The Dead Sirius

In music’s most shameful days of unencumbered materialism and greed, the praises of said sins proclaimed by hip-hop artists, country pop stars, boy bands and rock ’n’ roll acts alike, it is like a breath of fresh air for a long-distance runner to hear someone sing about things that really matter. Dead Sirius, or simply Dead to his fans and friends, has chosen an appropriate stage-name given the lyrical content: the tragic deaths of his parents, drug addiction, redemption and spirituality. In “Day of the Dead,” Sirius combines a rhythmic poppy chorus with verses that conjure early Wu-Tang, singing For years I pushed hard/The world pushed me back/ I couldn’t face me in the mirror/It took me looking back. The album features tracks produced by the aforementioned Wu-Tang and appearances by The Dog Pound and DJ Quik, the two collaborating here for the first time ever. The hard-won life lessons contained in Sirius’ seventh release separate this young — he’s 31 — and likely genius writer and performer from so many of his peers focused on the problem rather than the solution.