Girl Talk Wiki
Night Ripper
Night Ripper.jpg
Studio album by Girl Talk
Released May 9, 2006
Genre Mashup, electronic, dance
Length 42:05
Label Illegal Art
Format CD, LP, digital download
Producer Girl Talk
Girl Talk chronology
Stop Cleveland Hate.jpg Night Ripper.jpg Bone Hard Zaggin.jpg
(2004) (2006) (2006)

Night Ripper is the third studio album by American mashup musician Girl Talk, released on May 9, 2006. The album is composed almost entirely of samples taken from other artists' music, along with minor original instrumentation recorded by Girl Talk himself. He constructed Night Ripper whilst working as a biomedical engineer, dividing time between both of his occupations. The album was originally produced as one seamless piece of music before subsequently being broken into individual tracks.

The album was produced by Girl Talk in seven to eight months and mastered by Jonathan Schenke. Illegal Art initially released Night Ripper as a digital download on their website, later making the album available on other sites and shipping the album to select record stores due to strong demand. None of the samples used on the album were cleared prior to release, causing several online retailers to pull the album from their listings. Night Ripper was later re-released for download on the Illegal Art website through a new "pay what you want" pricing system.

Background and production[]

While still retaining the sample-based nature of Secret Diary, Unstoppable focused more on beatwork as well as structuring and layering samples into full tracks.[1] The album's stylistic change was brought about by Girl Talk's experiences performing live, which influenced him to "make the music more accessible and push the party vibe."[1] Following the release of Unstoppable, he spent an additional two years touring before beginning work on his third studio album.[1]

Described by Girl Talk as "a record that reflects [his] own personal music tastes," Night Ripper features over 300 samples of other artists' songs, spanning several decades and genres.[2][3] Commenting on the process of choosing samples to use, he explained: "I'll just hear something on the radio or at a party and go ahead and sample it off a CD or record or download it. I sample loops and breaks and vocal clips all the time. So I've been cataloguing samples for years, I have this massive library. Songs come out everyday so it's never ending."[4]

The entirety of Night Ripper was produced using a WAV digital audio editor, with Girl Talk manipulating samples by chopping, layering and transitioning them.[4] He also recorded original synthesizer and keyboard instrumentation for certain tracks.[5] The album was created by Girl Talk as one long piece of music, which he subsequently split into individual tracks.[5] He was also working as a biomedical engineer at the time, obliging him to divide his time between his day job and his music career, including production of the album.[1][6] It took seven to eight months for Girl Talk to complete work on the album.[7] Subsequent audio mastering was done by Jonathan Schenke.


Illegal Art released Night Ripper on May 9, 2006 as a digital download on their website, available in two choices: a single seamless file, or separated into individual tracks.[2] Strong demand prompted the label to produce physical CD and LP copies of the album for shipping to select record stores,[2] as well as make it available for purchase on several online retailers.[8] Illegal Art did not clear any of the samples used on Night Ripper, leading to several problems in the album's distribution and release.[9] At least one CD manufacturing plant refused to press the album,[10] and the head of another plant asked Girl Talk and his label to justify the use of two specifically chosen samples.[4] Online music stores eMusic and iTunes both pulled Night Ripper from sale due to sample clearance concerns. Anticipating lawsuits, Illegal Art prepared a defense citing the fair use trademark law as a legal backbone for the album's use of samples.[8] The label also went over the possibility of a royalty system, but ultimately scrapped it when they decided that it would only weaken their fair use argument.[9] Ultimately, no lawsuits materialized in wake of the album's success, which Girl Talk described as "liberating."[11]

The album's positive reception boosted Girl Talk's popularity and reputation, and Night Ripper has been described as his breakthrough album.[12] Following the album's release, American musician Beck asked Girl Talk to open for him at a concert in London.[7] Blender also invited him to perform at their MTV Video Music Awards after-party.[7] Several artists commissioned Girl Talk to produce remixes of their tracks, including Beck, Good Charlotte, Grizzly Bear and Peter Bjorn and John.[7] Night Ripper has sold over 20,000 copies in the United States, according to Nielsen SoundScan.[9] The album was later re-released for download on the Illegal Art website through a new "pay what you want" pricing system in June 2009.[13] Individuals who donated $100 or more to the Charity: Water foundation received a limited edition pink vinyl pressing of Night Ripper.[14]

Critical reception[]

