Action Bronson – Mr. Wonderful
Flushing, Queens native Action Bronson has had a steady rise built upon some really solid mixtapes – the Blue Chips series, SaaaB Stories, et al. – and so the hype for his debut was rather understandable. I hate being let down like this. I really wanted to like Mr. Wonderful, because I like Bronson and his wise-guy Ghostface-esque flow. There just isn’t enough of anything to like here, though. The beats are anemic, his flow is mostly missing in action, and the production is just off. The sudden stop on the opening track, “Brand New Car”, is meant to be endearing but just comes off as annoying. “Thug Love Story 2017: The Musical” is a fun enough skit but it goes on for far too long. The Party Supplies-produced tracks fall flat – “Only In America” has the makings of an epic track, but the sample is done in such an awful way that it ruins what could have been. The only really standout tracks here are the ones that were released pre-leak: “Baby Blue”, with a great verse from Chance The Rapper, and “Easy Rider”, which originally built my expectations for the album. “Easy Rider” is great and has earned a permanent place on several playlists, but the rest of the album fades into the background by comparison.