"Mega Philosophy" is the latest album from veteran Queens emcee Cormega. The album features guest appearances from AZ, Redman, Styles P, Raekwon and others and is fully produced by legendary hip-hop producer Large Professor. It is set to be released on July 22, 2014 via Slimstyle Records.
1) A New Day Begins - After a quick skit, Cormega comes through and bodies an absolutely beautiful piano instrumental that is lacking drums of any kind. The absence of drums to drive the instrumental makes the song even better in my opinion since it forces you to focus on Cormega's rhymes (which are crazy by the way). Right out of the gate he is spitting fire -
"Under the sun, the vultures loomingDope shit. Too bad it's so short, but it works really nice as an intro track - 4.5/5
Hoping to consume a culture wounded
Boldly refusing to die, I'm show-n-provin
I embody what only few can
Wear sincerity, not the robe of Judas
My golden rule is - live no lie
I know truth is part of my focus, music
Art imitates life, growth included"
2) MARS (Dream Team) (featuring AZ, Redman and Styles P) - If you are like me, you are probably looking at the lineup on this song and praying that it doesn't disappoint. Well, worry no longer - this shit is flames. Cormega sets it off first and kicks some boastful rhymes before AZ comes in and proves yet again that he is one of the most underrated rappers in the industry. Redman follows up with another stellar verse before Styles P comes through and closes out the track. Oh and Large Professors beat is banging. - 4.5/5
3) Industry - This joint was one of the songs released in promotion of the album and its absolute fire. The beat is centered around a beautiful piano loop and some soulful backing vocals and Mega rips it as he shares his thoughts about the rap industry. He goes into detail about quite a few things that I doubt the labels and record execs want you to hear and I applaud Cory for both his boldness and for speaking the truth. Dope shit. - 5/5
4) More - Large Pro delivers another dope instrumental on this cut, this time with some soft guitars/strings, a prominent bass and shuffling drums. As far as the rhymes go, Cormega comes through and drops some gems while flowing nicely over the beat. I'm not sure who is singing on the hook, but she sounds really good as well. This album is something serious already. - 4.5/5
5) Reflection - This cut finds Mega rapping a capella, which is kind of a tradition on all of his albums since I remember him having a song like this on "The Realness", "The True Meaning" and "Born And Raised." Dope. - 4/5
6) D.U. (Divine Unity) (featuring Nature) - Cormega links up with fellow QB emcee Nature over a breezy instrumental with a sprinkle of soft piano keys and hard ass drums. Lyrically the song is just as good as the beat, with both Nature and Mega coming correct and kicking some positive rhymes while showing nice chemistry together on the mic. It's always great to hear them together on the same track after The Firm fiasco and Cormega's diss to Nature on "Never Personal". - 4.5/5
7) Honorable (featuring Raekwon) - This track was released quite a while back and it's gotten a good amount of play from me since then. The beat is dope, with a chopped up vocal sample and pianos over head nodding boom-bap drums, and both Cormega and Wu-Tang emcee Raekwon rip it as they kick some of their usual street rhymes. Can't go wrong with Mega and the Chef over a Large Pro instrumental. - 4.5/5
8) Rap Basquiat - This song was also released in promotion of the album and its yet another banger. The instrumental has a sort of playful feel to it, with a chopped up string and piano loop over lively boom-bap drums, and it's really dope. Lyrically Mega bodies the beat and spits some boastful bars in his most upbeat and aggressive delivery yet. This ones fire. - 5/5
9) Rise (featuring Maya Azucena) - Large Professor is really killing it with the production on this album and this track is no exception. The beat is just beautiful and Cormega sounds great over it as he raps about rising above the bullshit and giving his listeners a glimpse into the harsh realities of life in the ghetto without glorifying it. Yet another banger. - 5/5
10) Home (featuring Black Rob) - The beat on this cut is probably the darkest on the entire album, with Xtra P delivering an instrumental that sounds like something you would bump at night while featuring a prominent bass riff over boom-bap drums. As far as the rhymes go, Black Rob sets it off first and impresses with his verse before Cory comes in and closes out the track. While this cut is pretty dope, there are better songs on here in my opinion. - 4/5
11) Valuable Lessons - The final song on the album features a beautiful guitar based instrumental with some soulful vocals on the chorus. The production on this track is another of my favorites on the album and Cormega sounds great over it while dropping some more positive rhymes full of wisdom and knowledge. Very nice way to close out the album.- 5/5
I'm going to rate the album
4.5 / 5
because it's absolute fire. The production on the album is almost flawless, with Large Professor delivering a ton of beautiful instrumentals that kept my head nodding the whole time. Many of the beats are real mellow, with "Rap Basquiat" probably being the most energetic instrumental on the entire project. Lyrically this may be one of my favorite releases form Cormega, with the Queens emcee toning back the street rhymes in favor of more thought provoking verses. Don't get me wrong though, there are still many references to the street life on here, but Mega also uses this album to broaden his horizons and touches on other topics such as the state of hip-hop and the bullshit that goes on in the rap industry. Overall, this is easily one of my favorite projects of the year and is yet another quality entry in Cormega's already stellar discography.