June 24, 2008

Method Man - Tical 0: The Prequel (May 18, 2004)


When Method Man announced his third album, Tical 0: The Prequel, he teased it by stating The Rza was going to play a much bigger role than he did on Tical 2000: Judgement Day. As such, Wu-Tang stans like myself became excited about the possibilities. I know I was personally thinking that if this disc was anything like Tical, Meth's debut solo project that I think is much better than most folks give credit for, then I would be happy.

Then Def Jam, Meth's label, revealed that Sean "Puffy" Combs was lined up to executive produce the disc. Ostensibly, this was done in order to move units, but I don't recall Puff Daddy being that much of a huge seller in fucking 2004. Wasn't this in between the rap and pop portions of his career? I mean, the chicks in Danity Kane hadn't even been born yet in 2004.

And then The Rza revealed that he had only two songs on the album. (One of which, "This Thing", which featured The Rza and La the Darkman, I believe, was eventually cut from the disc altogether, and although it can be easily found on the Interweb, I don't recommend wasting your precious time.)

And then "What's Happenin'", the first single, was released to radio and video outlets, sparking almost no reaction whatsoever, although I always thought it was funny that Meth specifically shouts out the music video director Little X even though its video was actually directed by Diane Martel, who also did the clip for Meth's breakthrough single "Bring The Pain".

And then Tical 0: The Prequel actually hit shelves. Sure, it sold over one million copies, but I don't know anybody who would admit to owning this album besides myself. Even Method Man himself has disavowed all knowledge of this album, claiming that Puffy's executive production caused him to go places that he wouldn't normally have gone if he were making the disc he wanted to make.

And then it was revealed online that The Rza had actually supplied the majority of the production for the first cut of Tical 0: The Prequel, but Def Jam vetoed every single fucking beat. You know, because Def Jam knows best, and nobody wants to hear Method Man, a Wu-Tang Clan member, rhyme over beats created by The Rza, the primary producer for the Wu-Tang Clan, right?

Seriously, what the fuck?

1. INTRO (FEAT THE RZA)
Sure, having The Rza present your album in its intro is a good idea, if the Rza actually had shit to do with your album. This just angries up the blood.

2. THE PREQUEL (FEAT STREETLIFE)
Streetlife's brief appearance includes an ultimatum for Meth: "Third LP/better be tight!". Sadly, Method Man was distracted by a shiny object, and as a result, was unable to comply.

3. SAY WHAT (FEAT MISSY ELLIOTT)
Missy goes two for two in terrible Wu-Tang collaborative efforts. This song is so bad, I'm almost positive Meth deliberately leaves it off of his resume, not unlike actors when they know one of their past flicks was fucking lame.

4. WHAT'S HAPPENIN' (FEAT BUSTA RHYMES)
So are we ever going to see a song without any guests? Meth did his best to bring back the "Bring The Pain" vibe by setting the video for "What's Happenin'" in a subway car, but overall this track does not work. Of course, the fact that it keeps popping up on the soundtrack for Def Jam Fight For NY didn't help much. Oh yeah, Busta's on here, but I don't give a fuck, and neither should you.

5. THE MOTTO
This song wouldn't be so bad if the instrumental were more engaging. Oh, and if the rhymes were different. Oh, and if the song never actually existed. It would be much better that way.

6. WE SOME DOGS (FEAT REDMAN, SNOOP DOGG, & DENAUN PORTER)
Not even Reggie can save this song. A while back, when Meth and Red announced a follow-up collaborative effort after the success of Blackout!, they hinted that a third pothead rapper would be brought into the fold, and Snoop was rumored to be that pothead. If this was supposed to be a dry run, then these three don't even make it to the goddamn track.

7. THE TURN (FEAT RAEKWON)
The lone Rza production, and it isn't even any good. Raekwon, in full-on narcoleptic mode, is completely wasted, as is Meth, who comes off as if he has never rhymed to a Prince Rakeem beat in his life. This is just sad. I once took the title of this song and appropriated it for one of my short film scripts, though. Not that you care, but I do, and that's all that matters.

8. TEASE (FEAT CHINKY)
Seriously? The fuck is this shit?

9. RODEO (FEAT LUDACRIS)
I imagine that the sound engineers, Meth's weed carriers, Luda's mother, and even the guy that delivered the pizzas to the studio all advised Method Man that this song was a horrible idea. I feel it may be time for an intervention.

10. BABY COME ON (FEAT KARDINAL OFFISHALL)
I have to admit, I was not expecting Kardinal Offishall as a guest. I am concerned with Meth's obsession with women on Tical 0: The Prequel, though. You know, there are other topics to rhyme about, man. Tell Puffy to get out of your ear and come up with your own fucking ideas!

