You might have noticed that there's a battle going on over rap battle formats. In one corner, there's the traditional shit, in which MCs face off over instrumentals and are expected to spit legit freestyles in the spirit of the dozens. In the other corner, there's what you might call the "new" battling - popularized by Grind Time among others - in which rappers know who they're battling ahead of time, get to write and memorize their rhymes, and spit a capella.
I’m not packing clothes
for this year’s CMJ Marathon in New
York City. In fact, I’m not even bringing down a
laptop. Instead of spending five straight days inhaling various poisons,
feverishly blogging on the same nonsense that everyone else is covering, and
ransacking my weathered eardrums with out-of-tune guitar shreds and swollen
bass lines, I’m limiting my trip to one day and two nights, and seeing how much
I can cram in.