Action Bronson: ‘Terry’ Single Review

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Having released the album cover for his major-label debut Mr. Wonderful, rapper Action Bronson has dropped another single. The track is entitled “Terry”, and produced by his frequent collaborator The Alchemist. The two had previously worked together on the mixtape Rare Chandeliers, and this track is both reminiscent of that past project, as well as surprising in its own way.

“Terry” finds the profligate rapper in familiar form, casually talking about sex acts, drugs, and food: “Twisted off the jenkem/ I’m watching Iron Chef/ The secret ingredient was Lion’s Neck”. The presentation is certainly customary for the Bronson & Alchemist milieu, with Alchemist providing a soothing R&B-esque beat that still manages to compliment Bronson’s brash lyrics. Then again though, Bronson hardly conveys any anger on “Terry”, and instead seems more adamant towards reflecting on the things he likes in life. “Smoke good, f***, eat, drink / Drive nice car, wear all green mink” goes the song’s chorus.

That said, Bronson also expresses a bit of frustration concerning his current monetary status. “Imma strike it rich any day now / Uh, you know I gotta get a plate now”, raps Bronson, and it’s certainly a concern his fans will understand. For the last years the rapper has become a recognizable figure in hip-hop music due to his steady release of mixtapes and his culinary web-series F***, That’s Delicious, and his brand has become simply unmistakable. For some unfathomable reason though, he hasn’t quite left his status as an “underground” artist, which Bronson alludes when he says he could only “cop about half a plane.” Alternatively though, Bronson also makes it clear that he is no sell-out artist, when he chants “There’s no hit records on a demo,” making clear that Bronson isn’t exactly expecting big dividends from his previous ventures.

The song is so uniformly Bronson for the majority of its duration that some listeners may not acknowledge that the track makes a very unexpected transgression in the last minute.  Here, Alchemist’s beat transitions into something far more elliptic. It’s a soundscape that almost sounds like something off of Flying Lotus’ new record, and Bronson can be heard singing (not rapping) the words “I’ve been waiting for” over and over again. Perhaps this is a hint that Mr. Wonderful might have a reoccurring motif to it, and may even feature some unexpected leaps forward for Bronson as an artist. It’s enticing to think that the rapper might show a more surreal side to him, beyond all his fictionalized accounts of thug life and infidelity.

Overall “Terry” is another solid release from Action Bronson that should appease his fans, although not necessarily win over his naysayers. The song is also a bit different in its sound than the other released singles, “Actin Crazy” and “Easy Rider,” likely because The Alchemist has been such a singular talent in hip-hop for over a decade now.

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