11. WHO YA ROLLIN' WIT (FEAT STREETLIFE)
Speaking of which, if Biggie were still alive, I have no doubt that Puffy would have tried to strongarm him into rhyming over shitty beats like this. So you should look on the bright side, which, to make it easier for my two readers, if whichever side this album does not appear on.

12. NEVER HOLD BACK (FEAT E3 & SAUKRATES)
This song isn't very good, but it is intriguing for two reasons. For one, if anybody else besides me is amused whenever Redman refers to himself as the tenth member of the Wu-Tang Clan, as he is prone to do these days, Meth returns the favor by shouting out Redman's crew Gilla House repeatedly on this track's intro. Secondly, Meth's claim that Def Jam doesn't create stars, "they just sign them", is the second such reference I've heard in song in the past few months, and I think it's funny that Meth has the balls to bash his label on his actual album, as opposed to a mixtape. (Redman mentions that "Def Jam lost its soul/They forgot how to build an artist" on "Saga Continues" off of that Ill At Will Volume One mixtape I reviewed a while back.)

13. THE SHOW
Well, at least it's short.

14. ACT RIGHT
Um...no.

15. AFTERPARTY (FEAT GHOSTFACE KILLAH)
There really is no point to this song, but it's funny and enjoyable (to a point), so by default "Afterparty" is the best song on this bullshit album. Which isn't saying much, I know. But at least U-God isn't anywhere to be seen.

16. CROOKED LETTER I (FEAT STREETLIFE)
I have nothing to say about this piffle.

17. RIDIN' FOR OUTRO (FEAT BLACK ICE)
Oh goody, a spoken word outro. Max loves those.

FINAL THOUGHTS: There's a Depeche Mode song called "Useless" (off of Ultra) that sounds almost note for note like a Garbage track. I had to check the liner notes to make sure Butch Vig didn't produce the song. It's so note perfect, Shriley Manson could cover the song live in concert and everyone would just probably think it was one of their B-sides. And just like that Depeche Mode song, Tical 0: The Prequel is fucking useless.

BUY OR BURN? Are you kidding? I want both my time and my fucking money back.

BEST TRACKS: None.

-Max

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10 comments:

  1. the most felonious vocalist in the wide world of showbusinessJune 24, 2008

    I also own this trash. The only good thing about it is when Meth calls somebody his "main shit stain". I appropriated that phrase for a year or so. Method Man started his career with a great sense of humor but eventually, culminating with this album, became a full blown clown.

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  2. AnonymousJune 24, 2008

    Man that shit only went gold. I hated the Wu shit from 2003-2004. Inspectah Deck-The Movement, Raekwon-Lex Diamonds, Ghostface Pretty Toney, Method Man Tical-0, 0-4. I didn't even bother with Masta Killah's album fearing it would be another let down.

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  3. AnonymousJune 24, 2008

    I didn't even bother with Masta Killah's album fearing it would be another let down.


    ^big mistake right there partner, but I can certainly understand why you made that decision. No Said Date is a classic wu album-you should check it out

    as for tical 0, I've never listened to any tracks off the album and going by the reviews I've read, I have no compulsion to do so.

    Nice to see you reviewing more wtc as I requested, Max. Just a shame that most of the albums are "drink coasters"

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  4. i heard a few songs of this on the internet when it came out and felt like burning my ears shut

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  5. I totaly agree with your review Max. Tical 0 is horrible, disappointing etc etc.

    It doesn't even deserve a burn...

    -Kay-

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  6. Strangely enough, I've never heard this album and now I never will. Meth only has 4 albums under Def Jam since '94? I wonder, is it his usual laziness or Def Jam's usual screw ups?

    Vincent
    thimk.wordpress.com

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  7. AnonymousMay 19, 2013

    I like "The Turn", it's a bit repetetive though ain't it? Does rza's original version of the album exist anywhere?

    Anonymous get NO SAID DATE asap. it's great.

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  8. I thought The Motto was meh, Rodeo was hilarious in how wack it is, Afterparty is silly, I actually like Whats Happenin', but overall a complete waste of time and a waste of natural resources.

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  9. I think this might be the worst Wu-Tang solo I've heard... only 5 songs I kept off of the album which is The Show, Afterparty, The Turn, Whats Happenin, & The Motto... and even those arent that great... pretty sure I kept more songs from Lex Diamond Story which i thought was pretty bad.

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  10. I kinda liked The Turn, Afterparty & What's Happenin'. But, yeah, the rest's absolute sewage.

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