Alfredo provides a perfect blend of luxury, grit and lyricism that results in a masterful rap project from two artist at the top of their game.
"the revolution will be televised, my execution might be televised"
Freddie Gibbs has been on an amazing run of projects with You Only Live 2wice, Fetti (with Alchemist & Curren$y) and Bandana (with Madlib) all being released over the last three years and this has led to very high expectations of the Indiana rapper. For most artists following up an album of Bandana's quality would be a daunting task and they may choose to take a few years to develop their next project, but Freddie has used this momentum to produce what is arguably his best project yet.
Alchemist is, without question, a legend in the Hip Hop scene, but what sets him apart from many of his peers in rap production his his ability to evolve and improve even as a veteran. 2020 has already seen The Alchemist produce the outstanding, collaborative project The Price Of Tea in China with rapper Boldy James and with the release of Alfredo, it is clear to see that he is still at the top of his game.
Since both Alchemist and Freddie have already collaborated on EP, Fetti, it was already clear they had a strong chemistry but this project sees both artists raise their levels. The combination of Freddie's intricate flows, creative drug references and witty wordplay alongside Alchemist's talent to create cinematic instrumentals make for one of the best projects so far this year.
Lead single and intro, "1985", sets the tone beautifully with Freddie using his fast, choppy flow over a smooth guitar sampling instrumental that would fit perfectly any old mafia/gangster film. However, the following track, "God is Perfect" takes a darker tone and is great display of Alchemist's ability to make a mean, gritty beat; which suited Freddie's lyrical topic matter perfectly.
"Scottie Beam" is a huge highlight off the album with potent lyrics which feature an interesting conversation between Freddie and the police as well as a stellar verse from Rick Ross. This track features a smooth, pretty instrumental which stands in complete contrast to the sinister "Frank Lucas" featuring Griselda's Benny who drops one of the best feature verses on the project.
The most surprising feature on the project comes from Tyler, The Creator on "Something to Rap About" and sees both Tyler and Freddie dropping lengthy verses. This track would of fit perfectly on Yacht Rock 2 and is summarised by Tyler when he states: "this sound like the boat I haven't bought yet/this sound like the moment I jump off it".
"Baby $hit" picks up the pace a bit and sees Gibbs divulge some interesting information on Doja Cat whereas "Babies & Fools" uses the sample masterfully and features a very personal verse from Conway The Machine of Griselda.
However, "Skinny Suge" stands out as the best of the pack with smooth instrumental that provides a perfect canvas for Freddie to paint a vivid picture of drug dealing and balancing the lifestyle with a rap career. Gibbs displays intense pain and passion on this track and shows his lyrical depth.
Alfredo is easily one of the projects of the year so far, and Freddie Gibbs has solidified himself as one of the top 5 lyricists currently active. This project is a great example of why Alchemist should be appreciated as one of the best producers in the scene and we can only hope this isn't the last project between the two.
Album Rating: 9.5/10