We wuz robbed!
Branching off from my post the other day about the Knux, and in the interest of wringing every last bit of amusement from the cover of this month's issue of XXL, as if it was the only pr0n video you owned when you were 17 (ah, life before the Internets), I figured I'd take a look at 10 artists who didn't make the cut and try to guess why they didn't.
Without further ado...
Vic's name: Bishop Lamont
Who he be: Yet another one of these guys who signed a deal with Aftermath, and, surprise, his album never came out. He probably wrote some stuff on Detox, which is never gonna come out, either. (Feel free to prove me wrong, Andre.) Dr. Dre probably figured it'd be cheaper to just buy some kid off the street and keep stringing him along, rather than have to pay guys like Jay-Z and Royce the 5'9 to write his shit. In that sense, he's the hip-hop equivalent of the fat vampire Jason Stackhouse keeps chained in his basement on True Blood.
How he got caught slippin': What's the point in putting a rapper on the cover of XXL, if he's never gonna release anything other than mixtapes? Even Lil' Wayne eventually put out an album. If Interscope had any faith in this guy putting an album out any time soon, you know good and well a phone call would have been made.
Vic's name: Black Milk
Who he be: The best new producer evar. He did some joints on those post-Dilla Slum Village albums, then he had a big breakthrough last year with his album, Popular Demand. This year, he produced Elzhi's The Preface, smart people's favorite rap album of the moment, and the much-anticipated follow-up to Popular Demand, Tronic.
How he got caught slippin': Lack of commercial prospects. Even the inexplicable, requisite song for the bitches on Tronic, "Without U," is far too basement-sounding to fit in a playlist with T.I.'s simp anthem "Whatever You Like." I would add that his rappin' ability is such that he ought to stick to beat-making, but obviously that's not gonna be an issue in this day and age.
Vic's name: Cool Kids
Who he be: The hipster rap duo out of Chicago that's trying to take hip-hop back to 1988 by riding around on BMX bikes, wearing rope chains Starter jackets.
How he got caught slippin': Their debut album, or EP or whatever it was, The Bake Sale (600 copies sold to date and counting...), didn't sound like anything I couldn't have come up with, if I could figure out how to plug a microphone into my laptop.
Vic's name: Donny Goines
Who he be: The guy who claims he lives in a small room in his mom's apartment, but I'm pretty sure it's actually a walk-in closet. His material turns up on Nah Right as often as any of the guys who did make the cover.
How he got caught slippin': That whole living in a walk-in closet thing might not be the best marketing angle. I never thought I'd find myself saying this, but he might seriously want to think about dealing drugs for a while, before he takes another run at a rap career. Not only will he make enough money to get his own place, but it'll give him something to rap about. You know crack rap isn't going out just because we got a black guy in office.
Vic's name: Jay Electronica
Who he be: The guy who got the LCD set to pretend to like songs that sound like they could have been done by Killah Priest. Seriously, is it because he's dropping it off in Erykah Badu, and the okayplayer crowd is composed primarily of women? I'm not complaining or anything. (That Sunz of Man album was slept on.) I'm just saying. I might need to hold my nose and holler at Chrisette Michele. This economy's probably not gonna get any better any time soon, despite President-Elect Obama pushing for another round of stimulus checks, or, as I'll be calling mine, reparations.
How he got caught slippin': There's something about the look in his eyes that tells me he's holding a deep, dark secret.
Vic's name: Kidz in the Hall
Who he be: The gulliest of the hipster rap set. Try to gank a bottle of vodka from them at your own risk.
How he got caught slippin': There's too many of us in the hip-hop community who are old enough that, if we really want to hear a rap song that sounds like it was made in 1993, we'll just spend half the day tearing our houses apart looking for our copies of Midnight Marauders.
Vic's name: The Knux
Who he be: I'm surprised at how many of you must never read blogs other than The Workout. I made the mistake of doing a post on these dudes the other day, and the response was a resounding, "Um, who?" Seriously though, if you're one of us haters who didn't find OutKast to be particularly notable until Aquemini, and especially Stankonia, you're gonna wanna check out Remind Me in Three Days.
How he got caught slippin': As revealed here the other day,
my dick is huge Interscope's marketing plan for these guys calls for setting them apart from the rest of the hip-hop community. Look out for them on the cover of an upcoming issue of SPIN.
Vic's name: Mic Terror
Who he be: My favorite hipster rapper evar. He handed that guy Mazzi his ass, in their beef over hipster rappers wearing those Rachel Ray terrorist scarves and what have you. Then I went and copped his mixtape, which is nothing but songs about how he steals guys' girlfriends and drops loads on their faces, Nick Manning-style. If I had a girlfriend at present, I'd be honored if he dropped a load on her. (Of course, I'd need her to hose off before I let her back in the house.)
How he got caught slippin': That guy Mazzi must have put his career on hold. Doesn't he work for Def Jam in some capacity? He claims to be a Persian (which is about as different from an Arab as you can be, I'm told), but he's probably really a Jew.
Vic's name: Termanology
Who he be: Pick up any underground rap album released in 2008, and there's a 1 in 3 chance you'll hear some vaguely Puerto Rican-sounding kid kicking this silly whisper flow. That kid's name is Termanology.
How he got caught slippin': I just needed somebody to pad the list out to 10 artists. This guy obviously has no commercial prospects. His album's got a pretty killer production lineup, though. He should try to get a job at Def Jam and become Nas' A&R. Someone get that guy Mazzi on the phone. Tell him never mind what I said about his being like an Arab.
Vic's name: Yak Ballz
Who he be: Another Pesian guy, actually. The fuck? His album from earlier this year, Scifentology II, or whatever the fuck it's called, was highly slept on. It's like a JV version of the most recent albums by Cage and El-P.
How he got caught slippin': Last year, El-P put out the best album of the year, arguably of the decade, and all he got was about two lines worth of mention in the underground rap column, which is buried way in the back of the book, across from the pr0n ads. What the fuck do you guys think this is, URB magazine?