The Revolution Of Yung Havoks

Artist: Vordul MegaTitle: The Revolution Of Yung HavoksRating: 3 1/2 StarsReviewed by: Bill Low-Key Heinzelman

As one half of Cannibal Ox, Vordul Mega has always been the quiet and overlooked member in comparison to Vast Aire. While most critics raved about Vast's zany wordplay and EL-P's spacey production on their debut release The Cold Vein, Vordul's role was often forgotten. Now with his solo release The Revolution Of Yung Havoks (Nature Sounds), Vordul is out for respect, something which he should achieve with his satisfying debut.

Vordul's strong points lie within his ability to draw you into his cosmic universe. Continuing in the tradition of Cannibal Ox, Vordul's style is one of a kind and one that definitely appeals to his underground fan base. But unlike Vast Aire, who sometimes goes off in a nonsensical tirade, Vordul keeps it more street oriented. The hood tales of "Blade" epitomizes this perfectly, as Belief's arrangement of choppy keys provides a gritty atmosphere for Vordul to work off of. Blockhead's haunting drums and eccentric horns also impress on the standout track "Struggles". Vordul's gloomy look inside urban life is accentuated by his witty wordplay and syrupy flow. Vordul also receives some welcomed help from some friends along the way. C Rayz Walz cooks up a hot 16 on "Spitamatic", while Masta Killa (“Hard Times”) and Jean Grae (“Believe”) lend their vocals for each track's hook.

While The Revolution Of Yung Havoks does get repetitive at times with generic offerings like "In The Hood" and "Holla Ill", the album manages to overcome such shortcomings. With Vordul Mega you know what you are getting before you even open the album, and it is this reliance on giving his fan base what they want that makes his debut a success. Even though many were quick to label Vordul as Vast Aire's lowly side kick, in the end Vordul is having the last laugh. With The Revolution Of Yung Havoks, Vordul steps out of Vast's ample shadow and produces a better album than most expected.