King of the Dot’s Vendetta 2 Redemption card mostly lived up to its name in Los Angeles last night. The event was to make up for Blackout 4′s six unexpected cancellations but of the three rescheduled battles, only Bender vs Big T went down. Ill Will backed out against Real Deal, citing contractual obligations to BET, and Shotty Horroh was replaced by Caustic as Aye Verb’s opponent with two weeks’ notice.
Despite those early setbacks, it was a great event with lots of impressive performances from some of the best battle MCs in the world, cheered on by a generous and well-behaved crowd. The venue was much smaller than the massive rooms we’ve seen in Toronto recently, holding around 500 people comfortably. The stage was only a couple of feet high and the battlers were surrounded by people which should result in footage similar to that of Battle of the Bay 6 — which is a good thing.
To a certain extent, this was the URL vs KOTD card that fans have been demanding for years. That no one really noticed shows how much overlap there now is between the leagues and their rosters.
Overall, the tone of the battles gave clear indication that a combination of complex wordplay, rapid-fire punches and dense lyricism is the dominant style in battling today. Our only request for the next card is that we get a bit more comedy to break up the encyclopedia’s worth of bars we’re getting shouted at us in a night.
**You can watch all these battles on PPV now, at KOTD.TV**
Redemption. It’s what you seek when you know you can do better.
The idea works on two levels for King of the Dot’s upcoming event in Los Angeles.
First, KOTD is seeking redemption for the “Vendetta” legacy. The first Vendetta event, in 2012, will always be remembered as “that time Canibus died in front of a live audience.” In some ways, that battle launched KOTD — and battle culture as a whole — to a wider audience, although it probably wasn’t the ideal foot to put forward…
Second, KOTD needs to redeem itself from the disappointments at Blackout 4. After a series of uncontrollable circumstances at Toronto’s January event, six battles were cancelled, including many of the weekend’s most-anticipated matchups. Scores were left unsettled and there was a feeling of incompleteness for fans, battlers and KOTD staff.
This card is serious business. There are no novelty battles. There are no throwaway battles. Every matchup is dripping with potential and every battler has proved he can deliver on the main stage.
We reached out to the KOTD staff to get their impressions on the card. Here’s what they said:
Kingfly – KOTD Toronto
“When we announced the card, the matchup was Aye Verb vs Shotty Horroh. I was really excited to see Shotty’s return to battling after his hiatus. Shotty is easily the Number 1 battler from the U.K. and he was taking on “Mr. Showtime,” who many consider to be one of the top battlers today.
When Shotty told me he couldn’t make it I was disappointed but moreso concerned with what was going on with him personally. Personal life always trumps battle rap. But Caustic is a good replacement. This is a big opportunity for him so he won’t come light. And knowing him, he’ll have dirt on Verb so it should be entertaining.”
Well, KOTD did it again. Even with the bar raised so high from WD4, the West Coast stepped up and put on an event worthy of the BOTB name. We have a lot to say about the event itself, but stay tuned for all of it in another article and/or podcast.
For now though, let’s get right to the battles.
The West is back.
King of the Dot is bringing back Battle of the Bay, the long-dormant series of events still seen by many as the best in battle rap’s history. With BOTB5, many believed the culture had reached its apex, but with the return, KOTD hopes to prove that the West is just getting warmed up.
After the massive success of the World Domination 4 event this summer in Toronto, the league is looking to keep up its momentum with an event that already has the culture buzzing. BOTB6 pits West Coast all-stars against their counterparts from the rest of the United States.
With a deep talent pool of Cali legends and a new crop of impressive up-and-comers to draw from, it shouldn’t be long before the West reclaims its national crown. And with their scene’s reputation on the line, the stakes couldn’t be higher.
This text is from the official KOTD program we wrote for the event in collaboration with KBomb. We’ll be in the building for both Day 1 and 2. Follow us on Twitter for live updates, on Facebook for next-day recaps and on Instagram for photos. For our Day 1 preview, click here.
DIZASTER VS AYE VERB
Los Angeles, California
Dizaster: the name conjures up images of chaos, mayhem and destruction – all terms that could be applied to the MC himself. One of the best-known battle rappers in the world, Dizaster has separated himself from the pack by being one of the most versatile, unpredictable, and intense MCs in the game. Coming up in the GrindTime era, Dizaster has battled fellow Fresh Coasters The Saurus and Illmaculate, and has since gone on to jump in the ring with Arsonal, T-Rex, and even Canibus. One of the hottest commodities around, the Los Angeles based rapper has traveled worldwide to battle, including visits to England’s Don’t Flop, Australia’s Got Beef?, and Sweden’s O-Zone. With his unique style, Dizaster picks apart his opponents with his incredible freestyle ability and energetic performance. Up against one of his toughest challengers to date, Dizaster will have his hands full in this main event against Aye Verb.
St. Louis, Missouri
A discussion on the greatest battlers of all time would be remiss without including Aye Verb’s name. One of the key players in putting the St. Louis scene on the map, Verb not only holds one of the greatest battle legacies, but also founded the Word War league, which has produced its fair share of classics. Aye Verb first caught people’s attention after an amazing performance against SB in New York, and was soon challenging the likes of Hollow Da Don, Marv Won, and Math Hoffa, each time proving his reputation as a killer is well-deserved. This battle against Dizaster is Verb’s KOTD debut and has massive potential to be a classic.
100 Bulletz is arguably the best battler to come out of King of the Dot’s Ground Zero league. Since debuting on GZ in early 2011, he’s quickly climbed the ranks of the main channel, with matches against veterans like Arcane, Kid Twist and, most recently, Dirtbag Dan. Next weekend, he faces his toughest opponent to date: The Saurus in Don’t Flop. We spoke with Bulletz shortly after the match-up was announced, and he revealed how he approaches battles, whether his URL debut will get released, and which leagues have the best and worst crowds.
How did the battle with The Saurus come together?
We were both at the same Don’t Flop event last October. It was his first time at Don’t Flop. It was my first time. And we both had pretty solid performances. I think this is the link. He had a rough third, and I had a rough third. It’s like, ‘Bring Bulletz back, bring The Saurus back, and we’ll put them against each other and see what they do.’ It’s actually been in talks since back in January. We were maybe going to battle on Eurgh’s birthday event.