Tag Archives: Outdoorsmen

Album Review – Meyhem Lauren & Buckwild

meyhem lauren cover

Meyhem Lauren & Buckwild

“Silk Pyramids”

(Thrice Great Records)

The place an emcee calls home has always been an important factor in Hip-Hop. For example, over the years, if a new artist was able to claim the likes of the Bronx or Brooklyn as their stomping grounds, it immediately lent their upcoming project a sense of credibility due purely to the history of said NY boroughs. On the flip-side, freestyle favourite Mad Skillz titled his debut 1996 album “From Where???” thanks to the low expectations Hip-Hop heads had at the time of any artist coming out of his Richmond, Virginia locale.

But whilst hometown pride has been commonplace in the rap game since day one,  there are those emcees who rhyme well who just happen to come from a certain place, with their postal address not necessarily having a direct link to their artistry, and then there are those lyricists who literally embody the place they came up in, with their environment and their music being virtually inseparable. Think MC Eiht and Compton. Scarface and Houston’s Fifth Ward. Raekwon or Ghostface and the slums of Shaolin. And, of course, Biggie and Brooklyn.

At its best, the music of the above mentioned artists (and others) has gone beyond simply being about quality beats and rhymes, managing instead to capture the sights, sounds and stories of their respective surroundings, which in turn has informed their work with an organic, tangible quality that puts the listener directly into their world with no compromise or apology.

On his latest full-length project, the Buckwild-produced “Silk Pyramids”, NYC’s Meyhem Lauren does exactly that. Pulling us deep into the galaxy of Queens via his colourful wordplay, the Outdoorsmen member delivers a solid slice of Rotten Apple Hip-Hop that finds Laurenovich looking no further than outside of his front door for inspiration.

Stating on the opening Action Bronson-assisted “100 M.P.H.” that he’s “so Queens that you can feel me”, Lauren goes on to paint vivid images of his beloved borough on “Q.U. Cartilage”, weaving landmarks, names and personal memories together to create fast-moving cinematic rhymes that time-travel from Meyhem’s youth to the present day, with the rapper sounding grateful that he’s reached a point in life that some of his friends perhaps haven’t been lucky enough to see (“Blastin’ Billie Holiday out the Benz coup, Came a long way from the days when we were strange fruit…”).

The organ-driven “Salmon Croquettes” finds Lauren being joined by AG Da Coroner, with the Brooklyn lyricist delivering a gruff verse of epic OG proportions, sounding like the rhyming version of Ving Rhames’ character in John Singleton’s “Baby Boy” as he claims to be “the real meaning of a rap artist” whilst sending a warning to rap’s younger generation who “steal from the older gods”.

“Honey Champagne Sorbet” is built around a warm sonic soul glow, as Buckwild delivers the perfect loop to match Lauren’s verses of fly braggadocio,  with the Lo-Life representative sounding like he’s just won Mack Of The Year and is up on the podium delivering his acceptance speech (“My life was written ‘cos I wrote it, Then I got promoted, Pockets exploded, Now this whip I drive is candy-coated…”).

Elsewhere, the mellow “Aztec Blue” is a walk down memory lane, with Meyhem reminiscing alongside Hologram about simpler times involving spraying tags on buildings, hanging-out with the crew and rocking fresh kicks, whilst “Where The $ At” is an obnoxious, drum-heavy display of lyrical arrogance featuring a typically larger-than-life appearance from Thirstin Howl who can be heard flaunting a wallet “big enough to be a saddle” amongst other humourous claims.

The closing “Been Official”, arguably the album’s strongest track, features Lauren boasting of his “outfit architecture” over sublime production whilst pondering whether his “street s**t, poetically spoken” will lead him to be crowned the next king of New York.

Musically, Buckwild upholds his half of the duo’s creative deal throughout “Silk Pyramids”. Whilst it would have been easy for the veteran producer to have been heavy-handed with a signature 90s Diggin’ In The Crates sound, Buck has instead blessed Lauren with a selection of beats that compliment his style and help give the album its own sense of identity.

The only weak link here is the underwhelming “I Want It All” which, unfortunately, suffers due to Buckwild’s production on this particular cut lacking the character heard throughout the rest of his work on the album.

