Come 2015, Action Bronson was already a household name in Hip-Hop. The Rap-Child vocally of Wu-Tang legend Ghostface Killah, the comical approach of a ‘Delirious’ Eddie Murphy and the food comparisons that only could match Atlanta MC 2 Chainz. His debut album title, simply and rightfully matching his abrasive flow and luxurious comparisons of women to weed, food to violence and just spitting genuine golden bars. ‘Mr. Wonderful’ is a great title for the first major album by the Queens MC and follow-up to his collaborative EP with Harry Fraud.
From the opening Mark Ronson produced “Brand New Car”, filled with skipping keys, 90s Rock drumming and wicked bars from Bronson, bragging of his fashion sense, having “mad kids overseas” and remembering a time of smoking joints on benches, the song is more of a celebratory-ode to the success Bronson has achieved not just through Rap but his other endeavours as well. The following track, “The Rising” featuring none other than Big Body Bes. One of the best spoken-word ad-libbers to ever bless a track. However, “Terry”, produced by the always dreamy The Alchemist. Over guitar loops, smooth synths and keys that are too chill too describe.
While the album, for the majority, is in typical Action style, it doesn’t reel me in as much as his previous efforts like his ‘Blue Chips’ series. Yes, he does incorporate more influences and experiments with how he delivers his verses like on “Only in America” and “A Light in the Attic”.
However, there are tracks on here that would entertain any Action fan or critic. “Falconry” featuring Meyhem Lauren and Bes is a high-pitched horn led Boom-Bap record. Bronsons flow jumps over the loop of the beat and brags about his hash smoking and listening to “German guitar riffs” while growing up. However, Lauren’s verse is one of the only features on the album that stands out more than Action. His rough cool-paced and alike to Action, luxurious bars paint, images of a lavish lifestyle that only they can make visuals for through lyrics. Chance the Rapper’s verse on the second Ronson-produced “Baby Blue” filled with a beautiful piano melody and Jazz-influence. It also contains another verse on the album that compared to Bronson, is difficult. While Bronson kills it in his own way, Chance’s schizophrenic flow and just bluntly vengeful bars triumph over AB. The horns at the end of this track just make it that much better and make your scrunch your face up with pleasure.
Compared to Bronson’s previous releases to his debut, it’s not bad..yet, it’s not to the high quality and refute to skip tracks on ‘Blue Chips 2’. Action still kills this album and is most definitely one of the better Rappers around today; however, his debut, in my eyes, didn’t live up to the hype, in a sonic sense, that could capture the music previously released by him.