Some folks insist that Cali mic mathematicians like Wildchild, Declaime, Kazi and Medaphoar are indistinguishable, that all around the Madlib / Oxnard / Stones Throw indie-rap axis, it’s the same song. Granted, they share some common stylistic traits-smoked-out beats by the brothers Jackson (Madlib and Oh No), and voluminous lyrical volleys carried by clipped cadences. But personally, I’ve never had any issues with such similarities because a) I dig this signature style, and b) Their stuff doesn’t actually sound that similar. Conveniently, Medaphoar’s treat-filled debut LP Push Comes to Shove (Stones Throw), presents ammunition for both arguments. Fulfilling the steez you expect out of this stable are reliably kinetic cuts like “Serious” and “What U in It For?” Elsewhere, however, Mr. MED expands his click’s artistic range in methods both sentimental (the plaintive reminiscing of “Can’t Hold On” and his impassioned love letter to rap, “Special”) and visceral (the string-seared, Just Blaze-laced “Get Back” and the seductive, Jay Dee-navigated “Push,” which is as close to a conventional club heater as this camp has come yet). Haters may remain skeptical. But fuck your thoughts and your feelings, homie-you don’t know MED.