Indie (April 5, 2011)
Review by LaRosa
Have you ever heard a guy grab the microphone and from the first moment you hear him spit you knew he was born to born to rap? That’s how I feel about this Canadian brother who goes by the name Die-Rek. Here is an emcee with one of those voices that God made especially for the purpose of communicating through the medium of hip-hop, hands down. Having released a mixtape already, he is hitting us with his debut full-length album titled The Die-Version Project.
With The Die-Version Project, Die-Rek gives us some grown man hip-hop that is poised to make the listener see his view on life and possibly bring you to a turning point in yours. Touting skills as both an emcee and producer, Die-Rek’s hands are all over this project as he pulls double duty in lacing up the beats that he spits bars on. With a purpose of bringing the listener to a turning point & sharing his own views on life, this project presents a well balanced blend of positive Christian truths mixed with real world wisdom, making it suitable for just about any hip-hop fan out there.
This being the first we’ve really heard of Die-Rek, The Die-Version Project is a top-notch album and there’s a lot to like about it. Let’s start with the production, the foundation for any good album. The instrumentation that you find on this album will take you back to the good ol’ days of hip-hop, back when the beats were grimy and made for true emcees, while still giving you a sound that is so crisp that you know these sounds were made with lots of labor & love. They prove to be the perfect canvas for Die-Rek to compose his lyrical paintings. Speaking of those lyrics, Die-Rek is sick with it. It’s not that he blows you away with overly witty lines or some delivery that is so unique that you’ll never forget it; instead, it’s just solid lyricism with a voice that commands the listener’s attention. There is no filler with this project; every rhyme & word is spoken with purpose. The two singles for this album really sum up what you get with The Die-Version Project. “Grown Man Biz” is a gritty scratch-heavy track where Die-Rek shows his ability to wreck havoc on a mic like only a grown man can. And, “Remember” is a laid back track that is very musical where Rek walks you down memory lane & shows how he has matured over the years. You get both of those extremes and everything in-between with this album, and it’s just perfect synergy.
As you listen to this album and wrap your mind around all of the lyrics, you really find that there’s not a lot to find fault with. Die-Rek’s delivery is strong & consistent; the production is grimy, yet musical & crisp; and his lyrics are thoughtful and concise. There’s really not a lot more that you could ask for with this album, especially when you take into consideration the “free” price tag associated with it. About the only thing you could possibly find fault with is that Die-Rek doesn’t switch up his flow enough & could possibly be found monotonous at times.
For this to be Die-Rek’s debut offering, this is a well though out and put together project. From start to finish The Die-Version Project keeps you captivated and your head bobbing. This is a classic throwback to all of the great things that made hip-hop great while still pressing forward to the here & now. Die-Rek shows that he is perfectly capable as both an emcee and producer. You’d be foolish to not pick up this album and add it to your collection. By time you’re done with your first listen, I’m sure you’ll be fiending for more. Get a free download of The Die-Version Project right here at Sphereofhiphop.com.