Cranial Indiscretions

by Johan Ess

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about

Making a fresh appearance after years of radio silence, Johan Ess now presents an EP of four tracks built to last. This release was only possible for Johan Ess to complete after acquiring a new computer since their previous studio equipment had fallen apart several years hence from extensive obsolescence. There have also been countless setbacks for the artist in recent years, such as living in poverty in the Deep South, having their skull cracked open, being abducted by aliens, moving across the country thrice, and what have you. Their passion for quality dark electro-pop has not waned, however, and fans of the Johan Ess “sound” should be quite pleased with this new effort.

Some of these tracks have been in the works for quite a while. Perception Management, in particular, was culled from an early demo made in FL Studio back at the very beginning stages of their career and reworked over a span of nearly fifteen years to achieve the driving beats and foreboding message it bears today. Perfect Forward was recorded five years prior to this release when they had brief access to a studio filled to the brim with analog synths but have only recently been able to finish recording the vocals, with subject matter delving sarcastically into addressing privacy and security concerns in the digital age.

There are also tracks written entirely on their new setup to be found at the beginning and end of this EP. Those who enjoyed Johan’s cover album Shout Out should appreciate these two cover-esque parodies that were made as studio warm ups for more original future endeavors. Forgot About Ess is a vaguely recognizable nod to a well known hip hop artist’s comeback track from the early 2000’s that Johan has reshaped to reflect a similar point in their career, but with a bit more of “tongue biting cheek” sensibility. Micro Killer is an epic anthem many will recognize, albeit styled in a more danceable electronic form, with sardonic lyrics calling attention to those who commit atrocities in order to achieve lasting notoriety for their misdeeds.

Calling into question the nature of pop music and propaganda, mass culture and individual identity, the serious and the farcical, Cranial Indiscretions was designed to be a thought provoking communiqué on our current age of binary command signals that we seem to blindly follow, often to our own detriment. These curious concoctions also show a new level of achievement in production experimentation and attention to detail. Whether this release marks the beginning of a new era for Johan Ess is yet to be known, but it seems equally suited as an intriguing comeback or a final swan song for their catalogue.

credits

released December 21, 2018



Produced by Johan Ess

Backing vocals on Forgot About ESS by Keith Readdy and ʈ ʈ ʈ l l l ɽ ɽ ɽ.
Backing vocals on Perfect Forward by Kayla S.

Cover art by Taylor Shechet. twitter.com/_tlr_

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about

Johan Ess Portland, Oregon

An experimental electronic musical performance artist based in the Pacific Northwest that incorporates subversive themes with dope beats.

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Track Name: Forgot About Ess (feat. ʈ ʈ ʈ l l l ɽ ɽ ɽ)
Johan Ess:

Y'all know me, still the same old queen but I been Loki
hated on by most these crackers with no cheese, no skills and no G's
no synths and no keys, no Moogs, no Oberheims, and no 303s
mad at me cause I can finally afford to provide my MacBook Pro with VSTs

Got a wig with a studio and it's all full of tracks to play with the volume on max
Bangin hard in the dungeon in back of my place for sex scenes
Did y'all think I'm a let my show cease? Girl, please
You gamers rise up like gang weed. Who you think taught you to blow trees?

Who you think brought you the oldies?
Psychic TVs, Tiny Tims, and Current 93s
The Legendary Pink D-O-T’s
and the group that said “Hamburger Lady”

Gave you a zip file of dope beats
to bump when you cruise through in your hood
and when your album stems wasn't soundin too good
who's the trap that they told you to go see?

Y'all better listen up closely
all you crackas that said that I burned my laptop
or Nophi flopped, y'all are the reason that
Ess ain't been gettin no sleep

so fuck y'all, all’a y'all
if y'all don't like me, block me
y’all are gonna keep fuckin around with me and
make me emmanentize some Esshatology

ʈ ʈ ʈ l l l ɽ ɽ ɽ:

Nowadays everybody wanna talk like they got something to fess
But nothing comes out when they move their lips
Just a bunch of gibberish
And motherfuckers act like they forgot about ESS

Nowadays everybody wanna talk like they got something to fess
But nothing comes out when they move their lips
Just a bunch of gibberish
And motherfuckers act like they forgot about ESS

Johan Ess:

If it was up to me
you motherfuckers would stop spammin junk to me
with your soundcloud link DM'd to me like you want a retweet
When my last mixtape was out you wasn't bumpin me

But now that I got some better company
everybody wanna flock to me for some expertise
but you won't get a hum from me
‘cause I'm from the streets of Portlando

I trolled 'em all, all them little prankstaz
who you think helped lol 'em all?
Now you wanna run around talking bout memes like I ain't got none?
What you think I shared 'em all?

Cause I stay logged off?
Now all I get is email all day saying Ess fell off
What? ‘Cause I been in the lab with Ableton and iPad
tryin' to get this damn banger off?

