No battle rap event in recent years is complete without a vascular hit of controversy. That metaphor was crafted in the wake of the latest Cadalack Ron uproar, but it can apply to any fight, Eurgh-directed spitting incident, lines gone awry (thinking again of Cadalack’s Zimmerman bar) or snatched Crip bandanas. Drama follows the form around like a hound. Keep in mind: all of these vague references to the already-well-documented moments above are from the last twelve months.
It’s only apt then, in the shadow of these recent controversies, that Dizaster, on home turf, waited until the end of his headline BOLA 5 word-fight against Math Hoffa, and without hesitation unleashed a barrage of punches that continued long after his opponent had left a vertical stance. Various crowd members stepped in to both add punches and break it up. Barriers were scattered and equipment was damaged in the process.
[UPDATE - July 15] We’ve done recaps for all the episodes now. Check our first impressions below, and Ep. 2, Ep. 3 and Ep. 4 on BattleRap.com.
Tonight was the debut of “The Road to Total Slaughter” reality show on Fuse TV, which probably features at least one of your favourite battle rappers. The show stars Aye Verb, Big T, Dizaster, Marv Won, Daylyt, Arsonal, Cortez, T-Rex and Math Hoffa, who live together in a house for a week as they compete in a tournament against each other. Between battles, they’re “mentored” by Loaded Lux and Murda Mook.
The first episode didn’t spend much time introducing the characters to the broader audience, instead taking more of a fly-on-the-wall approach and letting the battlers reveal their personalities as they bantered and argued about YouTube views and win-loss records. For the most part it had a casual reality TV feel to it, cutting head-on monologues with unrehearsed group conversations.
Battle rap is a numbers game. But now that it’s rare for battles to be judged, there aren’t any official win-loss records competitors can compare. So battlers (and leagues) chase different statistics: views, followers and fans. We at T.O. Battle Blog have dug into the facts and figures to see who’s really winning.
For whatever reason, February was a relatively weak month for battles, even with the release of KOTD’s much-hyped title match. Regardless, between the obvious choices and a couple hidden gems, we cobbled together a respectable list of four great battles, plus a bonus pick that’s worth your time.
You might know Mos Prob as a former Don’t Flop rapper (who made our Best of 2013 list) or maybe as half of “that battle rap engagement couple” with his American MC fiancé Rapunsell. What you might not realize about Adam “Mos Prob” Felman is that he’s also a massively entertaining writer. One that you’ll be reading a lot more from now that he’s the newest staff writer for T.O. Battle Blog.
Against all odds, Saturday was a great night for battling. Despite the no-shows, the chatty crowd and dead energy on Friday, Day 2 featured some outstanding battles, bringing the much-hyped Blackout 4 to a satisfying close. You can read our Day 1 recap here.
First off, a quick note on the no-shows. Six battlers did not show up in Toronto this weekend. (Organik went into specifics in this RMBVA post.) Here is the list of them, along with their opponents in brackets: RemyD (Osa), JC (Rone), Ill Will (Real Deal), Aye Verb (Shotty Horroh), Rich Dolarz (Loe Pesci) and Big T (Bender). It sounds as if King of the Dot is trying to make Shotty/Verb and T/Bender happen soon, even if that means sending Bender and Shotty to the States. Stay tuned.
Back to Saturday’s battles. Credit must be given to the MCs on the bottom half of the card. They set a good tone for the day and did a fine job of engaging the crowd. Speaking of which, the crowd for Day 2 was not only better than the previous day’s, but was arguably the most respectful KOTD audience in Toronto in some time. It’s amazing the degree to which a receptive, engaged crowd can enhance the quality of the battle.
Now, onto the battles. And remember: there will be plenty of spoilers.