Night Ripper was generally well-received by contemporary music critics.[15] In a rave review, Cam Lindsay of Exclaim! praised the album's "extraordinary" cohesion and wrote: "Gillis is a rigorous craftsman, and his assembling skill is near perfect down to the second, introducing the next song at the most opportune moment."[16] Sean Fennessey of Pitchfork also responded favorably, commending the "pure precision" of Girl Talk's sampling and naming the album as the "soundtrack of the summer" for 2006.[17] Robert Christgau of The Village Voice called Night Ripper "the best mash-up album since 2002's The Best Bootlegs in the World Ever" and compared Girl Talk to prominent samplers DJ Shadow and The Avalanches, "only with obvious samples rather than obscure ones".[18]

While stating that the album's reliance on samples of popular music makes it "lose its appeal after a few spins", Marisa Brown of AllMusic wrote that Girl Talk's "ability to draw from a myriad of musical sources" allows Night Ripper to "appeal to anyone who's heard the radio... in the past few years."[19] Similarly, Nate Dorr of PopMatters remarked that the album "holds undeniable appeal, both for sample trainspotters and music geeks... as well as, more importantly perhaps, for the much broader cross-section of listeners who just want to put on a consistently catchy, entertaining record."[20]

Dan Silver of NME said that while the "sheer scope" of Girl Talk's sampling sets him apart from other mash-up artists, Night Ripper "begins to feel much less than the sum of its samples," ultimately describing it as "not so much a work of art, then, as the basis for a 21st century parlour game."[21] Cameron Macdonald of Stylus Magazine dismissed the album as "nothing more than a DJ mix with escapist fun so thick that it is unlikely that listeners will pause the record after every minute to discuss how Gillis battles tentacles of the corporate record industry's squid."[22] While writing that the album "isn't exactly high art", Noel Murray of The A.V. Club described Night Ripper as "one of the most purely fun albums to come along since The Go! Team's debut" and advised readers to obtain the record "before it gets sued out of existence."[23]



Year Award Status Ref.
2006 Shortlist Music Prize Nominated [24]

Year-end lists[]

Source List Position Ref.
Blender Top 20 Albums of 2006 13 [24]
Robert Christgau Dean's List: Albums 53 [25]
Idolator Jackin' Pop 17 [24]
No Ripcord Top 50 Albums of 2006 39 [26]
Pitchfork Top 50 Albums of 2006 34 [27]
Refinery29 Albums of the Year 20 [24]
Rolling Stone 50 Best Albums of 2006 22 [28]
Spin The 40 Best Albums of 2006 27 [29]
The Village Voice Pazz & Jop: Albums 39 [30]

Decade-end lists[]

Source List Position Ref.
The A.V. Club The Best Music of the Decade 47 [31]
betterPropaganda Top 100 Albums of the Decade 93 [24]
Pitchfork The Top 200 Albums of the 2000s 159 [32]
PlayGround The Best Albums of the Decade 107 [24]
Slant Magazine Top 250 Albums of the 2000s 126 [24]
Stylus Magazine The Stylus Decade: Top Albums 93 [33]
Under the Radar Top 200 Albums of the Decade 182 [24]

Track listing[]

  1. "Once Again" – 2:40
  2. "That's My DJ" – 2:08
  3. "Hold Up" – 2:50
  4. "Too Deep" – 2:29
  5. "Smash Your Head" – 3:01
  6. "Minute by Minute" – 3:12
  7. "Ask About Me" – 2:26
  8. "Summer Smoke" – 2:17
  9. "Friday Night" – 3:12
  10. "Hand Clap" – 1:53
  11. "Give and Go" – 2:53
  12. "Bounce That" – 3:23
  13. "Warm It Up" – 2:15
  14. "Double Pump" – 1:45
  15. "Overtime" – 2:15
  16. "Peak Out" – 3:20


"Once Again"[]

"That's My DJ"[]

"Hold Up"[]

"Too Deep"[]

"Smash Your Head"[]

"Minute by Minute"[]

"Ask About Me"[]

"Summer Smoke"[]

"Friday Night"[]

"Hand Clap"[]

"Give and Go"[]

"Bounce That"[]

"Warm It Up"[]

"Double Pump"[]


"Peak Out"[]

Sampled artists[]

164 artists sampled on Night Ripper are thanked in the liner notes of the album. However, the list published in the liner notes is incomplete—Girl Talk has stated that extremely minor elements were sampled from tracks he cannot remember. Curiously, artists such as DJ Funk and P.M. Dawn are also omitted despite having rather noticeable samples on the album.

