Peeps is a rapper/producer who is part of Australian hip-hop group Gravity Ponds. “Waiting to Die” was released alongside fellow Gravity Ponds member Remz’ “Consequence & Chaos.” While Peeps shares Remz’s aggro persona, his rhymes are more introspective than his partner in crime. Where Remz traded mostly on brute strength, Peeps is a more wiry rapper, spitting his lines like a deranged hyena.
The liner notes say that this EP was recorded during a big change in Peeps’ life. Judging from lines like “I don’t want to be near her/Don’t say her name again,” that big change involved a messy breakup. “Who the fuck am I? I don’t know no more/They say happiness is wealth then I feel so poor” he complains on the title track, while he lays out how hopeless and suicidal he is.
He gets unhinged on “Perfectly Sane,” bragging about murdering people and stuffing their dead bodies in his septic tank. “Did I offend you?,” he asks, “I meant to.” He teams up with Tornts and Vampts for the equally murderous “Burn It Down.” Vents and Remz assist him on “The Razz.” He ends the album with the confessional “168 Hours.”
Production is supplied by Vampts, who gets some help from Woz on “The Razz.” Where Remz’s EP was heavily influenced by 90s East Coast hip-hop, the beats here go in a more dramatic direction. “Waiting to Die” is backed by wailing guitars; “Perfectly Sane” has a piano flourish which provides a nice contrast to the psycho rhymes; “168 Hours” has melodramatic piano and female vocals providing the backdrop. Only “The Razz” has a throwback beat, with heavy, jazzy drums and a throbbing bassline. It’s the best track on the album by far, largely because it’s the least serious. Peeps is still rapping about being damaged and filling his body with controlled substances, but he’s not nearly as self serious as on the rest of the EP. Instead the track is three friends talking shit and bragging about how fucked up they like to get. It’s a nice break from the intense psychodrama on the other tracks.
Those going through a tough breakup or quarter-life crisis might find solace commiserating with Peeps on “Waiting to Die.” Personally, I had a hard time connecting with it. To me it felt like listening in on a therapy session of someone whose problems I didn’t find interesting. I wasn’t feeling his aggro flow, and I never really bought into the super serious vibe of the record. This is coming from a guy who has never owned an Eminem record and thinks “Lose Yourself” is a weak song, so it is highly possible that I am not the intended audience for Peeps. If the idea of crazed confessional hip-hop piques your interest, “Waiting To Die” is available for free on Bandcamp. I’m taking a pass.