In hip-hop, it’s one thing to ride hard for your respective side of the country. It’s another thing entirely to declare yourself the undisputed bicoastal titan, and call out a laundry list of successful peer MCs you want to eradicate from the history books.
That’s the bombshell Kendrick Lamar dropped Monday night when his guest verse on Big Sean’s “Control (HOF)” debuted on Funkmaster Flex’s New York City radio show.
It is, shall we say, a shot across the bow.
In his bars, the Compton-raised Lamar drolly declares himself the “King of New York,” and gives Jay-Z, Nas, Andre 3000 and Eminem a pass from his wrath. But then he proceeds to dismantle almost every one of his contemporaries on rap radio -- Drake, A$AP Rocky, J. Cole and Tyler, the Creator among them (but, weirdly, Kanye West doesn’t get a mention either way). Even Big Sean, whose track sports Lamar’s verse, doesn’t get off easy.
“I got love for you all but I’m tryna murder you . . .” he says. “Tryna make sure your core fans never heard of you . . . / They don’t wanna hear not one more noun or verb from you . . .”
Well, at least Mac Miller is probably stoked that Lamar thinks of him as a peer worth sparring with.
The song was scheduled to appear on Sean’s upcoming “Hall of Fame” album, but reportedly had samples that couldn’t clear and was leaked to Flex’s show. We look forward to the many, many, many responses this verse will surely yield in the coming weeks.