After leaking the first track of his Castlevania hip-hop tribute album, Random (aka Mega Ran) has dropped a 12-track coffin full of awesome on the world with an album called Castlevania: The Nocturnal Cantata.
Featuring the talents of Dr. Awkward among other guest rappers, Nocturnal Cantata manages the near-impossible task of telling the story of vampires and whip-wielding vampire hunters through hip-hop without once veering into horrorcore territory.
Instead, Random keeps the focus on quick and steady lyrics peppered with references to Richter Belmont, Dracula, and - naturally - Alucard.
Unlike Random's other albums - like Black / White Materia - the best tracks on Nocturnal Cantata are the ones that he handles by himself like Aria of the Bloodline, 100 Years, and Sins of the Father. The other tracks are all enjoyable in their own right, but there's something less familiar about their style that fans of Random's other work might find off-putting.
Dance of Pales is the only other track to feature Random without The Ranger or Sammus - and it breaks from the vampire-and-Belmont theme of the album to deliver another autobiographical look at Random's life delivered through rap. It's a fitting end to the album, but it seems a bit out of place in something billed as a "hip-hop Opera".
Anyway - if you like Castlevania, you could certainly do worse than dropping $7.00 on the album. If you're looking to save some coin and still support Mega Ran, you can - of course - download the singles for $1 each.