Action Bronson x Party Supplies
Bronson is back with "Blue Chips," yet another high-quality mixtape to add to an already impressive body of work.
For someone who has only really been well known for the last year or so, Action Bronson has put in quite a bit of work. With multiple studio albums already under his belt and a handful of mixtapes in his back pocket, he could be forgiven for needing a break or running out of steam. Nevertheless, Bronson is back with Blue Chips, yet another high-quality mixtape to add to an already impressive body of work.
Following the single-production pattern set by Bronson’s other projects like Well Done, Blue Chips was produced entirely by Party Supplies, helping the mixtape feel like something legitimate instead of a bunch of leftovers. The tracks themselves are perfectly suited for Bronson’s gritty, classic New York sound, making even a simple drum-less violin loop sound hard. Party Supplies takes the job seriously, building beats with unexpected changes (“Double Breasted”) and atypical concepts (“Thug Love Story”) that might normally be saved for a retail LP.
Bronson himself treats the project with care as well, spinning extended metaphors out of his usual favorite subjects—food, wrestling, women—in his typical energetic-but-effortless style. Many of the individual songs are shorter freestyles with one or two long verses (“Intercontinental Champion,” “5 Minute Beats 1 Take Raps”) but the in-and-out approach helps keep everything moving along smoothly. He goes long-form when he feels it’s necessary (“9-24-11”) but ultimately leaves you wanting more. Bronson’s style doesn’t vary heavily from verse to verse, but the rhymes are layered with enough complexity to make up the difference (“Tapas”).
There’s a case to be made that the frequent comparisons to Ghostface are a little unfair, but it’s still true that Action Bronson fills the “W” shaped hole in the rap game better than most actual Wu-Tang affiliates have been for the last several years. Either way, Bronson has yet to wear out his welcome even after a flood of releases, so while it’s still possible that he’ll slow down in the future, he hasn’t done it on Blue Chips.
DX Consensus: “Free Album” (the highest possible praise for a mixtape).