Sunday, December 1, 2013

Action Bronson Runs New York

New York has been the Mecca of hip hop since its foundation, producing some of the most iconic rappers to date. Kool G Rap, Run-D.M.C., The Notorious B.I.G., Nas, Jay Z, Dipset, all New York natives and all held the crown at one point in time. Well, New York has a new king and his name is Action Bronson.

Making his debut in 2011 and dropping his widely acclaimed mixtape Blue Chips with Party Supplies’ in 2012, the underground hip hop scene embraced this Queens bred emcee with open arms. Despite the lack of features on Blue Chips, his cultured lyricism and incomparable flow earned him the respect from fellow rappers in the industry and Bronson went on to be featured on Chance the Rapper, A$AP Rocky’s, Mac Miller’s and Smoke DZA’s projects.

My first glimpse of Action Bronson was in 2012 when he shut down the Brooklyn Bowl in Williamsburg and I still remember him being larger than life, literally and figuratively, jumping into the audience, dapping up his fans, playing an entire bowling game while simultaneously never missing a rhyme. From the beginning, Bronson represented the people. I became addicted to his authenticity, and seeing him on two other tours, I began to fully realize his greatness. Rap started as the soundtrack of the streets and Action Bronson exudes that true essence of hip hop.

Atlantic Records and Vice Records snatched him up and although he has yet to release a studio album, he has released a major label EP with Harry Fraud called Saab Stories. November 1, Bronson dropped Blue Chips 2, the second installment to the Blue Chips series. Party Supplies’ humor is a perfect mix with Bronson’s already comical flow and the tape features the voice recording from Allen Iverson’s epic “Practice Rant,” as well as samples from “Tequila” by The Champs and Tracy Chapman’s “Give Me A Reason To Be here” solidifying its spot as one of the greatest projects of 2013. Straight spitting, lengthy verses and lot’s of solo tracks, Blue Chips 2 incorporates the perfect balance of old school technique with contemporary content and flow.

Aside from producing high quality material for two years now, he has pretty much been on tour non-stop. Accompanied by A$AP Ferg, Mayhem Lauren, Joey Bada$$, Big K.R.I.T., Trash Talk and Danny Brown, his live performances are outstanding. Action Bronson brings his undeniable New York flavor wherever he goes and shuts down each venue he steps foot in.

Recently, there has been much dismay over a supposed decline in New York hip hop. With rappers either being more influential in fashion or simply relying on dope producers to keep them relevant, the throne in NY has been wide open and Action Bronson swooped in for the crown. Demanding respect and standing as one of the most lyrical rappers in the game right now, Bronson is undoubtedly here to stay. Looking like the body guard, influenced in flow by Ghostface Killah, spitting content representing both his Queens roots, Albanian heritage and of course love for food, Bronson is killing every track he touches and holding New York hip hop on his shoulders. So next time someone says NY hip hop is dead, point them in the direction of Action Bronson, cuz he runs that shit.

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