King of the Dot’s World Domination 4 has been done for just over a week, and the debate over the battles has already started turning into hype for Battle of the Bay 6. Now that we’ve got some distance from the event, we wanted to give some final observations before the footage starts to drop.
We also spoke to Organik, Lush One, Drect and Poison Pen for their thoughts on the event. Their interviews are linked at the bottom. Scroll to the bottom for a complete rundown of T.O. Battle Blog’s exclusive WD4 content.
Theme of the weekend
Shots were fired at Ultimate Rap League, Smack and the league’s battlers. It started on Friday, when Charron called out URL battlers for not doing judged matches and for the league’s marquee event Summer Madness 3 being a flop. On Saturday, it was compounded by disses from Real Deal and Charlie Clips in consecutive battles. Real Deal basically used his entire third round to attack URL rappers who are afraid to battle him (e.g. “Chilla Jones is the biggest mark to come out of Boston since Wahlberg.”). Then Clips used his final round to address Smack’s recent vlog, which he took as “a spit” in his face for suggesting he’s taking money in return for mediocre performances. He also criticized the hypocrisy of putting K-Shine on the SM3 bill when he choked in his Big T battle. It’s possible that all three MCs were hamming it up for a pro-KOTD crowd, but with all the criticism being leveled at the SM3 card, it’s clear that URL is facing scrutiny like never before.
Battles of the weekend
CHARRON VS DNA
Yes, the absurdity of Charron vs Shotgun Suge would have made for high comedy. But pitting Charron against another MC with top-tier rebuttal and freestyle abilities was a great fallback option. (Charron told us the battle was confirmed with eight days’ notice, which makes the final result even more impressive.) Regardless of your opinion of DNA, he’s a consummate professional and always gets the crowd hyped. (Seriously, find us a battle where DNA has mailed it in. There’s a reason why he keeps getting booked for overseas battles.)
The end result was two MCs at the height of their abilities, both skilled enough to rebuttal each others’ bars and snatch momentum. Too often, battlers are simply reciting material that’s been written for weeks. DNA and Charron understand the old-school nature of battling – and have the skills to do it – which is why they put on a classic.
REAL DEAL VS RONE
Real Deal and Rone bring all the ingredients for a classic. They’re both well-prepared veterans who bring creative angles for their opponents and know how to perform in all types of venues, at home and abroad. What made this particular battle great was that each MC seemed to get stronger with every round. (On a side note, the crowd was a touch inattentive towards the beginning, but both battlers won them over by the end.)
Rone was more direct in his approach, explaining why Real Deal is a shitty father and has a stagnant career. As we’ve written before, Real Deal closed with a blistering final round that called out numerous URL battlers. You could argue it was a 2-1 victory for either battler, depending on your personal tastes. The fact that it was a debatable battle only adds to the appeal.
These days, it feels like every Charron battle is a breakout performance for him. Yes, he slayed HFK and Unanymous, but with all due respect to those guys, they don’t have the clout of DNA, whose battle against Dizaster has more YouTube views than either guy has total. Charron not only held his own versus DNA, but arguably beat him, and his performance was likely the best of Friday night. In the past year, Charron has proven that he’s able to meet whatever challenge is thrown his way, even as they get progressively tougher. His freestyle/rebuttal game makes him a serious threat for the title chain and his writing has become more direct and structured. Just a year ago, Charron was widely despised on message boards by those who felt he was awkward and cheesy. Now, he’s made converts of his biggest detractors and he deserves a title shot.
Saturday night marked the return of Hollohan, who hadn’t battled since January 2012 against Cortez. For that reason, many felt Hollohan would come with 19 months’ worth of golden material and pent-up aggression, all aimed directly at Charlie Clips. Instead, Harlem’s finest put on a master class of battling and quickly defused any chance of defeat. It was clear from the get-go that Clips had the crowd in the palm of his hand. By no means did he take this battle lightly, as some URL battlers have done in KOTD. His flow was effortless, his material was outstanding and he took the risk of dissing his home league. Between that and the Canadian references, he was playing to the crowd – which some people will see as a cheap way to get reaction – but he managed to do so without pandering too much. (Arsonal’s Canadian flag tanktop, on the other hand…) Clips is often criticized for not bringing three solid rounds to his battles, but this time, his third round was arguably his best, capped with a Bonnie Godiva cameo that garnered a huge reaction. As we’ve said before, Clips deserves another KOTD invite.
