In a year that has seen a plethora of major releases already, the bar has been raised on what it takes to stand out as artists have begun to focus more on whole albums then single tracks. A$AP Rocky’s sophomore effort At.Long.Last.A$AP. is an achievement that does just that.
As it begins with a sample from the Coen Brothers O Brother, Where Art Thou before dropping into a deep instrumental framed by guitar bells and a driving bass, the listener is quickly aware they are in unchartered territory. “Church bells and choir sounds tell ‘em, quiet down / Bow your head, the most high’s around” is the first time we hear Rocky and the introduction to 66 minutes and 15 seconds of his greatest art to date.
The album’s range is sometimes vast both sonically and thematically. It is a puzzle that fits due to soul-searching work by Rocky, Danger Mouse, and the newest name on the tongues of Hip Hop heads across the country, Joe Fox. Fox’s story is that of biopic foder. He literally bumped into Rocky on the streets of London while trying to get people to listen to his mixtape and found himself in the studio with the rapper later that night.
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