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The Cold Vein

5.0 out of 5 stars 23 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Audio CD (5 July 2010)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: ADA Global
  • ASIN: B00005BIVW
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 51,786 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Iron Galaxy
  2. Ox Out The Cage
  3. Atom
  4. A B-Boys Alpha
  5. Raspberry Fields
  6. Straight Off The D.I.C.
  7. Vein
  8. The F-Word
  9. Stress Rap
  10. Battle For Asgard
  11. Real Earth
  12. Ridiculoid
  13. Painkillers
  14. Pigeon
  15. Bonus Track

Product Description

Product Description

Cannibal Ox ~ Cold Vein

Cannibal Ox's Vast Aire Kramer and Vordul Megala Shamar have struck a cold vein in hip-hop and come up with digital gold. Digging for dignity in an iron galaxy, to raise human tragedy beyond the small black print of the crime pages, these rap Vikings write rhymes in the blood of the slain, spit-sacred thought in the service of salvation. With production by Company Flow's El-P (who also appears on the group's ghetto-vaudeville theme tune "Ox out the Cage" and the industry-sniping "Ridiculoid"), the backdrop to their rap reality-myth is a drone-heavy matrix of gritty, atomised funk and reconstructed beats. Alaska and Cryptic of Atoms Family (the larger group to whom Can Ox pledge allegiance) guest on "Atom", colliding with their compadres like charged molecules. While on "A B-Boy's Alpha" Vast and Vordul present a rugged primer to the strife life. Powered by a paralysing banshee-wail, "Raspberry Fields" douses the Beatles with brown acid and dumps them on the baddest corner on the block for a battle to the death with the flesh-eating MCs. Closer "Pigeon" unlocks the rock box, pitching bowed electric guitar with redemptive organ chords, while Vast takes flight with words that lick the air with violence and Vordul spreads melanin wings to shield his fellow warriors from horror. No bad blood here, just cold veins locked in pitched battle to rend the world from the grip of iron, and release its populous like ions. --Chris Campion

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Vinyl
It's very difficult to find words to describe this album. It's an epic science fiction space opera, a unique, unearthly soundscape that makes me ache with pleasure to hear it. If the Gods listened to hip hop in Valhalla or on Mount Olympus, they would be listening to this. It sounds futuristic, yet old as the dawn of the Universe. It is the sound of science. It is the sound of quarks colliding. It sounds disjointed, distorted, warped, but seems simultaneously to fit together perfectly, elements of beats and rhymes meshing together to create unimaginable new musical compounds. It is dirty yet pure. It is beautiful yet ugly. It must be heard.
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Format: Audio CD
Too often I've read over-zealous reviews on here and have been disappointed after buying and playing the cd a few times. I agree with the person above: the same thing happened to me a couple of years ago when I originally picked up 'The Cold Vein' - I foolishly left the cd languishing at the bottom of my pile after first listening 'cos I couldn't get my head around the production/beats or even the rhymes. It pains me now to think how long it took me to give Can Ox another spin.

Put simply, this is without a doubt one of the best albums I own, certainly the best hip-hop album. It's worth buying for 'Iron Galaxy' alone - surely the best intro to any hip-hop album ever?

Calling it a genius, monumental, genre-redefining piece of art is no exaggeration; the drony, inspired production by El-P is futuristic and yet, sounds so deep and earth-shattering as if it's been around forever, waiting for you to catch on; the beats are really tastefully chopped up and rearranged; Vaudel and Vast's rhymes and subject matter are based on their real experiences of living in NYC, but are expansive and intelligent and thought-provoking enough for anyone to get into..and their different styles do indeed perfectly compliment each other.

"Put a mic in front of me, and I'm gonna bless it,

hummingbird style, seventy times in one second."

All great art is hard to put into words so I'll shut up now and just say: "BUY THIS NOW!".
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Format: Audio CD
I don't even know where to begin reviewing this album because words are not enough. Suffice to say that if you want proof that not all rap artists are gun obsessed misogynists than this is the album for you.
Ok. Lyrically, this thing is up there with the best. In fact its beyond that - this thing is lyrically 10 levels (at least) above the best rap album you've ever listened to - believe me. If Shakespear or Wordsworth rapped, they'd produce lyrical poetry like this. Examples:
"Birds of the same feather flock together/conjested on a majestic street corner/thats a short time goal for most of em cos most of em would rather flap they wings and hover over greater things" - Pigeon
"Im not made of organics/not even wires/and to the common fowl the phoenix is sire/most highest of all things to ever have wings" - Scream Phoenix
"Im not greedy but to hold your heart I gotta put my hand in.....this is more than just a song/and when he's treating you wrong im more than just a shoulder to cry on" - The F Word
Production? El-P - the greatest producer in hip-hop today BAR NONE. Forget avarage beats here: strings, electro, funk, piano, Beatles samples ('Strawberry Fields' meets acid beats!) - this album rocks.
Buy this album now. Its flawless. 'The F-Word' is enough to make anyone cry if they've ever been unlucky in love. 'Pigeon' and 'Scream Phoenix' can lift even the most depressed heart out of darkness. 'B-boys Alpha' and 'Ridiculoid' just stomp effortlessly.
Albums like this come along once a lifetime if you're lucky. Capture it now. Its albums like this that defy genres, make you passionate about music again and make me wish that Amazon would allow me to give marks out of a hundred - but it still wouldnt be enough.
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Format: Audio CD
The cycle of music causes such things to happen. Those who once were the trailblazers become the establishment. So, while Public Enemy, De La Soul, Wu Tang Clan have all joined hip hops upper echelons, consequently their work has become less important. This transition allows for a new breed of hungry underground artists to come to the fore. Many will cite Eminem and even 50 Cent as the hottest prospects. They are not. Most of them appear to coming out of the ashes of the Rawkus label, but the brightest sparks of all are emerging from the red-hot Def Jux label. Take two of the most intelligent and gifted MCs to emerge for a long time and combine them with the hip hop world's most innovative producer and you end up with not only a remarkable hip hop album but, in this writer's opinion, the best LP ever made.
Vast Aire and Vordul Megalah introduce a New York that the listener may have forgotten existed after so many bourgeois releases by the likes of The Strokes. As early as three minutes into the first track, Vast Aire gives the listener an idea of the exactly how dire their situation is, "Boy meets world? Of course his Pop's is gone, what you figure? / that chalky outline on the ground is a father-figure." It is the grim position that Cannibal Ox find themselves in that dominates the album, on 'Stress Rap' they admit, "You love New York / But New York don't love you." A sample is played mid-way through the opening track reminding the listener that, "You are one of the few predator species that preys even on itself."
However, this isn't a cynical attempt at proving they are from some rough streets in an endeavour to add some B Boy posturing. Cannibal Ox describe themselves, and others in their position as 'pigeons', feeding off scraps of pizza crust.
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