In 2013, Loaded Lux brought battle-rap to the mainstream in his legendary battle with Calicoe. The battle currently has over 4 million views, and had celebrities such as Jay-Z and ASAP Rocky quoting his slogan – “you gone get this work.” No battle fan will forget his third round, where he effortlessly broke down Calicoe’s father’s criminal past, and the way Calicoe naively idolized this gangster persona.
In 2014, Charlie Clips battled T-rex, and recreated that same legendary energy in his third round. T-rex was trying to call Clips’ father a snitch, but Clips’ completely turned the angle against him, rebutting every claim and defending his family’s name. It was only a matter of time before Clips and Lux met in the ring to see who could leave the biggest impact on the culture.
Last Saturday, the 26th, Clips and Lux headlined URL’s “Summer Madness 5,” an event at Irving Plaza in New York City trademarked as the “superbowl of battle-rap.” Both Clips and Lux were coming off losses to their previous opponents, Hollow da Don and Murda Mook, and had a ton to prove. This was evident from the jump, as both started off by responding to their critics, Lux by stripping off all his previous costumes down to his core, and Clips by vowing to finally take a battle seriously.
After two rounds, the battle was pretty even, with most fans clearly giving the first to Clips, and edging the second to Lux. Knowing the history of these two battlers, it was going to come down to the third.
It seemed like Clips had put the angle about his father to bed in his bout with T-rex, but Lux brought it back in a creative and powerful way. By the end, Lux had brought out paperwork, seemingly proving that Clips’ father was a snitch, while also seamlessly drawing a comparison to the way Clips is constantly running his mouth through battles. It was up to Clips to come back and once again rebuttal his family’s name, and he tried, weaving freestyles into his material that diffused Lux’s angles.
The result has been heavily debated online, with fans scoring it 2-1 either way. In the building, it seemed like Clips took the victory, with his entertainment and charisma leading fans to chant “3-0.” However, a battle can look very different on camera, and it seems like most battlers and experts are giving it to Lux for his more layered and complex content.
What is more important though, is that the battle lived up to its high expectations and turned out to be a clash of epic proportions. Battles like these are historical, not only because they are entertaining, but also because they tell the untold histories of Harlem. Battles like these transcend wordplay, disses and bars — they are moments of character breakdown and storytelling.
This poll on URL’s website has it currently at 54% to 46% in favor of Clips, who do you think won?