1000 gecs is the debut album by experimental music duo 100 gecs, composed of Dylan Brady and Laura Les. Self-produced and released through Brady's Dog Show Records on May 2019, the album reached mass notoriety throughout the Internet thanks to its unabashedly surreal nature.
Picture someone taking every genre a teenager in the 2000s/2010s would've obsessed over, along with a considerable amount of crack, and throwing everything into an industrial-grade blender at its highest setting, and you have an idea of what this album sounds like.
More descriptively, it utilizes those genres (brostep, nightcore, emo rock, third wave ska, etc.) and refracts them through an extremely glitchy, saturated sound that's been dubbed "hyperpop", with autotune-drenched vocals singing lyrics depicting bizarre stories or paying homage to the angsty songwriting tropes of some of the aforementioned genres, either humorously exaggerating them or playing them straight to a weirdly melancholic effect.
Critics were notably receptive to the album, with it making a number of year-end lists, but as you may suspect, public opinions were considerably more interesting, especially following the album's instantaneous assimilation into meme culture, especially on the back of its lead single "money machine", which brought a lot of attention from general audiences to the album and band as a whole.
Reactions to 1000 gecs can generally be split into three camps: those who dismiss it as gimmicky garbage that labors to be as obnoxious as possible, those who aren't fond of it but listen to it from an ironic perspective, and those who genuinely enjoy it in all of its insanity — for very similar reasons as those who hate it — and maintain that it's a listening experience well worth your time.
A Remix Album titled 1000 gecs and the Tree of Clues was released in July 2020, featuring collaborations from acts including Charli XCX, Kero Kero Bonito, Rico Nasty, Fall Out Boy, Tommy Cash, Hannah Diamond, and Dorian Electra. In addition to the remix tracks, the digital release of the album comes with new original songs played and performed in the interim between the original and remix albums.
- "745 sticky"
- "money machine"
- "800db cloud"
- "I Need Help Immediately"
- "stupid horse"
- "hand crushed by a mallet"
- "gec 2 Ü"
1000 gecs contains examples of:
- all lowercase letters: All titles are rendered this way, except for "I Need Help Immediately", "xXXi_wud_nvrstøp_ÜXXx", and "gec 2 Ü".
- Auto-Tune: Used shamelessly and extensively throughout the album, though considering the highly sporadic, glitchy sound of everything else, you might be forgiven for not even noticing it.
- Boastful Rap: "745 sticky", "money machine" and "hand crushed by a mallet"
- Genre Mashup: As described below, the duo's style is a mishmash of different popular genres from the 2000s and 2010s.
- Genre Roulette: The album mixes influences from hip-hop, trap, brostep, nightcore, third-wave ska, bubblegum bass, drum and bass, noise, metal, emo rap, emo rock, glitch, crunkcore and sound collage.
- Heävy Mëtal Ümlaut: Present in the title of "gec 2 Ü", purely for stylistic reasons.
- Longest Song Goes Last: The finale "gec 2 Ü" is about 3 minutes long compared to the 1-2 minute running time of the other tracks.
- Lyrical Dissonance: The contrast between the angsty teenage drama lyrics and the bass-boosted, dirty soundscapes in songs like "gec 2 Ü" or "800db cloud" is striking. "ringtone" is also dissonant on account of its cutesy sound and increasingly disturbing lyrics. And of course, "stupid horse" is a bouncy ska-style song about gambling problems, beating the hell out of a jockey, and stealing his horse.
- Minimalistic Cover Art: The album cover depicts Dylan and Laura facing a tree and "1000 gec"[sic] crudely written in the bottom-right corner.
- Mondegreen: Invoked by "gec 2 Ü", which is actually a Non-Appearing Title meant to be a play on the phrase "get to you", which recurs in the song's chorus.
- Money Song: "money machine".
- Obsession Song: "ringtone". It follows Laura as she sings about customizing the ringtone of her phone for a special person, who doesn't even know she likes them.
- One-Word Title: "ringtone" and "gecgecgec".
- Sensory Abuse:
- The bass lines in "800db cloud" and "gec 2 Ü" reach ear-piercing levels. It's especially violent in the latter, as it descends further and further into a bass-boosted hell during the last forty seconds.
- The last third of "money machine" also counts.
- Something Completely Different: "I Need Help Immediately" is a deranged sound collage that functions outside of the album's sound range entirely as a weird skit.
- Stylistic Suck:
- Apart from the autotune overload, the lyrics invoke clichés of teenage life and emo rock from the early 2000s.
- The music videos also utilize this, as many of them have incredibly minimalist and somewhat cheap looking settings.
- Surprisingly Gentle Song:
- Relatively speaking, "ringtone" is significantly less aggressive and much more light and dainty in sound compared to the rest of the album.
- The first half of "gecgecgec" is an assorted collage of instrumental loops that notably avoid being cacophonous, and the second half of it also features a notably softer and ballad-like version of their harsh sound.
- Surreal Music Video: Pretty much all of the music videos released for the album.
- The music video of "hand crushed by a mallet": The video has Dylan wearing a garish yellow suit and green make-up playing the Knife Game in a messy room full of garbage and typing on an old Windows computer, and Laura dressed like a fly breaks in and starts to bug him, until he pulls out an oversized sword and kills her. After putting her body in the trash, she somehow comes back and destroys his computer with a hammer.
- "money machine" is less nonsensical, but not by too much; Dylan and Laura are just singing the song at a car dealership, with stock explosions and sound effects littered throughout. The visualizer, on the other hand, somewhat subverts this, since it's just Dylan and Laura browsing a shop, at least until they start picking up dozens of trophies.
- "800db cloud": The video consists of Laura and Dylan at a variety of locations slowly peeking at the viewer from around various corners. Interspersed throughout are also strange pictures, like a bride peeking through blinds and a man wearing a green goblin mask. The video culminates in the two head-banging in front of a movie theater with Aladdin posters, with a bunch of bystanders equally as confused as the viewer.
- Word Salad Lyrics: All lyrics in the album jump wildly between tone and almost elude meaning. Among the most notable is the spoken-word intro to "money machine", which reads like a deranged shitpost copypasta."Hey you lil' piss baby, you think you're so fucking cool? Huh? You think you're so fucking tough? You talk a lotta big game for someone with such a small truck! Aw, look at those arms, your arms look so fucking cute, they look like lil' cigarettes, I bet I could smoke you, I could roast you, and then you'd love it and you'd text me "I love you" and then I'd fucking ghost you!"