As previously mentioned, here is my year-end recap of battle rap scene in 2013.

Here are my guidelines I established back in June:

  • Upload dates must be either in December 2012, or in 2013

Different leagues have their own schedules of when they choose to upload battles, whether on YouTube or on their own sites. So when events occur near the end of the year, the battles from those events end up being spread out from December and leaking into January. I think it’s unfair to leave a battle off this recap because of the upload date. So I decided to allow battles that were uploaded in December of 2012 make this list. December battles deserve to be considered for a year-end list, it’s just unfortunate that because they bubble up in December, they don’t get the looks.

  • Favorite performances are different from favorite battles

It doesn’t go both ways. My favorite battles means both MCs (or teams) need to have great performances. But, if one person has a good performance but the other didn’t, that can’t make it as a favorite battle.  So I have two lists: favorite performances, and favorite battles.

One final note: An appearance in the favorite performances list does not mean that battle can’t make it to the favorite battles list.

Favorite Performances

Madness (2nd Round) vs. Psychosis Holocaust – Don’t Flop

Those Arnold bars still get me.

Real Deal (Entire Battle) vs Young Kannon – URL

Real Deal (Entire Battle) vs Sammy Wild 100s – ENJ Battle Grounds

Real Deal had a great year. He had a great battle in the summer against Rone, solid three rounds for Tony D (although Tony D forgot his rhymes in that battle). There’s also lesser-known battles against Bigg K and Aye Dot I also enjoyed. But, I chose his entire battle with both Young Kannon and Sammy due to being a case of greater than the sum of its parts. Witty lines, great structure, strong punchlines, and a clean delivery.

Real Deal also provided my two favorite lines in all of battle rap this year. Against Kannon, “You’d probably convert to Islam in the back of a patrol car.” Against Sammy he said, “I’m trying to see you make it/I hope your fat ass gets a foot in the door before diabetes takes it.”

That Biggie line was also a monster. I also enjoyed the safe places scheme. Damn, Real, I need to move on. You killed it this year.

Calicoe (1st Round) vs T-Rex – URL

Calicoe kept it relativity quiet this year. After his battle against Daylyt, he came roaring back on the URL’s biggest event of the year, Summer Madness against T-Rex. With lines like, “With that gun on the top of your lip, where you gonna go, T?” I loved his Dot Mob (T-Rex’s crew) name flip, “They say the venues be packed man, that’s why I’m eating all the dots.” Good to see Calicoe back.

Hitman Holla vs Conceited (Both Round 1) – URL

I think the battle lost its steam the longer it went on, but the first rounds for both Hitman and Conceited are so entertaining. Hitman has performance locked down, it seemed like every scheme was effective. He also chose the perfect line to do his signature remix slogan. Although the “Fuck Shotgun Suge, we’ll have Suge gun-shot” wasn’t directed at Con, first time I heard it, I literally jumped out of my chair and left the room. Don’t forget about Conceited, either. There was a reason why he was on Wild ‘n Out. Funny bars that makes sense toward addressing Hitman’s image and persona. Con’s line of, “I don’t know what C’s you’re scarred of seeing more, the Crips, or your grades?” still makes me laugh.

Favorite Battles

I’m gonna quote myself for these two battles from the mid-year recap:

Math Hoffa vs Hitman Holla – King Juce

To watch any King Juce battle, you have to go to their website and pay for a membership. The footage is out proper, but that video did have some audio issues with both the equipment and the St. Louis crowed overpowered the battle. Luckily, both Math and Hitman put out their rounds, so people can watch their battle without the crowd reaction.

There are a lot of memorable lines. From their 1st rounds, with Hitman with the “I’m 6’2, you measure my heart, I’ll be 7’5,” and Math with, “Ya’ll put me in the right with ya’ll West Side rider/Hazelwood Basketball Scholar?” This is a must-watch, especially with the no crowd version.

Pass vs. RemyD – King of the Dot

Don’t sleep on this battle. A clash of great flows. It’s Pass’ performance and delivery ability vs Remy’s mult-syllabic stacking and wordplay, but neither are weak in each other’s category. I’ve watched this battle a couple of times, and I still don’t know who won. Re-watchable for days.

Charron vs DNA – King of the Dot

In the beginning, when two rappers battled, it was spontaneous and true freestyles that came off-the-top. Both Charron and DNA made their names being able to mix their writtens with incredible freestyle ability.

Illmaculate vs Bigg K – King of the Dot

Damn. Everyone wins in this battle. Such a great back and forth between the two. Part of me was worried that the potential of this battle wouldn’t be met in reality. I’m glad to say that that isn’t the case.

Tsu Surf vs Hollow Da Don – URL

Talk about back and forth. This is by far the best battle from the URL event NOME (Night Of Main Events). Unlike Hitman vs Conceited, this not only maintained the energy and entertainment value, it actually got better over the course of the battle. To not include this battle in a list of favorite battles would be an oversight.