Published Apr 19, 2018Prolific is one thing, varied is something completely different. Yet in both aspects, the Alchemist's cup runs over, having collected, over 25 years, an incredible number of production credits for rappers of all stripes. Mobb Deep, Cypress Hill, Prodigy, Nas, Raekwon, Royce 5'9", Joey Bada$$, Schoolboy Q, Danny Brown, Quelle Chris and Kendrick Lamar among many, many others have spat over what the Alchemist concocted. The L.A. producer's beats have graced videogames and movie soundtracks along the way as well.
He who keeps it ever old-school presents, on his latest EP, another buffet of gutter delights, a gritty mishmash of dope percussion, jazz horns, soulful guitar and eclectic movie dialogue. It's all made even meatier by solid lyricists of the underground.
Lunch Meat opens with a short cut, "Dean Martin Steaks," that is still quite filling; Long Island rapper Roc Marciano is on a low-key rampage as he strings up cattle, plucks feathers and eviscerates cleanly over a murky beat. There's no treachery in "Judas," just two rapping brothers from Buffalo, NY — Westside Gunn and Conway — flexing like wrestlers. Their seedy track launches with the lecherous Bogs Diamond from The Shawshank Redemption — "I said FUCK OFF!" — and ends with Action Bronson playing mixologist, right before his crooning cautionary tale "The Hopeless Romantic."
The closer, before each beat breathes sans MC on Side B, connects the strengths of Styles P and Benny the Butcher, and both rappers paint macabre pictures of hustling. One, a veteran rapper and founder of D-Block Records, and the other, a relatively fresh voice coming out of Buffalo, are on the same wavelength, and "Massacre" might (hopefully) be the first of many bloody good collabs. (ALC)