REVIEW: Die Antwoord – “Ten$Ion”

[Feb. 7, 2012 – Zef Recordz // Find it at: Insound | iTunes]


In one ear and out it goes the other. In a span of 20 months, Die Antwoord signed to a major, re-released a debut and waved goodbye to the same label due to being less commercial. One listen to the group’s second full-length, Ten$Ion, begs to question if anyone was really listening. Though the highly audible Ninja and Yo-Landi Vi$$er claim it’s a record with high gangster levels, it’s almost “fok bitches, let’s party” with a lot more pop-orientated aspects than $0$ and it’s weird introduction. The main difference being, their taste for rave is more apparent. The Afro techno pop jaunts that play with the innocence of keyboards and back it up with Mortal Kombat-like percussion (“Baby’s On Fire”, “I Fink You Freeky”) are highly complex, making it seem out of the ordinary for Die Antwoord, but better than their usual rants about ninjas (“U Make A Ninja Wanna Fuck”) and fame (“So What?”).

But Ten$Ion isn’t the LP that re-writes genres with a foreign talent that’s been written off for months. From Track 1 to 13, it’s a rhythmic record with styles being brushed over by the group’s unheralded ability to strap hip-hop, dance and beatboxes to one output while it severely lacks the education to make the listener be responsive. Between uncensored outbursts (“DJ Hi-Tek Rulez”) and a combustion of noise (“Never Le Nkemise 1”), it addresses a pressing question: is this still a real thing? Die Antwoord beg to differ feeling sorry for those that ask that question, but it still floats to the top when arguably one of their best tracks – an M.I.A.-perfect bass stomp titled “Hey Sexy” – quotes Ludacris, talks about jamming cocaine up noses and uses too much Afrikaan making it seem like a Turkish chart topper or an amateur YouTube recording gone wrong. There’s a lot more confidence in Ninja and Vi$$er’s new effort, but it’s forced, coming off senseless and providing some sort of proof their fire might finally be cooling off.

Download: “Fok Julle Naaiers”, “Hey Sexy”

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  • me says:

    you are wrong.

  • Anonymous says:

    they’re just starting…evil lafffffter

  • goatmanifesto! says:


  • Michael says:

    During Hey Sexy, he mentions cocaine specifically to say he doesn’t do it and doesn’t like how some people act when they’re on it. He also refers to Interscope records as into-coke records on another track. Pay a bit more attention, please.

  • Eric Murphy says:

    I think maybe you’ve been a bit harsh; the album grows after a few listens. That said, in essence, you are correct. Die Antwoord are a (wonderful) one-trick pony; sadly it seems inevitable they’ll end up flogging a dead horse. Personally, I think they should have quietly gone away after dropping their astonishing first album.

  • JOjo says:

    Did you give the album a detailed listen? Being critical is part of a good review, but it seems like you don’t understand or completely misinterpreted some songs.

    How do get “talks about jamming cocaine up noses” from the lyrics “(dark voice) Let’s go do some drugs man. (Ninja response) Uhh, no thanks my brotha. Ninja’s not a no game havin cocaine jammin up my nose blades passin paranoid mothafucka, nawww” ? Not much room for interpretation on that one.

    If didn’t catch such a slow, easy to understand lyrics, it’s no wonder you think this albumis just “fok bitches, let’s party.” You’re missing the humor and social commentary. Stuff like ” I rap so good because my dick’s so big” is hilarious – he reduces one of the main rap boasts to it’s stupid essence.

  • Dave says:

    Check out Die Antwoord’s previous groups (specifically Ninja) : The Original Evergreens, The Constructus Project, Max Normal, Max Normal.TV. Die Antwoord is just a very different style. The musical ability and lyrical genius cannot be questioned.

  • jesse says:

    I agree. You are completely wrong. And the point of this record has passed you by.

  • Anonymous says:

    Die Antwoord cannot be critically analysed, you’re either in love and you get it, or confused by them and pissed off they are getting atention, I’m so pleased they exist, I hate how everything is controlled and regulated by the record corporations nowadays, probably even the critics (not trying to say the writer of this article is)

  • Anonymous says:

    LOL! This interviewer as obviously never seen them live. Minds were BLOWN in Brisbane last night!!!!

  • Zef hosh ya says:

    Fok julle, you know nothing you mase poes. Die Antwoord is da best

  • Anonymous says:


  • Anonymous says:

    The world has been waiting for this group, the music industry needs this group, HipHop definitely needs this group, and im so grateful they had the confidence and talent to pull die antwoord off. They are definitely just getting started. There is genius in this so called one trick pony. Not only are they amazing live, but their dedication and talent is so impressive its actually intimidating. And DJ HiTek rules is a testosterone fueled beat with a mike tyson rant laid over the top of it.

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