Going into the event, we thought Tantrum vs Protege had potential to be a sleeper pick for battle of the night (in the vein of Osa/Sonny Bamboo a year ago). Instead, the crowd was chatty as hell and it was nearly impossible to hear either MC spit their material. Part of the problem was that both MCs were light on punchlines and used long-winded set-ups. Regardless, the crowd didn’t give them a real shot from the start. On paper, this is a dope battle, and we’re not averse to seeing it done properly in front of a more receptive crowd.
At a big KOTD event, performing in the first battle of the evening is a tough position. Most of the crowd didn’t pay to see you, and a vocal minority is drinking in the back. That’s what made Uno Lavoz’s performance all the more impressive. Sure, Purpose was solid, but Lavoz won the crowd over at a time when it’s most difficult to do so. That in itself deserves massive credit. Lavoz was better prepared than we’ve seen him in ages, and he only had a couple minor stumbles. And kudos to him for understanding what many MCs don’t about performing in big venues: the crowd likes jokes. The judges gave Purpose a 3-2 victory, but from the crowd’s vantage point, it was clear that Lavoz had won.
We heard some debate between The Saurus, who judged it and penalized Lavoz for a choke, and Lavoz, who says he was just checking to make sure his boy JR Slander was ready to hand him the bodybag at the right moment. We’re definitely curious to see how the footage is received.
DAYLYT VS PESCI
We’re still adamant that Pesci won that battle, but in the days that followed it was clear that Daylyt won the war. The footage of Pesci getting repeatedly embarrassed was featured on Worldstar and even spawned a fan-made animation. We have yet to see him address the situation publicly.
THE NEW CANADIAN TOP TIER
Going into WD4, KOTD was suffering from a drought of top-tier Canadian battlers. Guys like Bender, Kid Twist, Knamelis, Osa, Loe Pesci, Tricky P, Jack Shitt and Hollohan hadn’t stepped into a KOTD ring in ages and it didn’t look like many of them were planning to any time soon. This event solidified 100 Bulletz, Charron, Arcane and Tycoon Tax as legitimate threats who can hold their own against (or resoundingly thump) big-name opponents.
Arcane put on another incredible performance and made his battle against Pat Stay absolutely epic. If you’re still whinging for Organik to kick Cane out of KOTD, then you’d better get over it. Everybody else has.
Honestly, if you’re only at the event to see Drake, then you’re probably one of the people who’s talking through the battles at the back and you’re definitely not reading this blog. If you are, stop talking through the battles.
The rivalry between KOTD and URL was clear at this event, but there’s also a growing animosity between KOTDTO and KOTDWC (first Caustic/Arcane and 100 Bulletz/Dirtbag Dan, but now Osa with Pass and Daylyt). We’d love to see some grudge matches set for Blackout 4.
We caught up with Organik outside the venue after Day 2 had finished:
LUSH ONE’S THOUGHTS
Here’s Lush near the end of Day 3:
POISON PEN’S THOUGHTS
Poison Pen spoke with us just before a battle on Day 3:
Here’s our conversation with Drect, before things got started on Day 1:
TOBB’s WD4 content:
-Everything you missed at WD4 (Day 1)
-Everything you missed at WD4 (Day 2)
-Everything you missed at WD4 (Day 3)
-Final thoughts on WD4
-Overheard at WD4
-Top quotes from the WD4 press conference
-TOBB’s (mildly hilarious) WD4 predictions
-Q&A: Pat Stay speaks on his Arcane battle
-Who should come to WD4?