I ain't havin' that, this is the millennium of mumble rap
It ain't gonna be nothin' after that
so give me one more gram of dabs and
fuck tardcore you can have it back

So where's all the mad ravers at?
It's like a festie in this habitat
But all you privileged brats
know that I was writing tracks while you were cuddling a Eurorack

ʈ ʈ ʈ l l l ɽ ɽ ɽ:

Nowadays everybody wanna talk like they got something to fess
But nothing comes out when they move their lips
Just a bunch of gibberish
And motherfuckers act like they forgot about ESS

Nowadays everybody wanna talk like they got something to fess
But nothing comes out when they move their lips
Just a bunch of gibberish
And motherfuckers act like they forgot about ESS
Track Name: Perfect Forward
Shout out to my homeboy E. Snowden
What up Jules Assange?

Perfect Forward, now
Get your dongle out

HACK THE PLANET
BLOWIN UP HARDCORE
GET WRECKED
KICK EM IN THE NUTS

I love to get me bitcoin on but I like to stay anon
on the dark web all day long surfing using Tor til dawn
I need a new phenomenon to keep the feds from catchin on
me infosec be second to none but encryption can be undone

secrecy is where it’s at and PFS can get you that
no one need to have they chats scrutinized by bureaucrats
data cloud under attack your private key is theirs to crack
go full stealth mode don’t look back now VPN your data stack

Perfect Forward Secrecy
Run With Me
Public Key Cryptography To Be Free
Run With Me

network
relay
modem
website
private
circuit
secret
synapse

Give me anonymity!

they want you to lose when you play it’s a rich man’s bloody game
assume the worst about the way your freedom is for sale today
the state has won free market’s done cause now they’ve taken all the fun
it’s zero-sum the Silk Road gone but free Dread Pirate Roberts mon

with unbreachable security a better world’s a certainty
give the people privacy so they can realize they dreams
governments are never sane they persecute for their own gain
fuck the system use your brain the power’s in your hands me mayne

Perfect Forward Secrecy
Run With Me
Public Key Cryptography To Be Free
Run With Me

How bout dat Chelsea Manning?
Solidarity for Reality Winner!
Track Name: Perception Management
Mind-Control
Perception Management

psychotronic penetration
data process simulation
undercover operation
redirecting information

wave hello to your behavior analyst
undetectable sabotage works better than a fist
eyes are open and observe all they can see
just look at what they've done to you and me

Perception Management

I am the by-product of your toxic mind control
I am just a product to be packaged, tagged and sold
Subject me to your paralyzing sugar coated lies
Revise my mental history to silence all my cries

My freedom is nothing but a delusion
My speech is the mouthpiece of confusion
My expression is a form of pollution
I'm a slave to the human institution

Do you want it? Do you need it?
Do you like my mnemonic device?
Don't you want it? Don't you need it?
Don't you love my mnemonic device?

artificial without flesh
surveillance in the geomesh
brute-force encryption cyberhack
consumer terrorist attack

kiss your mind goodbye, it's time to go to sleep
atone for your transgressions before you get too deep
disrobe and kneel before them, you're naked and exposed
the final chapter of your freedom has come to a close

Perception Management

I have been upgraded and I stay in the same mode
I am automatic and now operate on code
Command me to obliterate as though it were my Will
Delete my sense of conscience and then send me out to kill

My free will is nothing but an illusion
My thoughts are somewhat prone to substitution
My mind resists any kind of evolution
I'm no longer the problem. I’m the solution.

The end goal is mind-control
The end goal is to kill your soul
The end goal is mind-control
The end goal is Perception Management!
Track Name: Micro Killer
I can't seem to face up to the facts
I'm tense and nervous and I can't relax
I can't sleep 'cause my hair’s on fire
Don't touch me I'm a real live wire

Micro Killer
Qu'est-ce que c'est
Fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-far better
Run run run run run run run away oh oh
Micro Killer
Qu'est-ce que c'est
Fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-far better
Run, run, run, run, run, run, run, away oh oh oh
Aye Yi Yi Yi Yi Ooh!

I start a conversation, I can't even finish it
I’m talking a lot but I’m not saying anything
When I have nothing to say, my lips ain’t sealed
Say something once? Let’s say it again!

Micro Killer
Qu'est-ce que c'est
Fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-far better
Run run run run run run run away oh oh oh
Micro Killer
Qu'est-ce que c'est
Fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-far better
Run, run, run, run, run, run, run, away oh oh oh oh!
Aye Yi Yi Yi Yi Ooh!

Ce que j'ai fais, ce soir la
Ce qu'elle fait, ce soir la
Realisant mon victoire
Je me lance, vers la grandeur, OK

Yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah

We are vain and we are blind
I hate the news when they're not polite

Micro Killer
Qu'est-ce que c'est
Fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-far better
Run run run run run run run away oh oh oh
Micro Killer
Qu'est-ce que c'est
Fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-far better
Run, run, run, run, run, run, run, away oh oh oh
Aye Yi Yi Yi Yi Ooh!

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