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Let the Children Die (Fontana North)

The hip-hop underground can be a place of pain. With Let the Children Die, Toronto-based and Polaris Prize-nominated D-Sisive proves this to be true. Beats are slow and steady. The low end rules---see the bass and organ samples on "Song to Sing" and "Riot I Caused," featuring Classified. Production is minimal and moody. Winter imagery and motifs of absence (ultimately death) are sharply delivered in D-Sisive's reedy flow, notably on the title track, "Switzerland," "Father" and "Glorious." The album stands among the tallest figures, including Buck 65 ("Roses and Blue Jays"), The Roots (Things Fall Apart) and Blackalicious (The Craft).

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