Even after all these years in the industry, it’s still so fresh and so fun to hear what The Alchemist is mixing in the lab today. In fact, he’s done so many great collaborations that any link-up with the veteran producer is almost guaranteed to produce heat. MIKE and Wiki are his two newest collaborators, and they’ve just dropped an excellent collection of bars via “One More.” Moreover, the three-track and 9-minute EP is part of a collaborative campaign with Patta and Tommy Hilfiger.
Firstly, the production is just as soulful and lush as you’d expect from Al. On the EP’s title track, you can hear the sampled guitars, chopped vocal samples, and gentle string hits with impeccable clarity. As Al’s refined his production down to deeper soundscapes and more minimal structures, the result is a cavernous but sultry sound. No drums necessary on this track; let MIKE and Wiki’s flows guide you through the beat. But he’s still able to throw it back to hard New York streets, as the menacing pianos and boom-bap beat on “Be Realistic” display. Additionally, the track also includes some tasteful string arrangements to add some drama.
Meanwhile, the track “Odd Ways” returns to some compelling soul and more down-trodden and atmospheric instrumentation. However, Al throws in some soft drums that lumber and stumble their way through the track. It’s a slow cut, much like the production on this year’s Roc Marciano collab The Elephant Man’s Bones. Despite all this production talk, thought, let’s not forget the two creative, skilled, and cold MCs on this project.
Interestingly, the three tracks are kind of evenly divided between MIKE and Wiki. Moreover, they both have verses on “One More,” but Wiki’s solo on “Be Realistic” and so is MIKE on “Odd Ways.” They show a lot of chemistry on that first track, with Wiki’s nasal voice and acrobatic flows contrasting wonderfully with MIKE’s deep husk and soulful delivery. However, both MCs spit engaging verses with evocative wordplay and references.
Wiki’s fresh off his mixtape with Subjxct 5, Cold Cuts. Meanwhile, MIKE has dropped singles like “What Do I Do?” for his next album, Beware of the Monkey. You can check out the Alchemist-produced EP on your preferred streaming service and its tracklist below. Also, peep the music video for the EP’s title track and watch the trio vibe amid New York settings.
- One More (MIKE, Wiki, & The Alchemist)
- Be Realistic (Wiki & The Alchemist)
- Odd Ways (MIKE & The Alchemist)