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Serengeti & Polyphonic Don't Give Up

On his 2006 LP, Dennehy, Chicago rapper Serengeti rhymed from the point of view of five different characters, like "Kevin," a working class Bears fan with a thick Illinois accent. After hearing Don't Give Up, 'Geti's collaboration with producer Polyphonic the Verbose, one is left wondering whether Kevin or his pals could have at least made a cameo on this project. Instead, intensely personal emo lyrics weigh too heavily on an album where the real star is Polyphonic's brilliantly textured production. With nods to microhouse, drum & bass, dub, and ambient sounds, Polyphonic's beats have an entirely unique, otherworldly feel to them. But the apocalyptic "Rambo" and a few other lyrically minimal songs notwithstanding, the tracks would perhaps be put to better use as instrumentals.

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