Ever since Macklemore's The Heist won the Grammy for Best Rap Album over Kendrick Lamar's Good Kid m.A.A.d city back in 2014, the buzz surrounding the once-beloved Seattle rapper has faded.
Whether that's because Good Kid m.A.A.d city is one of the best rap albums of the last 20 years and almost certainly better than The Heist, or because of Macklemore's corny response to beating Kendrick, the facts are that he has never again reached the peaks he reached between 2012 and 2014. That is probably by design — the "Can't Hold Us" rapper has been very public about the fact that he is a family man and wants to keep his family life private — but it's been quite some time since the Macklemore name carried a ton of weight.
Ethan Miller/Getty Images
In following up 2017's Gemini, however, the Seattle rapper is dipping back into The Heist bag and working with longtime collaborate and producer Ryan Lewis for the first time in half-a-decade.
Sitting down with Zane Lowe, Macklemore talked about his upcoming album and what it's been like to be back in the lab with Lewis.
"I'm well into an album that, and I haven't said this out loud yet, but hopefully we'll have it in the springtime," Macklemore told Lowe. "And, you know Ryan, that's my brother. And he's just so talented. So I heard this in the very infancy demo stage and I was like, 'That's a record. You should send me that.' And when we got in the studio, a little bit nervous, it's been a long time. A lot of things there in between. And we just connected, man. It was just that back right there, like we always have been. I don't think that I've spent more time with anyone else than I have with Ryan. maybe rivaling my best friend from five years old and my wife. Ryan and I were together every day for a decade all day long, working, creating, touring, everything in between. So, yeah, that's going to translate."
Ethan Miller/Getty Images
The record Macklemore mentions is "Next Year," a single he and Lewis released last Friday that features a sound reminiscent of moments on The Heist and promises that next year will be better than the one we are in now.
It's unlikely that Macklemore ever ascends to the heights he did in the early-2010s, but throughout the back half of last decade, it was clear there was something missing in his music. Macklemore and Ryan Lewis had their moment and their sound and, despite taking a hiatus from working with each other, it will be interesting to see if they can capture any of the magic that fueled their rise to fame back in the day.
Check out Macklemore & Ryan Lewis "Next Year" below and let us know what you think in the comments.