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Tical 0: The Prequel

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Method Man
Method Man: Monique Bunn/Retna

With Hollywood knocking (this summer’s ”Soul Plane” and a Fox sitcom), perhaps Method Man’s focus is elsewhere. Meth’s rugged rhymes still flow with effortless finesse on Tical 0: The Prequel, but for the first time, he loses his identity. On ”Act Right,” he scolds other MCs for what amounts to his own primary blunder: ”If you’re a rapper, don’t ever ride the passenger seat.” Relying too heavily on guests (from Ludacris to Snoop Dogg), these tracks pathetically simulate the signature sound of each featured rapper. That laziness, combined with his adolescent musings on ho’s and drugs, reveals an artist who seems to be phoning this one in from his latest movie set.