Bone Crew, the trap-metal collaboration between Attila frontman Chris Fronzak (far more often referred to as simply Fronz) and Detroit rap artist Da Boi J, have introduced their hybrid of genres to the world with their debut self-titled EP.
One in an ever-growing number of side-projects and businesses, and also released on his own record label, it’s fair to say Fronz excels in terms of both his work ethic and his ability to utilise the word “bitch” in a dizzying range of different musical genres and lyrical situations.
The result is a collection of songs that are doubtlessly entertaining, but of dubious quality and lasting appeal, especially to listeners who may be more predisposed to the metalcore half of this equation.
With opening track, ‘Welcome To The Bone Crew’, our dynamic duo reveal themselves to be men of simple pleasures, namely fat blunts and getting wrecked. The humourous lyrical crassness that has become Fronz‘s calling card is front and center here (and pretty much everywhere else for that matter), but there is some depth to the way that the two vocalists play off of one another. The contrast in their styles is surprisingly effective, especially in the whiplash-inducing shifts between the harsh growls and the smooth fast-flowing raps. The chorus in particular is one of several annoyingly infectious hooks peppered over this releases’s 15-minute duration.
Lead single ‘Back It Up’ and third track ‘WDGAF’ (which also features Lil Toenail) continue in much the same vein, with the boys musing about both fat stacks and fat asses in addition to the aforementioned fat blunts. It’s after this point, however, that the record falls off somewhat, with closing two songs ‘Real Ones Only’ and ‘Tunnel Vision’ both feeling distinctly less inspired and more generic in terms of beat.
Genre mash-ups such as this are at their best when they showcase the extremes of each component and combine them in novel ways. Whilst there are moments in which this is achieved, far too often it falls into the indistinct middle ground and loses all impact. To their credit, both members of Bone Crew have a charismatic style of delivery and a real intent to create something different, but after only five songs the premise seems to run out of steam.
Worth a listen for the novelty and for the sheer entertainment value of its lyrics, Bone Crew‘s EP is unlikely to win significant critical acclaim or amass many awards, but it’s safe to say that its members almost certainly couldn’t care less. After all, in their own words, “Haters wanna talk shit. / All we do is pop shit.”