“Word! My flow’s bizarre like Japan, my raps be tight like Saran. Your flow be wicked sleep-inducing like turkey tryptophan.” Now, we would never be able to come up with such a lyrical lashing given mere seconds of preparation in a freestyle battle, but the MC’s who showed up to the Freestyle Battle at Paramount last Sunday night made it their business to do exactly that.
6 challengers for the King of the Mic throne battled in several rounds throughout the evening, with a variety of styles (and even languages) featured, including the gruff, the comical, the aggressive, and the smooth as a rap video booty lathed in baby oil.
The evening featured things we’d never seen in a rap battle before, including a battle occurring between MC’s speaking differing languages (English and French), and the British contestant MC Newman mixing Chinese into his lyrics. The language barrier for the mostly Chinese audience did little to deter the enthusiasm for the battles between the contestants, who were all showmen in their own right.
The crown for illest MC belonged to Armani D of Long Beach, California, who won the crowd over with his consistently unflappable demeanor and seasoned style, showing the audience that he’d obviously done this sort of thing before.
The latest edition of the freestyle battle happens tonight at Paramount, with the final taking place on the 24th. If seeing lyricists trying to outwit and outlast each other is your cup of tea, heading down to Paramount will be the best decision you made this weekend. Holla.
UPDATE: Tonight’s Round 2 of King of the Mic has been canceled! Regular programming including dancing girls and dance beats will still take place as scheduled.