Oh I know what you’re thinking: “Isaiah Toothtaker? But he’s not Canadian, why are you featuring him on the hill?!?!?!” First of all, that’s a very agressive tone to be taking considering we’re talking about someone who’s been in some 400 streetfights – I hope for your sake Isaiah never reads this. Secondly, this new EP of his is entirely produced by Montreal’s Sixtoo (also known as Prison Garde), former 1/2 of monumental underground duo The Sebutones and all-around Halifax rap legend (an aside: I love the Soundcloud bio for this EP: “…before leaving his old moniker behind for a life lived in the shadows of Halifax, Nova Scotia—a city that is, in fact, no longer a city”. Wait, what? THEN WHERE AM I?). The last point to be made about this EP is the most important – it’s fucking great.
I’d previously heard a couple of Isaiah’s songs and knew he was a talented MC with a rather intriguing story (to say the least), but it took the combination of Sixtoo’s involvement and a free download of the EP from Anticon (in related news, Anticon is still a thing – that’s welcome news) to get me to check out one of his projects in full. I wish I hadn’t waited so long, as this is truly one of the best albums I’ve heard in a while.
Sixtoo’s production is incredibly infectious, and a perfect example of how the current trend of 80’s funk & R&B sounds influencing electronic music can be used for good. And Isaiah sounds like he was made to flow over these beats, alternating between melodic and ominous, and darn near stealing the spotlight on each song despite guest shots from Western Tink, ShowYouSuck, Antwon & the legendary Murs. His sing song style on EP opener Labyrinth seems to be in complete opposition to his threatening persona on the Message-sounding Point Of No Return, but they both work really well.
I’m guessing folks have become one of Isaiah Toothtaker’s 400 adversaries for lesser offences than refusing to check out a fantastic EP that would cost them zero dollars, so don’t take that chance. Seriously, grab this one folks, you won’t regret it.