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The Roots - Rising Down [2LP]



A128 The Pow Wow 
A129 Rising Down 
A130 Get Busy 
B131 @ 15 
B132 75 Bars (Black's Reconstruction) 
B133 Becoming Unwritten 
B134 Criminal 
C135 I Will Not Apologize 
C136 I Can't Help It 
C137 Singing Man 
C138 Unwritten 
D139 Lost Desire 
D140 The Show 
D141 Rising Up

Rising Down is the eighth studio album by American hip hop band The Roots, released April 28, 2008 on Def Jam Recordings. The album's title is adapted from William T. Vollmann's book Rising Up and Rising Down: Some Thoughts on Violence, Freedom and Urgent Means (2004). Expanding on the dark, dense production and political tone of Game Theory (2006), Rising Down features lyrical themes concerning issues of contemporary society, including violence, poverty, social and environmental climate, drugs, police corruption, and the music industry.

The album debuted at number six on the US Billboard 200 chart, selling 54,000 copies in its first week. It charted modestly in other countries and achieved moderate sales success. Upon its release, Rising Down received generally positive reviews from most music critics. Music critic Robert Christgau named it the ninth best album of 2008. The album has sold 171,000 copies in the United States.

The album's themes are dark, as on the preceding Game Theory, with Questlove referring to this album as "the most incendiary, political album of our career to date." In the same interview, he explains: "Add up the crime and high school drop-out rates in Philadelphia, plus being in your mid-30s and working 300 nights a year and this being an election year — yeah, all that’s what this album’s about.” The album's title comes from William T. Vollmann's 2004 book Rising Up and Rising Down: Some Thoughts on Violence, Freedom and Urgent Means. Similar to the book, the role of violence in human society is a central theme on the overtly political album; the album's political message reflects the violence in The Roots' home city of Philadelphia.

The album contains a large number of guest vocalists, particularly in comparison to previous Roots albums. The album features many of the same guest vocalists as Game Theory. Peedi Crakk, Malik B., Dice Raw, P.O.R.N. and Mercedes Martinez all make repeat appearances. DC rapper Wale appears on the album, following an invite stemming from a Black Thought-tribute track called "Work" featured on his 100 Miles & Running mixtape. Other notable emcees making appearances on the album include Native Tongues Posse members Mos Def, Talib Kweli, and Common, as well as Styles P and Saigon.