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“Chess Won, And This Is Why” | A Written Editorial Review by Industry Standard
The opinions, beliefs and viewpoints expressed by Industry Standard does not necessarily reflect the opinions and/or beliefs of the Ultimate Rap League or it’s associated entities….except for theDAMNtruth.Mag…because I own them shits…
At times, the casual battle rap fan can be duped into subconsciously accepting a narrative of a battle before they’ve witnessed it, so when they do finally get an opportunity to watch, they’re judging and evaluating a performance based on a premise that may or may not necessarily be accurate. They won’t allow for their opinions to be organically molded. Instead they’re watching with an innate bias of how they feel it should unfold, and nothing can possibly bring down that particular wall of reasoning. In the case of URL’s Rookies Vs Vets, the promotional aspect that reinforced the narrative for this event was focused on the dichotomy of two prevailing thoughts:
(1.) The “Rookies” possess a delusional, blind, over confidence & have no working experience with large audiences, thus having no ability to adapt to unreceptive crowds or any other contretemps that may arise. | “When that coin go in the air, y’all go understand the difference between us and y’all”- Aye Verb from Brizz Rawsteen/Aye Verb In Studio on URLTV | “I been in this situation before, you ain’t never been in this situation”-DNA from Chess/DNA In Studio on URLTV
(2.) The Veterans have become stagnant and are only relevant because they are living off of six to eight year old name equity without providing anything substantive in the ring to live up to their own respective brands. “I’ma’ bring that shit back niggas don’t do no more…that them niggas should be doing..that’s the shit I’ma’ bring back”-T Top from T-Top/Charlie Clips In Studio on URLTV | “The reason they running from us is because they know…I promise they know the moment they step in front of these animals, they go need that SB Verb…we go need that plastic cup Goodz…we go need that Lion’s Den Charlie…nigga we go need that Smack DVD Rex……”-T Top from The Message IV of V on The War Report.
Anecdotal evidence aside, all that matters ultimately is what the lens documents from a historical perspective for the art form, but ostensibly, my interpretation of the footage from March 28th differs from the majority of the URLTV.TV supporters. According to the poll I put up for DNA vs Chess, as of publishing time for this article, DNA is leading the official URLTV.TV polls with a comfortable 59% to 41% margin edge versus Chess. Below is a snap shot of the rationale from some fans for why they feel DNA was victorious over Chess at Rookies Vs Vets:
“That little kid not ready. DNA 3-0.”-Eddie Sille, YouTube comment from DNA vs Chess
“If Chess would have came all rounds like his 3rd it’ll woulda been debatable….”-MrSayNoMoreTv, YouTube comment from DNA vs Chess
“I got @DNA_GTFOH 2-1 Chess was just rapping 1st 2 rnds he wasn’t really battling…”- @Snapparachii from Twitter
Reverence for their opinion in a vacuum aside, I honestly think that the unfamiliarity of Chess’s catalog with a large portion of the casual audience weighs heavy on why the polls reflect the way that they do. Chess’ has a staccato delivery that keeps you engaged. He has an underrated ability to make a listener perceive his setups as punches and vice versa with a simple change of vocal inflection and bar placement.
“This true/ greatness/, mutation, DNA getting fucked/up, put the guns/up, I got/several/, I palm/medal/the 9/get you/, let two bust (bus) in the same spot, that’s MTA behind/schedule/I’ll set/you/on fire/soon as I grab the torch/ dummy/if it’s war/Chess & DNA-that means it’s all/ugly/backing out the sawed off/look like I was removing a sword/from me/wave(?)cause my shotty was tucked in the leg/and you couldn’t tell at all/dummy/cause I already walk/funny/this a body/it won’t be/no/classic/the fans watching/def(death)but they don’t see/no/captions/get 5 from Chess, I caught-a-back (quarterback)/with more bullets than Tim/Tebow/average/step to the plate and get your Babe Ruth’ed/like The Great Bambino/battin’/we keep it tucked like Debo/passing/threatening him with more bars than a P/O/spazzing/tell Clips I keep clips, he/can/see/those ratchets/choppa turn DNA into amino/acids/”- Chess, First round vs DNA
This is an illustration of Chess at his best in my honest opinion. If he orchestrates this differently, any one of these bars could have been a punch to end this particular sequence. This in all is what I feel separates Chess from DNA in this particular battle.
