Guillotine by Death Grips: Lyrics Meaning and Interpretation


Guillotine is a song by the American hip hop group Death Grips. It served as the lead single for the group’s first mixtape, Exmilitary (2011). Before you understand the Death Grips Guillotine lyrics meaning, you should learn about its title.

Title – What does it mean?

Guillotine is an ancient device used to carry out capital punishments by chopping off the heads of the culprits. In this song, “Guillotine” is a metaphor for the fate that awaits the haters and rivals of Death Grips. With the title explained, it is time to dive into Death Grips Guillotine lyrics meaning.

Verse 1 – What does it mean?

Sit in the dark and ponder how

I’m fit to make the bottom fall through the floor

And they all fall down, yuh

The narrator uses the imagery of a guillotine to warn his adversaries and enemies. People who were executed using a guillotine had to kneel and stick their head through a hole, facing the ground. In some cases, a black cloth was placed over the head to prevent the victim from seeing his / her eventual demise.

The rivals of Death Grips face a similar fate or situation. They are under the guillotine, with a black cloth over their heads. All they can do is “Sit in the dark” and wonder what fate awaits them. Meanwhile, Death Grips holds the position of power. They are in charge of the guillotine and can make “the bottom fall”. This means, Death Grips can release the blade on the guillotine and behead their rivals. Once beheaded, the lifeless heads of the adversaries will fall down “through the floor”.

Death Grips has claimed victory over rivals in the past. Anyone who tried to test their strength met their demise. In the end, all the haters “fall down”.

(It goes, it goes, it goes, it goes, it goes, it goes yuh)

Out of the shadows barrage of witch tongue

Cobra spit over apocalyptic cult killer cauldron smoke

Stomp music seriously, yuh

These lines conjure up the imagery of a witch working her craft. Death Grips are that witch, brewing a potent potion in their cauldron. To strengthen their potion the band uses all sorts of mysterious ingredients, like “Cobra spit”. Rivals and haters do not want to mess with Death Grips, unless they want to fall victim to the “apocalyptic cult killer”.

This imagery can also describe the drum beats in the group’s music, including this song. These lines then refer to the prowess of their drummer Zach Hill who can produce sick beats.

(It goes, it goes, it goes, it goes, it goes, it goes)

Can’t stop the groove licks jaws clear off them locks relentless raw movement

The beats on this song by Death Grips is so contagious that the listeners cannot help themselves but “groove” along. On hearing this song, an animalistic “raw movement” consumes the listeners, making them dance and have a blast. They turn into fans of Death Grips, ready to break the jaws of haters who criticize the group.

Fit to knock you from here to that G-spot body rock connected

To everything you want, ever did want, we got it why not come get it

Stick your head in that hole and watch me drop this cold guillotine death sentence, yuh


Deploying a double entendre with the phrase “death sentence”, Death Grips caters to both fans and haters. For the fans, the music of Death Grips is “everything you want”. By listening to Death Grips the fans will be seduced to a state of submission where they will thoroughly enjoy the music. On the other hand, haters and rivals will meet their end if they go on hating. All that the group needs to do is drop the blade from the guillotine.

What does the chorus mean?

It goes, it goes, it goes, it goes

It goes, it goes, it goes, it goes

Guillotine, yuh

Comparing their music to the actual guillotine, the narrator talks about how they cut through the silence with their beats. Guillotine was a device used to carry out death sentences by beheading the guilty. It was in use since 1307 till just a few decades back.

Since it was used to kill criminals, guillotine in the song also symbolizes how Death Grips is here to murder bad music. They indirectly claim how great and game-changing their sound is. Their music will not stop but rise as “it goes, it goes, it goes…”. Any rival trying to take away Death Grips’ spotlight will meet their end under the guillotine, that is, their music.

The chorus of this song effectively explains the Death Grips Guillotine lyrics meaning.

Verse 2 – What does it mean?


Hidden art, between and beneath, every fragmented, figure of speech

Tongue in reverse, whenever the beat

Causes my jaws to call out, out, out, out, yuh

MC Ride, the rapper from the group Death Grips, talks about his unique style of rapping these lines. He is known to subvert the use of regular phrases, instead opting for a more fragmented approach to the lyrics. Through these lines he is letting the listeners know that to get the real meaning behind his words they need to search for the “Hidden art”.

The screens flashing red, can’t see shit but heads

Spinning exorcist like planets out of orbit off the edge

The imagery of “screens flashing red” is a direct reference to the live concerts of Death Grips. The group makes use of flashing red strobe lights during their live performances which can disorient or excite the audience. Sometimes, the impact of these lights can be so powerful that the viewers feel their heads spin like the girl from the 1973 movie, The Exorcist. It is a surreal experience, like “planets out of orbit”.

Off mine axis whipping through doors to far more than all that’s ever been said, yuh

Tie the chord, kick the chair and you’re dead, yuh


It is not the fans alone who are spinning out of control. The group is also feeling the music as they continue “whipping through doors”. The use of the term “off mine axis” could refer to the authentic and experimental nature of Death Grips’ music. They rebel against the standard.

Verse 3 – What does it mean?

Head of a trick in a bucket, body of a trick in a bag

And thrown in the fire like fuck it, gotta burn it before it goes bad

This is another warning to the haters of Death Grips. The band is not fooling around. “trick” in these lines refer to a prostitute’s customer who gets duped, robbed, or worse, murdered. The haters of Death Grips will face the same fate if they do not get their act together.

One too many times been disgusted by the stench of rot is such a drag, yuh

Get broke by the street like blood stained glass, yuh

Choke on these nuts till the very last, yuh

Many have tried to defeat the Death Grips. But they all met their demise. In fact, the band has destroyed so many rivals that their corpses have piled up and have begun to stink. Even the streets are stained with the blood of Death Grips’ victims.

(It goes, it goes, it goes, it goes)

Serial number, killing machine, the illest of means

To an end built on the filthy sound you’re experiencing, yuh


All this aggression from murders and destruction ultimately culminates into the music of Death Grips. It can be said that this violence is what makes their music so good.

Verse 4 – What does it mean?

Tinted windows, bulletproof

The slip knot fixing rope to noose

To the grave stone grinder of cold steel

The passion that blinds me so I feel, yuh!

Can’t let go, no it flows through our veins

Blows through our tunnels and rattles our chains

And they all fall down, yuh

At the end of the day, Death Grips is all about the music. They are driven with extreme passion which shows in their songs and performances. Dangerous but committed to the sound, Death Grips carries on in their “bulletproof” persona.


Yuh, yuh, yuh, yuh

Yuh, yuh, yuh, yuh

Yuh, yuh, yuh, yuh

Yuh, yuh, yuh, yuh

Yuh, yuh, yuh, yuh

Hope you have now understood the Death Grips Guillotine lyrics meaning.


This song is very aggressive yet passionate. Understanding the energy the group puts into their music is the real Death Grips Guillotine lyrics meaning.

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