Vordul Mega

Megagraphitti should help Vordul Mega overcome the stigma of being "the guy in Cannibal Ox who's not Vast Aire." Cannibal Ox is known for its 2002 El-P-produced underground hip-hop classic The Cold Vein, and Aire's presence on the work is more memorable, if only for his distinctive, menacing flow. Mega's voice, on the other hand, can be a bit thin, but on Megagraphitti, he's full of charming bravado and displays an ear for dramatic beats. The album eclipses his 2004 solo debut, The Revolution of Yung Havoks, with tracks such as "Trigganomics" and "Opium Scripts," which boast menacing, cinematic imagery. Other highlights include a pair of Cannibal Ox reunion songs; "In the Mirror," a rousing compilation of clever boasts; and "AK-47," an eerie, dreamy rumination on the ways to protect your neck whether you're in the inner city or feudal Japan. El-P is back on "Keep Living," but the chaotic, unfocused track lacks the dramatic urgency he usually brings. In fact the album's final third is a confusing mishmash of radio-friendly drivel ("Beautiful") and slow, pointless filler ("Peanut Butta Ups"). Still, when Megagraphitti is hitting its spots, it evokes Cannibal Ox's most dynamic moments, making Mega's case as an underrated member of the group.


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