Seattle's Sadistik needs a hug. Or maybe he just needs a fistful of Prozac. The rapper's latest EP, a collaboration with producer Kid Called Computer, plunges us into the depths of his fragile mind, and the results are akin to early Atmosphere and more recent work by Cage. That means it's brutally honest, cut-your-veins-and-let-your-emotions-gush-out hip hop.
Tunes like "Save Yourself" and "Wake Up Dead" channel the ghost of Joy Division's Ian Curtis, splicing together awesomely complex rhyme schemes with dark, introspective, and self-deprecating lyrics—like on the former track, which features the lines "Drain my blood and use it when you write a page/Describe the taste and tell me if I'm truly worth the ground I sleep in." Yeah, it's a bit emo, but it isn't cheesy. Further along the bleak trip, the rapper spits a bitter tale of love lost on "Black Roses," while "Bed of Flowers" flips the game with a first-person narrative about a crazed gunman on a massacre spree. Still, a little bit of light shines at the end of this killer release with closer "Ghost of the Machine" when he tells us "That no one ever dies even though our flesh is tarnished."
Sadistik plays the Palace Thursday, June 23, with Kristoff Krane, Bodi, Ordeal, and Codependents. $8/$13 for those aged 18–20.