There’s no real debate on who was the best MC in the 2013 BET Hip-Hop Awards cyphers; Kendrick Lamar won the fight weeks before the bell rang.
“Nothing’s been the same since they dropped ‘Control’/and tucked a sensitive rapper back in his pajama clothes/Ha! Ha! Jokes on you!” are the rap bars of the fall and it’s not even on an official song.
For the Compton champ to follow his verse of the year (impact alone) on Big Sean’s summer throwaway “Control” and resulting bedlam in rapper world by poking the open wounds of MC’s still healing from being called out is just gladiator shenanigans.
Nonetheless, while K did take home the cypher crown, there was some stiff and very innovative competition, mainly by the Slaughterhouse crew. Check the other nine (b)architectures that complete VIBE’s BET Award Cypher Top 10 and let us know what you think. We even decoded them so you know it’s real. Hit it, Preemo! –Bonsu Thompson
2. “All that beef and scrappin’/like Miley Cyrus twerkin’ something’s supposed to be shakin but I never see it happen.” –Joe Budden
Breakdown: Many an MC pontificates on their willingness to engage in off-the-record conflict, by many means, whether via fisticuffs or other. Joey expects and awaits the in-person offense. Unfortunately, comparable to Miley Cyrus’ “twerkin’”––a dance initially enhanced by the motioned curvature of well-endowed women––with an inability to showcase the jiggle portion of the performance, Jumpoff’s expectations never manifest.
3. “I’m more Pappy Mason than Pastor Mason/pacing back & forth/racing my thoughts/on embracing Daytons.” –Kendrick Lamar
Breakdown: K. Dot divulges that his mind state is much closer to that of Howard “Pappy” Mason, one of New York City’s most notorious and ruthless gangsters from the ’80s crack era, than of the former Bad Boy superstar rapper turned preacher. For some reason, the TDE leader finds himself aimlessly walking to and from in short intervals, wrestling with the idea of accepting one of America’s leading car rims.
4. “Literally unimpressed/with who y’all pick to be the best/so if I’m choosing where to aim it’ll be his head/to kill whoever’s nice––now chivalry is dead.” –Joe Budden
Breakdown: Mr. Budden already isn’t in line with whom hip-hop’s consensus has deemed the cream of the MC crop. Hypothetically speaking, he tells that an effort to exterminate the anointed would incline him to attempt a headshot. Hip-hop refers to the highly skilled lyricist as “nice.” Niceness is a characteristic imbued in the act of chivalry. If the “nice” MC is shot in the head (lyrically speaking) than chivalry will be deceased.
5. “Gold seven and the car dash crack like Lamar Odom” –Joell Ortiz
Breakdown: Senor Ortiz braggingly notes that is vehicle is a gold-hued BMW 7-Series, cleverly comparing the infectiousness of his automobile’s favorite feature––its dashboard––to crack cocaine. The liquid sword-like play on words references the rumored crack addiction of Khloe Kardashian’s husband Lamar Odom, who normally plays under the uniform #7.
6. “Only demand I got is I ain’t sharing no spots/I’ll light your baby mamma’s house on fire while she in it then turn around and say it’s a parent [apparent] who hot.” –Royce Da 5’9″
Breakdown: Detroit’s most lyrical African-American refuses to share creative real estate with any of his rap peers. He emphasizes this stance by informing anyone not on board with his decision that he’s capable of committing arson on the home of their mothers child, only to make three statements with one tongue: 1. It’s obvious that he is one of the popular rappers. 2. It’s evident that a child’s guardian is enduring an immense amount of heat. 3. It’s likely that the child’s father is perturbed (and sweaty).
7. “So street you gotta look both ways before you cross me.” -Crooked I
Breakdown: The Long Beach representative repurposed the age-old instruction “Look both ways before crossing the street” for a personal warning to those contemplating deception: I embody the lifestyle and codes of the underworld so organically and efficiently that you should seriously reconsider.
8. “Soul brother #2 the first one used to make beats for CL Smooth/Top got the S550 but the CL smooth/and rolling weed is the only time I see L’s move.” –Ab-Soul
Breakdown: Staying true to his moniker, Ab first recognizes that his predecessor is legendary producer Pete Rock aka Soul Brother #1. He then informs that the head of his label, Top Dawg, drives a Mercedes luxury sedan, but adds that the CL-Class Coupe is extremely sleek. Soul caps the poetic thread with his favorite pastime: twisting marijuana into blunts and/or tobacco paper (Ganja is often referred to as “La” and when rolled up, abbreviated to “L’s”).
9. “From doing me I stayed in the pocket/now all I’m doing is trying to give Halle Berry a baby today then outtie tomorrow; after that, maybe Drake can adopt it.” –Royce Da 5’9″
Breakdown: Royce credits his relevancy, after embattled years in the rap game, to never wavering his individuality. Content with his journey, his goals today are capped by desires of impregnating the sexiest black actress of our last twenty years, then abandoning her within 24 hours. He suggests that Aubrey Graham possibly step in as legal guardian, as the Canadian rapper has already vocalized his desire to father a child with Halle on Migos’ “Versace.”
10. “Y’all knew that I was ill, but now my doctor is Dre.” –Jon Connor
Breakdown: The Flint, Michigan rookie reminds those familiar with him that they’ve known of his immense talent for a while, but now that he’s the latest signee of Dr. Dre’s Aftermath label, the maestro behind 50 Cent and Eminem will be taking his ability to new heights.