Mekalek Live and Learn

As producer for the incredible Los Angeles-based Time Machine, Mekalek has been rather impressive in both the beats and cuts categories, so there’s great potential for this solo effort. Live and Learn starts off amazingly with a triple knockout when it comes to beats, and Mek’s Time Machine MCs Jaysonic and Comel and the mighty Percee P greatly increase the nod factor with their microphone talents. It’s the passionate and attention-grabbing flow that these MCs, along with Shawn Jackson, where Mek’s tracks reach their full potential because they compliment the creative beats best rather than some of the ho-hum voices that come off as flat, which there are a few, sadly. It’s cool to get deep and serious and spit truth on the mic, but they tend to make Live and Learn a downer when Mekalek is best known for turning a party out. Proof that you can send a message to the kids and still put a dance in your step is the terrific "2 for Me, 2 For You,” where Starrs & Murph try to get their lives together but to an upbeat tempo with a great vocal hook. Moments like this definitely outweigh the low glitches but it’s a shame there are any blemishes when Mek strays from his trusty posse. Still, Live and Learn shows signs that Mekalek’s production is becoming even tighter then before, so if anything it should be a strong indication that the next Time Machine record will be off the coat rack. (Glow-in-the-Dark)