Derek Christoff (aka D-Sisive) & The Arkeologists 'the d.ark tape' (mixtape)

Derek Christoff (aka D-Sisive) & The Arkeologists 'the d.ark tape' (mixtape)
Derek Christoff retired his D-Sisive moniker earlier this year, putting his notepad, pen, and mic in storage but now, he's sort of back with a stellar new release called the d.ark tape.

Christoff emphasizes that, while this isn't a D-Sisive record, it has its roots in his old life. "Urbnet and I were planning to release a new version of The Book celebrating its five-year anniversary, which was in May," he tells Exclaim! "We spent an evening interviewing some of the producers, one being Norman from the Arkeologists. Ark produced 'Kneecaps' and 'Laundry Room.' Those, along with 'Brian Wilson,' were extremely instrumental in people giving a shit about me."

Even though it's anchored by rich, thoughtful production and Christoff is as sharp an MC/storyteller as he's ever been, the d.ark tape has a gritty, no-frills feel. It was recorded on a $200 eight-track, every take is the first one, with little forethought for arrangement. It's not even mastered and its rawness excited Christoff.

"When I was at Norm's, he started playing beats and something just clicked," he continues. "We started messaging and decided to hang out. I went over the following week, again, listening to beats. It felt like 2007 again. I was back in the same spot where I wrote 'Kneecaps,' as Norm made the beat. A lot of memories were coming back. We started working on a new song, which led to another and another."

But what about retirement?

"My pension sucks," Christoff jokes. "I told my fiancée we'd be able to survive off scratch-and-win tickets and royalty cheques. Now, I have a baby on the way and only win free tickets. I got my last royalty cheque and realized I don't get any radio play or sell records."

Actually Christoff has been telling friends he's been writing rhymes since he retired D-Sisive and it seems like the d.ark tape could lead to more work with the Ark.

"I think so," Christoff says. "We've already talked about keeping the train moving. Truthfully, we made this album over the course of five days. Once we get in the zone, we fly."

See D-Sisive live at "The Baby Shower" with Motëm on July 11 at the Drake Underground in Toronto.

You can stream the d.ark tape below or pick it up over here.