'The Wages of Being Black is Death' is an exhausted and defeated audio documentation of the alienation - and eventual distillation - of the Black Body as a subject and content of the social sphere by Kepla & DeForrest Brown, Jr. Written and recorded in a week’s time between file-sharing and overnight home studio binges, the mixtape is framed as a deadpan comedy that follows a slothful and downtrodden Black Body as it drifts amongst the ambient commons of the Whites. Artist Ryan Kuo states that, “Whiteness acts by dictating the terms and categories that describe everything in the universe except itself.” 'The Wages of Being Black is Death' in turn serves as a reversal of the nominal gaze of categorization, a paranoid disavowal of an uneven and silent social contract as well as an intimate encounter with the daily, incessant slights and traumas felt by the Black Body in everyday life.
Commissioned by Maria Chavez at Mary Mattingly's barge/sculpture SWALE
Cover Photo by Ting Ding
Engineering by Jaclyn Miller (aka Voice Training)
Mastered by Leo
1. Tender is the Touch of White Liberal Complicity
2. Ain’t Even Got a Pot to Piss In
3. The Black Body is a Technology That Ensures White Comfort and Amusement (ft. Voice Training)
4. Sunken Place in Reverse…a Cancelled Future, a Horizon of a Pipe Dream
5. Black Icarus, or Uncle Tom?
6. Sophisticated Genocide - American Industrialized Culture is Designed to Flush Out Non-performing/Non-conforming Black Male Bodies
7. Bland and Processed