindred”, is that Burial understands how to saturate a track with layer upon layer of sound elements that really build a depth of listening that rewards repeated listening.

        One might argue that Skrillex is simply lazy, or that he just wants to cash in on the dub step movement. However, one might also argue that he is simply a novice in terms of building tracks, which betrays just how complex and nuanced song craft can be. Perhaps Skrillex is moving in a new direction with his music. Or, perhaps, he is saying (incorrectly), “See, I can do that Burial shit, too, but I choose to make dub step differently.” At any rate, I wouldn’t argue that Skrillex is anywhere near approximate to Burial in terms of song craft or even artistry in general, but I do believe that we can elevate the discourse a bit if we are going to actually talk about the fucker. I would agree with bedangldinskii that there is certainly a gang mentality when it comes to liking or disliking certain artists. The fact that you, weirdface, peppered your commentary with hyperbole and even the word “bro” betrays this tendency, which we all fall victim to from time to time.

        • Asshole, I have a user name. Everything you posted after flippantly tossing off an insult in place of it lost all value to me. Beyond that, most of what you said actually strengthens my argument. And I didn’t ‘blow up’ on anything, the first paragraph in my post was in response to the post above it. It makes perfect sense in that context. Lastly, I’m not confusing anything. I said exactly what you said with several hundred fewer words because people here don’t (often) take the time to read them when you post that much. I did read yours, and from what I gather, we have basically the same opinion of Skrillex. So why the need to pointlessly belittle and degrade my comment? I’m sure you think it makes you look intelligent, but it doesn’t. It just makes you look like a dick. How’s that for nuanced?

          • i think this conversation would be a better place for that “DIDN’T READ LOL” gif.
            Fearghal Breslin, now is your chance!

          • Aaron Cunningham  |   Posted on Jan 7th, 2013 0

            People’s pride in not having read things is a symptom of (most of) the greater problem(s).

          • No, no, that’s actually great. Much improved. You do have a screen name, and I apologize for having not used it. Not a fan of aardvarks, but that is not a good excuse.

            As to not having actually addressed anything that I said, aside from arguing that my comments actually “strengthened” your argument, as opposed to addressing any of them; just let me add two things:

            1.) I disagree that my comments strengthen your argument and that I said exactly what you said;

            2.) when you qualify yourself as an expert, you hold yourself to a bit of a higher standard of commentary. I get that you were responding to a previous poster’s hyperbole, but you shouldn’t have to preface your opinion if you don’t care what other people think about it. One who qualifies himself as an expert shouldn’t need to (and usually doesn’t) resort to simple insult to prove his point.

            I certainly did not “pointlessly” belittle nor degrade your comment. I stated several points which were, to my thinking, neither degrading nor belittling. As to the intelligence argument, I know enough to know that I disagree with most of the comments that you post. I didn’t advertise myself as intelligent. You, in an unnecessary way (according to your own assertion that you don’t care what people think of your opinions) advertised your own intelligence within this context. I’m waiting for the pudding. . .

            Also, Aaron, I agree. And “sean sean” (whatever that is), would it be too much to ask for you to just repost the gif where you think it belongs? Honestly, the abject laziness of this generation is depressing.

          • call me Cerebus, damn you!

  11. Everything thing. Ha! Proofreading is your friend!

  12. Every Skrillex fan : “Where’s the f*cking drop???”

  13. I knew I shouldn’t have come in here.

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