Vast Aire | OX 2010: A Street Odyssey

Man Bites Dog (2011)
By CHRIS FARAONE  |  June 29, 2011
3.5 3.5 Stars

Vast Aire Ox 2010 

Despite the allegations of some subterranean rap ex-pats, Vast Aire hasn't weakened since his days of rearranging hip-hop with Cannibal Ox. In fact he's been sharpening his knives on several projects over the past decade, from his tragically slept-on Def Jux solo outing to his downright ignored Mighty Joseph gem alongside Karniege. Although it's an imperfect effort in some regards, the somewhat conceptual OX 2010: A Street Odyssey testifies to Vast's highly developed steez, and does so with complements from MCs who effortlessly jibe with his arcane rhyme selections. The King Kong of oddball references — from Puff the Magic Dragon to Josh Baskin and Tim Burton — Vast glides in unison with the likes of Raekwon ("Thor's Hammer"), Guilty Simpson ("The Verdict"), and Cappadonna. On "I Don't Care," the backdrop is superbly tailored to Cap and Vast's comparable off-kilter banter. Virginia beatmaker Kount Fif is the production hero here, coming through with delicious drum-and-horn hits on "Man of Steel," and a nod-riffic crack-rock-of-the-year contender in "Almighty Jose." Which serves the point: so-called underground hip-hop isn't dead. It's just that the genre no longer enjoys the company of poseurs who dug the scene more than the music. In this particular case, they sleep at their own peril.
Related: The Sounds | Something To Die For, Crystal Stilts | In Love With Oblivion, Junior Boys | It's All True, More more >
  Topics: CD Reviews , Music, Vast Aire, Vast Aire,  More more >
| More

Most Popular
Share this entry with Delicious
  •   THE TRIALS OF NADIA NAFFE  |  March 04, 2013
    Young, attractive, ambitious, conservative, and black, Nadia Naffe should have been a right-wing operative’s dream.
  •   HIP-HOP TRIVIA GROWS UP  |  February 26, 2013
    In their fourth year of operation, the Hip-Hop Trivia squad is finally taking the night (somewhat) seriously.
  •   OCCUPY DENIED DAY IN COURT  |  February 22, 2013
    It took more than a year for Suffolk County prosecutors to come to their senses.
  •   CZARFACE SOARS ABOVE THE CLOUDS  |  February 11, 2013
    This week 7LES and Inspectah Deck drop Czarface , a full-length work of adventurous genius revolving around a metal-clad protagonist who feeds on destruction.
  •   THE BPD ADDS INSULT TO INJURY  |  February 05, 2013
    At times, this kind of decision makes you wonder whether the BPD is saving its best awards for officers who've been involved in the death of civilians.

 See all articles by: CHRIS FARAONE