Another year, another BET Hip Hop Awards. I’m not sure who the genius behind the idea of the Cypher portion of the show is, but that mofo has had me watching BET (albeit once a year) for the last 3 years. But enough about me, let’s break down the performances:
Nicki Minaj kicked things off with a pretty hot verse. Honestly, it seems almost sacrilegious to have someone like Minaj spit bars with Preemo spinning in the background, but she actually came ahead with one of the hottest verses in this portion. Buckshot’s verse was kinda low-par compared to his usual shit, and definitely didn’t seem noteworthy (even after 3 viewings!). Maybe I missed what he was going for. Who knows? The cypher contest winner, Crown Royyal, came pretty hard on his part and I really liked his verse, despite my hatred of the word swag. But the best verse of this portion, and one of the best of the night definitely goes to Joe Budden. Joe’s verse was ridiculous! That line about Serena Williams?! I practically fell out of my damn chair.
When I heard Wale would be in the cypher this year I was HYPED to hear what he would come with. You can’t imagine my disappointment when I watched this dude rap and could barely hear a thing!! They need to fire that sound guy, cause I had to turn up the volume hella loud and listen to it like 4 times just to hear what this dude was saying. As for the verse, it had a lot of dense wordplay, the kind of shit I expected to hear from a dude like Wale. I enjoyed it, but I recommend you turn the sound up for his portion so you can enjoy it too. Nipsey Hussle’s verse was pretty boring. I usually like this dude’s shit but it seemed like his delivery and flow were kind of off. Gsan is a rapper from Tanzania. I don’t speak Swahili, but dude’s flow seemed kinda nice. I guess they had him on as like a foreign exchange, the same way they had that Japanese rapper Hime last year. Last to go was KRS-ONE (BET spelled it KRS-1 smh). His flow was nothing amazing, but it was good, as always. He seemed like the only dude freestyling on this whole thing. The best verse of this portion goes to Wale, but unfortunately it was followed by the segment that made me forget ALL the other rappers.
The last segment featured Mos Def, Black Thought, and Eminem. Did I already call the dude who made this part of the award show a genius? Mos Def’s verse was so dense that I had to listen to it 3 times and I still think I missed some of the hotness. I really believed it couldn’t get any hotter… until Black Thought came on. This dude’s verse was ridiculous. Some real gritty shit that could not have possibly been a freestyle. Then came Marshall. He was talking about raping people, fucking Miley Cyrus and Taylor Swift, and doing drugs. Needless to say, a lot of his INSANE verse was censored. I can’t wait to hear the uncut version of this verse.
The actual award show was mildly entertaining. The only performance I was really checking for was the one from the Goodie Mob. It’s nice to see these dudes back together, but I feel like BET could have made their performance a little more polished. I’m looking forward to next year’s cyphers. Maybe they’ll get somone like Jay or Nas to come rip it, or maybe they’ll have OJ Da Juiceman. Let’s pray for the former.