Overall, “Silk Pyramids” is a win for the Queens native. At a time when the uneducated are still claiming that New York rap has lost its distinctiveness, Meyhem Lauren has been carrying on tradition, keeping his Wallabees clean, his Polo collection up-to-par and his rhyme skills sharp, crafting quality music to put listeners in an NY state of mind, wherever it is they might reside around the globe.

Ryan Proctor

Follow Meyhem Lauren on Twitter – @MeyhemLauren

Meyhem Lauren & Buckwild – “Been Official” (Thrice Great Records / 2014)


New Joint – Meyhem Lauren & Buckwild

meyhem lauren cover

Meyhem Lauren & Buckwild – “Silk Shirts And Yellow Gold” (@MeyhemLauren / 2014)

The Queens, NY wordsmith spits that rugged fly ish on this official leak from his forthcoming Thrice Great Records project “Silk Pyramids” produced entirely by Diggin’ In The Crates legend Buckwild.

Crushed Grapes EP Download – AG Da Coroner / ATG

ag cover

Outdoorsmen affiliate AG Da Coroner preps heads for his official debut album on Man Bites Dog Records with this rugged EP featuring Meyhem Lauren, Lord Nez, Spit Gemz and more – lace your Timberlands up and download here.

New Joint – Action Bronson

Action Bronson – “Strictly 4 My Jeeps” (ActionBronson.Com / 2013)

The NY emcee gets his shrimp money up in these bugged-out visuals for his 90s-influenced Harry Fraud-produced track.

New Joint – Action Bronson / Bunty Beats

Action Bronson – “Get Off My P.P. – Bunty Beats Remix” (BuntyBeats.Com / 2013)

Glasgow producer Bunty Beats puts his own stamp on a Bronson favourite – download here.

New Joint – Meyhem Lauren

Meyhem Lauren – “Mandated Participants” (@MeyhemLauren / 2012)

Rowdy beats and rhymes from the Queens, NY emcee’s recent project “Mandatory Brunch Meetings”.

Mandatory Brunch Meetings Album Download – Meyhem Lauren

meyhem lauren cover

The NY emcee delivers a new collection of free gritty Rotten Apple rap featuring input from Harry Fraud, Tommy Mas, Maffew Ragazino and more – download some quality music to do business to here.

New Joint – Shaz Illyork / AG Da Coroner

Shaz Illyork ft. AG Da Coroner – “Alicia Keys” (@Shaz_Illyork / 2012)

The NY emcee joins forces with his Outdoorsmen comrade AG for this JM Productions-laced track from his upcoming debut “Deadstock Revival”.

New Joint – Meyhem Lauren

Meyhem Lauren – “Fingerless Driving Gloves” (@MeyhemLauren / 2012)

The Queens, NY emcee drops some visuals for one of the illest cuts from his recent Tommy Mas / Harry Fraud-produced project “Respect The Fly S**t”.

Respect The Fly S**t Mixtape Download – Meyhem Lauren

Recorded during a mammoth twenty-four hour recording session in Meyhem Lauren’s hotel suite during this year’s SXSW event in Texas, this free twelve-track Tommy Mas / Harry Fraud-produced mixtape is a perfect example of the magic that can be captured when you pack a group of talented emcees into one room with a stash of quality beats, a few bags of sticky-icky and some alcohol – download here.

New Joint – Starvin B / Spit Gemz

Starvin B ft. Spit Gemz – “Rhyme Burial” (StarvinB.BandCamp.Com / 2012)

Taken from the NY emcee’s recent project “The Food Chain”.

New Joint – Meyhem Lauren / Action Bronson / Heems

Meyhem Lauren ft. Action Bronson & Heems – “Special Effects” (@MeyhemLauren / 2012)

Harry Fraud-produced track from Lauren’s forthcoming project “Respect The Fly S**t”.

New Joint – Shaz Illyork

Shaz Illyork – “I Ain’t The One” (@Shaz_Illyork / 2012)

Taken from the Queens, NY emcee’s new project “Before It All Happened”.

Live Review – Action Bronson

Venue: Barfly Camden, London Date: 25 March 2012

NY emcee Action Bronson’s rise through the rap underground has been as steady and organic as it has been well-deserved and, in hindsight, perhaps expected. Although the rapper arrived amidst Ghostface comparisons, it quickly became clear that Bronson was very much his own man, an individual who appeared to be a fully-formed artist in his own right bursting with personality. His 2011 project “Dr. Lecter” (produced by Manhattan’s Tommy Mas) has quickly become a cult classic and is largely the album responsible for ensuring this particular stop on Action’s European tour sold out almost immediately.

