This past Tuesday, Funk Volume showed up in force to Sway in the Morning, as Hopsin, Jarren Benton and Dizzy Wright sat down with Sway to discuss various topics. The biggest news to come out of the interview? The indie powerhouse put up a challenge to the tune of $500K, claiming they can and would defeat ANY other label in hip-hop today in a 3-on-3 battle. They didn't back down an inch from their challenge when questioned, even when faced with such esteemed names as Shady, TDE, Strange, G.O.O.D. and more. ANYBODY, they say, can get it.
Will this challenge actually happen? Doubtful. Do we want this to happen? Yes. PLEASE BASEDGOD, MAKE IT HAPPEN.
Funk Volume is certainly no joke, and the label has found impressive success with their smaller roster, all of whom are more than capable emcees. Then again, those are some prestigious names they would possibly be going up against. The question is, which three rhymesayers would each label put up to the challenge?
Let's start with Shady. Unfortunately, a tag team of Eminem, Slim Shady and Marshall Mathers is impossible, so we'll have to dig deeper into the roster, which, most definitely includes Slaughterhouse. Sorry Yela, but the remaining two spots are going to have to go to 1/2 of the supergroup, which admittedly is an extremely tough task. Joell takes one of my spots, as no one is fucking with Yaowa. That leaves Crooked I (sorry, I can't get onboard with KXNG CROOKED), Royce and Budden. I'm taking Budden out solely based on his Total Slaughter loss, and as much as I love Royce, I think I might have to take Crooked based solely off the intimidation factor. FINAL SQUAD: Eminem, Joell Ortiz, Crooked I.
Isaiah Rashad, Skepta & Sarkodie: Best of the Week
Isaiah Rashad, Skepta, Sarkodie all released new songs that were selected for Audiomack’s ‘Best of the Week.’
What about TDE? I think it's pretty obvious that Kendrick is a hands-down choice, but deciding between ScHoolboy, Ab-Soul and Jay Rock is a tougher decision then I thought it would be (sorry, Isaiah). Much like Royce, as much as I'd love Q to add his patented brand of humor to the mix, I'm pretty hard pressed to run with Soulo (yea I know about the Daylyt battle) and Rock on the basis of bars and grit. FINAL SQUAD: Kendrick Lamar, Ab-Soul, Jay Rock.
Strange Music is a strange subject, as I'm admittedly not as familiar with the entirety of their roster as I should be. I'll go ahead and hang my head in shame and ask the rap gods for forgiveness. With that said, I'm taking Tech, Krizz and Wreckonize, who has his own deep rap battle history. FINAL SQUAD: Tech N9ne, Krizz Kaliko, Wreckonize.
Um, who's even on G.O.O.D. Music anymore? CyHi is a "No" at this point, right? After a quick look at the roster, rap-wise we're looking at Big Sean, Pusha, Yasiin Bey, Q-Tip and Holt (though I believe the latter is only a singer these days). Oh, and Ye, of course. I don't think anyone will argue with me in saying that Pusha T is as much of a lock as could possibly exist, and I have to throw Kanye in there on the basis that this is G.O.O.D. Music and Kanye is Kanye. The third choice is obvious, though every fiber in my body wants to withhold my last choice until he changes his name back to the greatest rap name in history. FINAL SQUAD: Pusha T, Kanye West, Yasiin Bey (formerly Mos Def).
Sure, we could go through all of the other labels that weren't named and who they might serve up (for example, OVO might choose to send Drake, OB O'Brien and Makonnen), but in all seriousness I think this is a more than worthy group of contenders. Honestly, though, does Funk Volume stand a chance against any of these groups? Are Hopsin, Jarren Benton and Dizzy Wright going to top Em, Joell and Crooked? I have a hard time believing that. K. Dot, Soulo and Rock is a closer challenge, and minus Kendrick I don't doubt for a fact that FV could edge them out. G.O.O.D. takes the cake in my mind, no way you're getting past Pusha, plus Mos Def might bust out some of his new stand-up material. Not to mention Kanye wouldn't take a loss lightly, he's burning the building down before he's coming out the loser. As for Strange, I honestly have no clue...so...um...I'll take Strange? Go Tech.
Obviously, this is all still playing out in my mind, and is one big hypothetical that will likely never come to fruition.... but don't let that stop you from telling me where I went wrong! I expect many will not take kindly to my choices and results, and I'd love to hear who you think would be up to the task, and who might be able to claim victory. Don't wait, the comments section is below. Also, where's SwizZz in all of this?
[By Brendan Varan. He would love nothing more than for this to actually happen in some sort of all out lyrical brawl. Well, maybe free Chipotle for life. Follow him on Twitter.]