  1. 2 Live Crew
  2. 2Pac
  3. 50 Cent
  4. 69 Boyz
  5. ABBA (*)
  6. Paula Abdul
  7. Aerosmith
  8. Amerie
  9. Annie
  10. Arrested Development
  11. David Banner
  12. Rob Base
  13. Bell Biv DeVoe
  14. George Benson
  15. Better Than Ezra
  16. Beyoncé
  17. Black Box
  18. The Black Crowes
  19. Black Eyed Peas
  20. Black Rob
  21. Black Sheep
  22. Boredoms
  23. Boston
  24. Bow Wow
  25. Boyz II Men
  26. The Breeders
  27. Chris Brown
  28. Bun B
  29. Busta Rhymes
  30. Calloway
  31. Candyman
  32. Mariah Carey
  33. Cassidy
  34. Chicago
  35. Ciara
  36. Clipse
  37. Phil Collins
  38. Nikka Costa
  39. Crime Mob
  40. D12
  41. D4L
  42. DJ Assault (*)
  43. DJ EZ Rock
  44. Dem Franchize Boyz
  45. Digable Planets
  46. Diplomats (*)
  47. Dinosaur Jr. (*)
  48. Dr. Dre
  49. Jermaine Dupree [sic]
  50. Elastica
  51. Missy Elliott
  52. Eminem
  53. The Emotions
  54. En Vogue
  55. Fabolous
  56. Fall Out Boy
  57. Fatman Scoop
  58. The Five Stairsteps
  59. Fleetwood Mac
  60. Folk Implosion
  61. Foo Fighters
  62. G-Unit (*)
  63. The Game
  64. Garbage (*)
  65. Genesis
  66. Andrew Gold
  67. Al Green
  68. Peter Gunz
  69. Hall & Oates
  70. Sophie B. Hawkins
  71. Honey Drippers
  72. Hum
  73. Donnie Iris
  74. J-Kwon
  75. JJ Fad
  76. Jay-Z (*)
  77. Jefferson Airplane
  78. Joe Public
  79. Elton John
  80. Mike Jones
  81. Junior Mafia
  82. KRS-One
  1. Kansas
  2. Kelis
  3. Alicia Keys
  4. LCD Soundsystem
  5. LL Cool J
  6. Lady Sovereign
  7. Laid Back
  8. Lil Jon (*)
  9. Lil Wayne
  10. Lil Webbie
  11. Lisa Lisa and Cult Jam
  12. Lord Tariq
  13. Ludacris
  14. M.A.R.R.S.
  15. M.I.A.
  16. Madonna
  17. Main Ingredient
  18. Manfred Mann's Earth Band
  19. Marky Mark
  20. Paul McCartney
  21. Michael McDonald (*)
  22. George Michael
  23. Mobb Deep (*)
  24. Mark Morrison
  25. 'NSYNC
  26. Nas
  27. Nate Dogg
  28. Naughty by Nature
  29. Nelly
  30. Neutral Milk Hotel
  31. Nine Inch Nails
  32. Nirvana
  33. Noreaga
  34. Notorious B.I.G.
  35. Oasis
  36. P. Diddy
  37. Pavement
  38. Phantom Planet
  39. The Pharcyde
  40. Pharrell
  41. Pilot
  42. The Pixies
  43. Positive K
  44. Public Enemy
  45. Punjabi MC's [sic]
  46. Purple Ribbon All-Stars
  47. The Rentals
  48. Smokey Robinson
  49. S.W.V.
  50. Salt N Pepa
  51. Juelz Santana
  52. Seals and Crofts
  53. Sir Mix-a-Lot
  54. Slim Thug
  55. The Smashing Pumpkins
  56. Sonic Youth
  57. Britney Spears
  58. Billy Squier
  59. Gwen Stefani
  60. T.L.C.
  61. James Taylor
  62. Tears for Fears (*)
  63. Technotronic
  64. Three 6 Mafia
  65. Timbaland
  66. Trillville
  67. Trina
  68. The Verve
  69. The Waitresses
  70. Paul Wall
  71. Warren G
  72. Weezer
  73. Kanye West
  74. Whispers
  75. Wings
  76. Steve Winwood
  77. Stevie Wonder
  78. Wreckx-n-Effect
  79. X-Ray Spex
  80. Ying Yang Twins
  81. Young Gunz
  82. Young Jeezy
  • An asterisk (*) represents artists whose samples on the album are currently unknown.

