D-Sisive - Run With The Creeps
Having released Jonestown 2: Jimmy Go Bye Bye earlier this year, Toronto emcee D-Sisive is already back for another round. Run With The Creeps makes for a pretty natural follow up album, in part because he enlists the help of producer Muneshine again. Others contribute as well, though, including Bird, Pigeon Hole, Techtwelve, The Dirty Sample, and Metty the Dertmerchant. If you’re already a fan of D-Sisive’s dry, self deprecating sense of humor and penchant for pop culture references, you won’t be disappointed.
The AV Club Toronto recently published a fun compare/contrast piece between Drake and D-Sisive. The gist of the article was that D-Sisive is a much more relatable artist, since even if we work with the assumption that Drake is keeping it real, his reality of extreme wealth, constant sex, and going to the club every night is not something most of have experienced. D-Sisive, on the other hand, is very relatable. He hides insecurities behind sarcastic jokes at his own expense, but over the course of an album he’ll open up and relay hopes and dreams along with his fears and disappointments, and the end result will be really moving hip hop that stays with you. Run With The Creeps opens with the jarring "Run," which takes a while to develop, but hits it’s stride as he rhymes over eerie keyboards and harsh drums about his personal struggles and how his music keeps him going. “The Invisible Man,” is D-Sisive at his best, as a midtempo groove allows his lyrics to shine as he discusses how hard it is to carve his own creative space and how he feels that no one is paying attention, which echoes through the chorus of “I’m so ghost I’m invisible, man.” If you want an example of how D-Sisive can use extended metaphors with pop culture references, look no further than “GG Allin,” which takes the infamous shock-punk artist as a jumping off point as an exploration of the divide between the mainstream and underground hip hop, and the hypocrisies that both sides claim. The most fun song on the album is “To The Moon,” which is classic boom bap with some great horn samples and big drums, and sing along chorus of “To the moon I say/’Cause we be on that shit like every day/To the moon, stars,/ Ma Ma Se Ma Ma Sa Ma Ma Coo Sa/Up up and away/Up up and away.” It does end oddly, though, with the beat fading out and Motem providing a stoned rambling about what the moon must feel about everyone appreciating it’s beauty. I’m not exactly sure what to make of it, but it certainly undoes all the energy built up from the song. “Chest Piece” features some great psychedelic production from Techtwelve and verses from Muneshine and Adam Bomb that explores issues of violence in hip hop. This gives way to “9 Millimeter,” which continues on the theme, but comes to a grinding halt when Fresco P comes on the mic and in a very condensed amount of time offends just about everyone he can. The worst line comes when he says “Every grown emcee that ever kissed a guy on the lips or a cop getting shot right now.” There is no nuance to his verse to give any sense of irony or assumed voice that would provide commentary, so I’m only left to conclude that he’s advocating the murder of any queer individual he comes across, which is absolutely terrible. Not to mention that he doesn't discuss what the police are doing that would warrant violence upon them, either. On top of that, it takes away all the nuanced discussion that had been happening up until that point. I can’t for the life of me understand why it was included on the album. Aside from the major setback, the album finishes out strong, especially the melancholic closing track of “One Last Dance,” featuring the vocals of Bedouin Soundclash’s Jay Malinowski.
Run With the Creeps, with the glaring exception of Fresco P’s hateful verse, is another strong collection of songs from D-Sisive. His lyrics are always placed up front, and we get plenty of great discussion of his personal life and his struggles within the music industry. It’s smart and moving, and if he had just excluded one small guest appearance, I could really champion it. As it is, I’m left conflicted.