Throughout his young career, D.O. has done it his way, using his artistic skill, creative vision and business acumen to book hundreds of shows across North America (including several cross-Canada tours) and sell thousands of CDs. That’s a quick snapshot of what D.O. (aka Defy the Odds) has brought to the Rap game. And, he’s just getting started!
This summer, D.O. will release his sophomore album, Stay Driven, featuring production from JUNO-nominated producers Classified, Slakah the Beatchild, Marco Polo and Metty the Dert Merchant from Sweatshop Union. Key singles include “This Grind” (more than 20,000 plays on MySpace) , “Unfinished Business” and “Now I Understand” featuring Classified.
I had a chance to hear the album today. From the album's intro (D.O. doing the sound effects of a car going from 1st to 5th gear) I could tell I was in for something a little different.
When the beat dropped on 'Watch Out' I could have sworn I was going to hear Bob Seger scream out "Just take those old records off the shelf!" LOL, I don't know if I was hearing things but the piano on the track sounds a lot like the piano on 'That Old Time Rock and Roll' to me; which probably made me enjoy the song all the more when the bass line came in.
D.O. seems to have a lot of those old records off the shelf and on the turntable, as he references his countryman D.L. Incognito and Hip Hop Legend Rakim Allah.
On 'Now I Understand' D.O. opens up with a sort of manifesto first verse:
"It wasn't for the fame, the reason that I got into the game, wasn't to add a few dollars to my name, only wanted to come and spit flames, be like Rakim and rock a phat gold chain, but now a few things changed, and it ain't the same when i step off stage, cuz when they holla, say my rhymes made a change, so its different when I sit down to write a page, think it through, can't come with any rhymes tho, much more than just a punch line flow, its crunch time tho, take a look what's going on, everyday a child lost as another mother mourns, yeah, so now i understand, travel coast to coast, then reach different lands, microphone in my hand, and, only difference is now we got the plan."
D.O. and Slakah the Beatchild have A Tribe Called Quest chemistry on 'Small Town'. This is a track I can definitely relate to, growing up in Brampton, "we be shooting hoops til they took down the rims, over at the park where I got my first kiss".
The Bully interlude with D.O. beat-boxing blends perfectly into The Bully track, a song produced by Toronto's own Marco Polo that details a young boy victimized by bullying. D.O. doesn't sugar coat anything on this track, showing Slick Rick-esque story-telling skills, all the way to grim ending. Perhaps the best song on the album, in my humble opinion.
Stay On It stands out because it's that kind of track that you can wake up, get dressed, and go out and conquer the world to. "Ambition as far as my eyes can see."
Music to 'Stay Driven' to for real, D.O.'s sophomore effort reminds me of Killer Mike's I Pledge Allegiance to the Grind because it stresses perseverance through struggle.
After my first listen to D.O.'s album, those were the tracks that stood out to me. I have to say he is definitely up there with Toronto's finest. With beats from some of T.O.'s best (Marco Polo, Slakah the Beatchild, Classified etc.) and rhymes that actually say something, D.O. is sure to turn some heads and open some ears (and hopefully wallets!) Keep doing your thing homay, or as you'd say STAY ON IT! (pause)
This Grind: his first single
For more info on this multi-talented lyricist, check out www.doyall.com or www.myspace.com/ddoto.
STAY DRIVEN IS SET TO RELEASE ON JULY 7TH
Catch D.O. at the RELEASE PARTY AT REVIVAL THAT NIGHT AT 10PM SHARP!