Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Mega Ran & Storyville - Soul Veggies

**Sound of phone ringing**
"Hey man!"
"Oh hello Penfold.  What can I do for you today?"
"Buddy, today is your lucky day!"
"My lucky day, huh?"
"You better believe it my friend!  What are you doing right now?  Are you sitting down?"
"Penfold, you're not calling me with another one of your cockamamie business ventures are you?"
"Cockamamie!?  You know what pal?  That hurts my feelings!  I come up with a fantastic new product that..."
"Look Penfold, I apologi..."
"Oh no you don't!  You've made your position abundantly clear!  Now let me finish!  I come up with a fantastic new product that is guaranteed to make an obscene amount of money, and the very first person I call because he is such a good friend of mine spits in my face!  Well I never!"
"Pen, don't be like that.  I'm sorry, alright?  Come on man, you know that I didn't mean to hurt your feelings.  It's just that most of your ideas..."
"Okay.  Some of your big ideas are more than a little crazy, or at the very least unrealistic."
"Listen ol' buddy, ol' pal.  Ideas for world-altering products have to be crazy and unrealistic!  That's how progress is made!"
"I suppose you're right Penfold.  Now tell me about your latest idea."
"Do you promise to keep an open mind?"
"Yes Penfold, the gates of my mind are wide open.  Now will you please tell me what has you so excited?"
"Good.  Apology accepted.  Let me ask you a question.  Do you buy food based on it's nutritional value?"
"Yes.  I've been studiously analyzing food labels ever since my doctor informed me I had high cholestorol.  I end up buying a lot of vegetables."
"Excellent!  Now are you familiar with a line of books called 'Chicken Soup For The Soul'?"
"As a matter of fact I have a few of those books on a shelf in my office right now."
"I thought you might!  So tell me.  What is stopping us from selling a whole range of vegetables that are labeled as both nutritional and good for the soul?"
"What is stopping us?  The FDA for starters."
"Nonsense!  The FDA will love Soul Veggies!  All we have to do is invest in massive tracts of fertile land, hire an army of workers, plant a bunch of seeds, and then sit back and watch the profits roll in!  Sure we need to find a way to distribute our Soul Veggies cheaply across the nation, but I figure we'll deal with our logistical concerns later."
"Yeah buddy?"
**Sound of phone being hung up**

Waveriders, waveriders, waveriders!  It's that time once again!  Yes indeed!  It's time for me, your loyal seeker of quality music to let you, my voluntary/involuntary readership know about the latest release from the prolific and amazing artist known as Mega Ran.  If you have been frequenting this site for a while you know that I am completely enamored with everything this musical dynamo produces, and this new album is no different.

Soul Veggies is the title of the brand spankin' new release.  It is a full length collaborative album between Mega Ran and Storyville.  These two artists have been working together for years, but Soul Veggies marks the first time they have unleashed a full album's worth of material at one time.  I'd just like to a moment to personally thank them for their efforts.  This album aligns perfectly with the kind of hip-hop I want to listen to right now.

Do you like driving percussive beats?  Of course you do.  Listen to the songs "React" and "The Opening Act".  Does an album with varied production appeal to you?  Check out the different approaches displayed on the commercialized "Rappin' About Rappin", the highly melodic "Waste My Time", and the sly "Medici Lions".  Is it a prerequisite for an album to have high profile guest artists to draw your attention?  No problem here!  Among others Small Professor produced the song "Artillery", and Wise Intelligent of Poor Righteous Teachers has a killer verse on the song "I Know Who I Am".  How about imaginative lyrics?  Here is Storyville's first verse from one of my favorite songs on Soul Veggies, "Senility".

Explosive, osteoporosis so when I walk, it looks like film shot in stop motion / Almost there but my sweater's too heavy / Even in warm weather get home before the sun setting / Living one step from the gates of heaven / That's why my medicine cab looks like CVS aisle seven / Vitamin c, d, a and niacin, iron supplements arranged by whatever weekday it is / I'm still sharp as a whip and hip to the flim-flam / Take no jibber jabber, respect is what I demand / I'm a boss pass the applesauce and the cottage cheese / Oatmeal cookies and remote for the TV / Turn me up in the headphones so I can get this verse laid / Nevermind, I'll just adjust my hearing aides / Reading glasses on and I'm tearing up the page / Literally, because sometimes I get the shakes

And here is Mega Ran's verse from the soulful "Til Morning Comes".

The morning comes, I'm gonna step on the gas / so that any self doubt is now left in the past / Broke the rear view mirror, tossed it out / Unable to look back, now the caution's out / In the win doing 85, might see me blazin' by / Glory but I'm wavin' high, clearer than 1080i / Not yet where I want to be, but I'm gonna be / Even better than I was, back when you wanted me / What's become of me, no one could have figured it / Thought it was a phase, yet I couldn't get rid of it / Doc said I'm thrown off, beats gettin' towed off / No more cold calls, now I'm my own boss / Tryin' to bring it back, rather take it forward / Four words for you, please show more nerve / Couldn't stop me, they tried to discredit me / Boy you can't deny this is heaven

Waveriders Soul Veggies is an album that you don't want to pass up.  It is spectacularly entertaining from start to finish, it's seams are bursting with quality lyrical content, and it is a great point of entry to the massive Mega Ran back catalogue!  Storyville's 2008 album Escape Plan is also well worth adding to your collection as well.  If you have been sleeping on these two artists, it's time to wake up!

- Penfold

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