ALBUM REVIEW: Action Bronson’s Blue Chips 2

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“Blue Chips”.

Tyler Schmader

Queens-area-rapper Action Bronson has carved himself out an interesting niche in the underground rap scene. His affinity for food, obscure sports references, slapdash production, ridiculous imagery and non-sequiturs have set him apart from the crowd of old-school rap emulators that have emerged from New York in the past. Yet his his unique brand of mafioso rap has seldom changed over his career, which has left some of his projects sounding uninspired and similar to one another. “Blue Chips 2”- the sequel to the critically acclaimed “Blue Chips” mixtape- leaves his recipe mostly untouched.

Yet this is not a bad thing. Bronson sticks with his guns and proves with this album that he is to Mafioso rap what Pusha T is to coke rap. He can continue to wax poetic about hookers and passé sports cars, and it will sound as spry and fresh as it did when he started. What lets Bronson continue to tread the same ground over and over is his immense charisma, his ability to paint pictures with his lyrics, and the talented producers that create the albums with him.

The producer that acts as Action Bronson’s partner on this joint, Party Supplies, is a perfect match for him. Bronson’s braggadocious, nasally delivery is perfectly complemented by Supplies’ energetic, sample heavy, boom-bap beats. The samples used in this album are unorthodox to say the least, but well used nonetheless. Everything/one from Phil Collins, to an Applebee’s commercial can and will be used successfully.

Bronson’s taste in everything from cars, to women, is unusual to say the least. As are his references. Everyone from MLB veteran Placido Polanco, to WWE wrestler Rey Mysterio, are name dropped. Every time he references bygone celebrities or obscure athletes, you can’t help but be intrigued. And regardless of whether or not you understand them, the references definitely contribute to his oddball persona.

Take, for example the song “Contemporary Man”, in which a slew of 80’s hits are chopped and edited, and both Supplies and Bronson show their worth, with Supplies showing he can make about anything into a superb beat, and Bronson demonstrates his ability to ride just about any beat adeptly. The absurdity of this song is echoed in the rest of the album as well, with NBA games being rigged, many backflips being done, and lots of marble being imported throughout the album.

“Blue Chips 2” is above all, a fun album. Bronsons ridiculous persona is showcased beautifully, and is complimented well by the excellent production of Party Supplies. This duo work together well, and create a worthy successor to “Blue Chips”.