Action Bronson is a hip hop artist that needs little introduction these days – since bursting into the major label scene in 2012, he has pumped out hits amidst countless shows from Coachella Valley to South Africa alongside established hip hop heavy hitters like J. Cole, Kendrick Lamar, and Eminem.
Although long preceding the come up of Bronson, The Alchemist is perhaps an artist that you have heard but have not heard of. Producing hip hop records since the 90s, Al has served as a musical jack of all trades: producing records for esteemed artists like Nas, residing as DJ for global superstar Eminem, and even composing an original score for celebrated video game franchise Grand Theft Auto.
The two have been longtime collaborators since Bronson was brought into the management circle of Goliath Artists, the same organization to unite Al and Eminem years prior. Between a 2012 mixtape and a litany of singles since then, Bronson and The Alchemist have developed a strong musical rapport on full display on their new collab record Lamb Over Rice.
Blending old musical concepts with constantly new and variable flows, Lamb Over Rice functions as a near- period piece: the wistful harmonica and trumpet fanfare on lead track “Dmitri,” the saloon piano of “Descendant of the Stars,” and the Dixieland-inspired bass riff on “Just the Way It Is” cultivate an overall nostalgic sound. The ambient dialogue in between tracks furthers this notion, hearkening back to the days of full-band live studio recordings.
The new record, however, is not bereft of innovation and updated musical ideals. The heavy dosage of sampling on “Tear Away Shorts,” emphatically repetitive hook on “Just the Way It Is,” and polyrhythmic backbeat of “Arnold & Danny” establish a contrasting musical ideal throughout the record that solidifies Lamb Over Rice as a culmination of old concepts for a record that is overflowing with progressive character and is indubitably unique.
What is your favorite track off of Bronson’s new release? Let us know in the comments!