This one here’s gotta be one of the dopest mixtapes we’ve heard in a bit and it was made in a basement! Recorded by 8-track and every track on the project is a first take. the d.ark Tape is a collaborative effort from Toronto producer The Arkeologists (Norman Krates) and fellow Toronto native Derek Christoff (formally known as D-Sisive). These two have a history together, having worked together in 2007 on D-Sisive’s debut record The B.O.O.K. But technically, D-Sisive is now retired.
This is a 10 track mixtape which is the result of one days work and a lot of reminiscing about 2007 and their past work together. The tape really is underground hip-hop at its finest as they have not done any promotion for it and all the tracks are raw first takes, not even mastered and all recorded on an 8-track! The production by The Arkeologists really compliments Derek’s gritty, nonchalant delivery. Definitely worth a listen, stream the album below and make a purchase for the cause for a mere five US bucks!
In 2007, I walked into a basement that would change my art forever. I realize that sentence is super dramatic, and equally as rape-y, but it’s the only way I can describe it. It was dark. Small. Low ceilings. Filled with cigarette smoke. I sat down on the couch, while Norman Krates [The Arkeologists] prepped his MPC2000 for our first session.
I ate a submarine sandwich. He rolled a joint. I swallowed a Percocet. He chopped up a sample. And I began writing what would become Kneecaps. A song, along with Laundry Room, that would make critics and music listeners look past the court jester of an artist I once was. A song that would literally change my life.
In 2013, I returned to the same basement to conduct an interview with Norman for a special 5 year anniversary release of my debut record, The B.O.O.K. While listening to him reminisce, I began having flashbacks of those sessions. I felt like 2007 again. A few days later I went back to hang out. Hanging out would result in Norm playing me beats. Which would result in me writing The Reunion Tour. We sat and listened to that song for an hour straight. It was 2007 again. We decided to keep going till we hit ten songs. All raw. All songs recorded on a $200 8-track in one day. All first takes. Embrace the imperfections. No promotion. Keep it basement.
The D.Ark Tape.