List of sampled artists, as printed in the album's liner notes

Release history[]

Images Release date Format Label Catalog no. Ref.(s)
May 9, 2006 Compact disc Illegal Art IA113 [34]
Night Ripper.jpg May 9, 2006 Digital download Illegal Art N/A [2]
Night Ripper.jpg June 2009 Digital download (reissue) Illegal Art N/A [13]
December 8, 2009 12" vinyl (reissue) Illegal Art IA113LP [35][36]
12" vinyl (pink) (reissue) [14][36][37]



  • Girl Talk commissioned I Cut People to direct a music video for "Friday Night".[38] The video features pictures of Girl Talk mixed with images of the artists sampled on the track.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Eyl, Eryc (2007-10-04). Ripper Offer. The Pitch. Retrieved on 2013-04-22.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 Montgomery, James (2006-08-02). Waiting For A Ying Yang Twins/ ABBA Collabo? Girl Talk Has Your Record. MTV News. Retrieved on 2013-04-23.
  3. Klinge, Steve (2007-01-19). Mashing it up with Girl Talk Worlds merge at the hands of the 'Night Ripper' creator.. The Philadelphia Inquirer. Retrieved on 2013-04-23.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 Dombal, Ryan (2006-08-30). Interviews: Girl Talk. Pitchfork. Retrieved on 2013-04-23.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Girl Talk/Gregg Gillis On New Album, Music Industry. The Washington Post (2008-07-29). Retrieved on 2013-04-23.
  6. Bilton, Nick (2011-02-28). One on One: Girl Talk, Computer Musician. The New York Times. Retrieved on 2013-04-22.
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 Mervis, Scott (2006-12-21). Q&A with Girl Talk. Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Retrieved on 2013-04-23.
  8. 8.0 8.1 Anderson, Kyle (2006-10-01). The Monster Mash-Up (p. 32). Spin. Retrieved on 2013-04-23.
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 Ayers, Michael D. (2008-07-14). White Noise (p. 29). Billboard. Retrieved on 2013-04-23.
  10. Otterbein, Holly (2007-09-04). Interview: Girl Talk's Greg Gillis. The Temple News. Retrieved on 2013-04-23.
  11. Newton, Matthew (2008-09-22). The Inquisition: Girl Talk. Spin. Retrieved on 2013-04-23.
  12. Kosner, Anthony Wing (2012-10-07). Girl Talk's Gregg Gillis On Copyright, Curation and Making Mashups Rhyme. Forbes. Retrieved on 2013-04-23.
  13. 13.0 13.1 Girl Talk ‎– Night Ripper (File, MP3, Album). Discogs. Retrieved on 2014-01-30.
  14. 14.0 14.1 Girl Talk / Night Ripper / Pink Vinyl. Charity: Water. Retrieved on 2014-01-30.
  15. Ayers, Michael D. (2008-07-06). Girl Talk Prepares To Unleash 'Animals'. Billboard. Retrieved on 2013-04-22.
  16. Lindsay, Cam (2006-09-01). Girl Talk − Night Ripper. Exclaim!. Retrieved on 2013-04-22.
  17. Fennessey, Sean (2006-07-17). Girl Talk: Night Ripper. Pitchfork. Retrieved on 2013-04-22.
  18. Christgau, Robert. CG: Girl Talk. Retrieved on 2013-04-22.
  19. Brown, Marisa. Night Ripper – Girl Talk. AllMusic. Retrieved on 2013-04-22.
  20. Dorr, Nate (2006-06-21). Girl Talk: Night Ripper. PopMatters. Retrieved on 2013-04-22.
  21. Silver, Dan (2008-02-21). NME Album Reviews − Girl Talk: Night Ripper. NME. Retrieved on 2013-04-22.
  22. Macdonald, Cameron (2006-07-05). Girl Talk – Night Ripper – Review. Stylus Magazine. Retrieved on 2013-04-22.
  23. Murray, Noel (2006-07-05). Girl Talk / Nino Moschella. The A.V. Club. Retrieved on 2013-04-22.
  24. 24.0 24.1 24.2 24.3 24.4 24.5 24.6 24.7 Girl Talk: Night Ripper. Acclaimed Music. Retrieved on 2014-01-30.
  25. 2007: Dean's List. The Village Voice (2008-01-28). Retrieved on 2014-01-30.
  26. Top 50 Albums of 2006 (Part One). No Ripcord (2006-12-14). Retrieved on 2014-01-30.
  27. Top 50 Albums of 2006. Pitchfork (2006-12-19). Retrieved on 2014-01-30.
  28. Rolling Stone's Best Albums Of '06. Stereogum (2006-12-14). Retrieved on 2014-01-30.
  29. The 40 Best Albums of 2006. Spin (2006-12-14). Retrieved on 2014-01-30.
  30. The 2006 Pazz & Jop Critics Poll. The Village Voice (2007-02-06). Retrieved on 2014-01-30.
  31. The best music of the decade. The A.V. Club (2009-11-19). Retrieved on 2014-01-30.
  32. The Top 200 Albums of the 2000s: 200–151. Pitchfork (2009-09-28). Retrieved on 2014-01-30.
  33. Top Albums. The Stylus Decade. Retrieved on 2014-01-30.
  34. Girl Talk – Night Ripper (CD, Album). Discogs. Retrieved on 2014-01-25.
  35. Breihan, Tom (2009-12-07). Girl Talk Reissues: Benefit and Pay-What-You-Want. Pitchfork. Retrieved on 2014-01-25.
  36. 36.0 36.1 Girl Talk's Night Ripper Now Available On Vinyl!. Baeblemusic (2009-12-07). Retrieved on 2014-01-25.
  37. Girl Talk – Night Ripper (Vinyl, LP). Discogs. Retrieved on 2014-01-25.
  38. icutpeople (2006-08-19). girl talk 'friday night' by i cut people. YouTube. Retrieved on 2014-01-31.