Making his way to the stage from the rear of the small venue like a champion wrestler, the electricity in the air generated from the amped crowd proved that the rapper may be small in stature, but he’s definitely big in terms of presence. With the audience literally approaching levels of hysteria, Bronson lumbered onstage to join Tommy Mas, arms aloft, smiling from ear to ear like someone who is fully aware that their time has arrived.

Proving himself to be a true man of  the people, instead of ignoring or rejecting the drunken audience member who’d found his way onstage prior to his arrival, the Outdoorsmen member simply allowed the boisterous fan to hug him and exchange pounds, laughing as he led the crowd in chants of “Bronson! Bronson!”, before playfully asking “Who the f**k are you?!”

Seconds later the Queens representative launched into the brilliant “Shiraz”, shouting “I’m comin’ in…” before making his way into the crowd and being immediately drowned in a sea of hands, all high-fiving, back-patting and head-rubbing. With Bronson at the back of the venue by the track’s end, the announcer’s voice on the intro of the neck-snapping “Barry Horowitz” led to a further explosion of enthusiasm from the audience, with Bronson virtually being mobbed by fans as he rapped his way back towards the stage, taking pictures, hugging girls and wiping sweat from his face, but remaining on-beat and clear with his delivery at all times.

With members of the audience defying venue regulations and lighting up that sticky-icky, Bronson was offered a fair share of herbal treats to partake in. “Is that tobacco in there?” he asked repeatedly, before finding someone who was offering something a little purer that suited his tastes. Having already admitted to being both tired and stoned, the further smoke inhalation did nothing to hinder the rapper’s ability to perform, as he continued to hit every word in every line of his verses. Both the anthemic “Brunch” and Statik Selektah-produced “Respect The Mustache” were delivered with gusto.

Reaching the end of his set but aware the crowd were still hungry for more, Bronson consulted Mas’s onstage laptop before deciding to drop “Hookers At The Point” from his latest “Blue Chips” project, ad-libbing the track’s hilarious pimp talk before stating it was time to “get the f**k out, go to the hotel and sleep.”

With the rowdy, unpredictable crowd, tightly-packed venue and high energy levels, the 45-minute set was reminiscent of some of the memorable shows of the 90s in places such as London’s Subterranea. Action Bronson delivered on all fronts, both in terms of his performance and his willingness to interact with fans, giving everyone a handful of real rap memories to take home with them.

I, for one, left the gig with scuffed Timberlands, a burnt arm from someone falling into me with a lit joint, and a beer-stained t-shirt, but I wasn’t even mad.

Bronson! Bronson! Bronson!

Ryan Proctor

BringBackRapTV footage of Action Bronson at Barfly Camden.

New Joint – Meyhem Lauren / Fi-Lo

Meyhem Lauren ft. Fi-Lo – “Barbarian Blast Off” (MeyhemLauren.Com / 2011)

Produced by B Divine and taken from the NY emcee’s “Clarified Butter” mixtape”.

Home Sweet Home – Action Bronson

TheFader.Com takes a cooking lesson from Action Bronson.

New Joint – J-Love / Chanel Nicole

J-Love ft. Chanel Nicole – “Top Of The World” (J-LoveOnline.Com / 2011)

Taken from the producer-on-the-mic’s recent project “Egotistical Maniac”.

New Joint – Meyhem Lauren / Lewis Parker

Meyhem Lauren – “Got The Fever – Lewis Parker Remix” (The World Of Dusty Vinyl / 2011)

UK producer and king of the SP-1200 Lewis Parker puts his own twist on the Queens emcee’s previously-released graffiti anthem.

Breaking Down Bars – Action Bronson

Action Bronson goes behind the rhymes for DunKno.Ca during a recent trip to Canada.

New Joint – J-Love

J-Love – “Vocal Scalpel” / “Another Victory” (J-LoveOnline.Com / 2011)

The producer-on-the-mic drops some quickfire bars on the Ayatollah-produced “Vocal Scalpel” before putting his own twist on Big Daddy Kane’s late-80s classic “Another Victory”.