D.O. Down Home

D.O. Down Home
9
After being inspired to record a new album by a Classified song, conscious rapper and freestyle beast D.O. (a.k.a. Defy the Odds) enlisted the Maritimes rap star to produce that album. Collaborating and recording in Classified's Enfield, Nova Scotia home studio has resulted in an ode to Nova Scotia that features the flag on the front cover and local features throughout, harnessing Classified's East Coast mix of samples and live instruments to celebrate the province. The production is catchy and most songs feature singing, often from a guest but sometimes sampled.

"Down Home" references visits to family in the Maritimes with a slick sentimental hook from Chad Hatcher — perfect for the next Tim Horton's commercial! Spesh K joins D.O. to wax poetic about friends with benefits on "Neighbourhood," and Halifax stars Mic Boyd, J-Bru, Jake Boyd and (again) Chad Hatcher contribute to songs about growing up and going for your dreams, the other main theme of the album. Maestro, Saukrates and Joell Ortiz also guest.

At only ten tracks, the album is devoid of filler and over much too fast. Another brilliant rapper-producer team up from D.O., Down Home is not just a great introduction to the rapper, but his best album to date. (Nortstarr Entertainment)