External links[]

Girl Talk albums and singles
Studio albums
Secret Diary.jpg Unstoppable.jpg Night Ripper.jpg Feed the Animals.jpg All Day.jpg
Secret Diary
Night Ripper
Feed the Animals
All Day
Extended plays
Stop Cleveland Hate.jpg Bone Hard Zaggin.jpg Broken Ankles.jpg
Stop Cleveland Hate
Bone Hard Zaggin'
Broken Ankles
Believe in Magic.jpg Placeholder other.png Placeholder other.png Placeholder other.png Placeholder other.png
"Believe in Magic"
"Trouble in Paradise"
"No Problem"
Placeholder other.png Placeholder other.png
"Santos Party House"
Girl Talk songs
Secret Diary "Let's Start This Party Right" • "I Want You Back" • "Ffun Haave To" • "What If..." • "Time to Get Glamorous" • "Unicorn vs. Gravity" • "The Right Stuff" • "Fun in the Sun" • "Jumpin(g)" • "Friends 4-Ever"
Unstoppable "All Eyes on Me" • "Non-Stop Party Now" • "Touch 2 Feel" • "Pump It Up" • "Bang This in the Club" • "Bodies Hit the Floor" • "The Feeling" • "Happen" • "Cleveland, Shake" • "Keeping the Beat" • "Step to It" • "Can't Stop"
Night Ripper "Once Again" • "That's My DJ" • "Hold Up" • "Too Deep" • "Smash Your Head" • "Minute by Minute" • "Ask About Me" • "Summer Smoke" • "Friday Night" • "Hand Clap" • "Give and Go" • "Bounce That" • "Warm It Up" • "Double Pump" • "Overtime" • "Peak Out"
Bone Hard Zaggin' "Pure Magic" • "LC and Lo"
Feed the Animals "Play Your Part (Pt. 1)" • "Shut the Club Down" • "Still Here" • "What It's All About" • "Set It Off" • "No Pause" • "Like This" • "Give Me a Beat" • "Hands in the Air" • "In Step" • "Let Me See You" • "Here's the Thing" • "Don't Stop" • "Play Your Part (Pt. 2)"
All Day "Oh No" • "Let It Out" • "That's Right" • "Jump on Stage" • "This Is the Remix" • "On and On" • "Get It Get It" • "Down for the Count" • "Make Me Wanna" • "Steady Shock" • "Triple Double" • "Every Day"
Broken Ankles "Broken Ankles Intro" • "Tolerated" • "Tell Me Yeah" • "I Can Hear Sweat" • "Suicide" • "Lived It"
Other songs "Killing a Material Girl" • "Blue and Green and Brown Ousado" • "Let's Run This" • "On Nesbit" • "Andy van Slyke Marijuana Sensitivity" • "Believe in Magic" • "Oh Baby" • "Trouble in Paradise" • "No Problem" • "Outta Pocket" • "Toolie" • "Santos Party House" • "Fallin'"
Remixes "Cellphone's Dead" • "Let's Call It Off" • "Knife" • "Gasolina" • "Non-Tradition Ball Head"
Other productions "Cool as Hell" • "Addiction" • "Always Love You" • "First Thing's First" • "Steam Room" • "Lil Bitch" • "The Hook Up" • "Getcha Roll On" • "Bubble" • "Cinderella Story" • "Boats & Hoes"