Alchemist’s name commands respect. One of the most consistent producers of this generation, the legendary beatmaker has been involved in some of the best hip-hop music over the last few years, and he doesn’t seem to want to slow down either. He has teamed up with veteran New Orleans emcee Curren$y on their third collaborative album (after 2011’s Covert Coup and 2018’s Fetti) titled Continuance. And let me tell you this – it does not disappoint one bit. Alchemist’s production is as vivid and picturesque as anything he’s released so far, with soulful, dusty beats that contain a charm that is so unique to his sound. Curren$y on the other hand flows effortlessly over these beats, with his usual laid back style that complements the vibrant sound of the production.
The light opener “Half Moon Mornings” is an exceptional way to open the album, with a vibrant and exceptionally produced beat, with Curren$y floating on that beat effortlessly. “Reese’s Cup” features some incredible piano keys and a short but concise verse from Curren$y, who really knows how to flow and sound nice over Alchemist production. Their chemistry really is something to admire, and that to be honest has to do with Alchemist’s versatility as a producer and his ability to mold sounds that fit each artist effortlessly. With Curren$y, it’s that summery, smooth vibe in the beats that he’s so good with, and Al gives him that throughout the entire project. While I’ve never been a massive fan of Curren$y’s music over the years, him working with only the best producers helps keep me more engaged. “No Yeast” features an exceptional verse from Boldy James, who delivers a vivid and hard-hitting verse, and Curren$y’s luxury-rap verse sounds incredible over this colourful beat. The album features some grittier and darker production, with tracks like “Corvette Rally Stripes” featuring the legend Havoc and a surprisingly excellent verse from Wiz Khalifa. It’s a dominant, almost overpowering beat that allows all three emcees to flow with more oomph, especially Havoc, who delivers some exceptional bars – “The streets birthed us, the pain nursed us / The money cursed us, don’t got respect and it’s worthless / Living my life’s purpose on purpose”. “Whale Watching” featuring Styles P contains probably my favourite beat, with this driving, pummeling groove that is just infectious. Living his best life, Curren$y raps effortlessly over this incredible beat. “Sound like your shit a motherfucking façade / Sound like you ain’t really comfortable with who you are” is a reference to folks who fake their lifestyles to try and feel included within the culture, but it’s the fact that he sounds so comfortable and in his zone on this track that makes this such a good line. Other standout moments on the album are “Signature Move” and “Louis Baggage” featuring Babyface Ray, but that run from the former track to the closer “Kool & The Gang” is truly exceptional. The summery, feel-good and jazzy vibe of “Endurance Runners” featuring Larry June is incredible, as Curren$y reflects on his style over the years, referencing everything from his Maserati to reflections on his own life, and the pride he feels from persevering through all what he’s been through.
The way he’s able to boast over some of the best production I’ll likely hear all year is a true joy, and a testament to his talents as an emcee and artist. Alchemist on the other hand is just a genius, and the beats on Continuance are incredible. Their chemistry is undeniable throughout, and the album is exemplary of their talents and musicianship. Go listen and support that shit!