DNA’s first round was solid, but like others, I only gave it to him because of Chess’ short first round. He started off strong:
“Now when I started I was 17, the only thing I used to think back then is that I had/ to rap/I used to dream of the bright lights, the big stage/and getting paid/ like “could you imagine/that?”/then I got the money and fame and all y’all question where my passion/at/so I told Smack give me Chess so he could bring that savage/back/ Welcome to my stage/lil nigga, this vet/is the meanest/two guns to greet’em/the nina dirty but the Wesson the cleaners/if the gun on the left jam and he ain’t done when he see/this/then I’ma’ use the right hand on Chess (chest) that’s the pledge of allegiance/”
I was expecting this iteration of DNA for the entire battle, but I hardly ever saw him again. His clothing line scheme was one that I wanted to transcribe until I got to the word “apparel/a pair will” and realized that he used this vs Tay Roc at Summer Madness 4 in a similar scheme in the first round in his last URL appearance.
Chess gave DNA a golden opportunity to give him the proverbial head shot in the first round, but to bluntly put it, DNA missed. DNA is arguably the greatest freestyle battle emcee in the genre, but his uncharacteristic and truly less than ordinary rebuttal for Chess’ first round mishap is almost as conversation worthy as Chess throwing up on the biggest stage that he has ever performed on. Chess’ frustrations with himself over the incident, to me, was more of an elucidation of his lack of big stage experience than the actual vomiting on stage. You have to have a short memory on stage, especially when you’re facing the best battle rap talent in the world. If DNA’s rebuttal would have been more effective, that combined with Chess’ visual frustration with himself may have been enough to take full advantage of his lack of stage experience and take him mentally out of his game.
Round 2 is where it is more important than ever to be an individual and really learn to appreciate the content being delivered in order to make a honest opinion based on your own merit. Chess begins:
“To all the vets in the building, mutha fucka this stage/is ours/the vets (veterinarian) dealing with animals they can’t tame/at all/I”m crazy/dog/run in his crib/but this PG killa never raided/ours/(rated r)/he lost his mind from the heat/like he’s having a/mirage/”
I felt this was a solid opener, but the narrative of this round is that Chess gave us quite a few quotables, some to little to no fan fair in the building. “40 pouring in his egg, I’m like Steel in the kitchen”…::crickets::
I felt Chess was consistent throughout this round with little to no low points at all while being able to win the crowd back. He wasn’t timid, but DNA’s presence in the first, combined with Chess’ first round troubles contributed to deflating the room in DNA’s favor in the beginning of his round.
“This nigga better have the most fire Chess schemes in the world!”-Chess | Chess/DNA In Studio
I felt DNA was a bit too predictable. Yes he did have a Chess scheme, as expected. Unfortunately, there isn’t any variation of a Chess scheme that an 11 year old couldn’t think of at this point and time, so much like the NORAD Supercomputer in the movie Wargames learned, the only way to “win” was to not play at all. I felt DNA had the momentum to begin his 2nd round, and was in an amazing position where he should have honestly exploited the first round “gift” for all it was worth and taken an early win after taking round one on a technicality, and winning round two by pouncing on the momentum gained from the unfortunate events in round one like the veteran, world renowned battle emcee that he is, but this didn’t happen.
I felt with his freestyle ability, he should have called an audible and began his round a bit more seriously instead of with jokes. I think his setups & attacks at Chess’ crew were sloppily arranged, his scheming, although semi creative, fell flat because it felt like we’ve heard it before, and that he squandered an excellent opportunity to make this battle not debatable. I gave the second round to Chess.
The third round, much like the first, is a clear and decisive nod for most, but for my taste I didn’t see much of a difference between Chess’ second and Chess’ third, but that isn’t necessarily a bad thing since I liked them both. I felt they both were very consistent. His bellicose demeanor on stage coupled with a straight forward attack embodies street corner battle rap, which is what Smack/URL’s roots are. Ironically, DNA’s third round left me with a similar feeling to how I felt after his third round gimmick attempt from the battle that he borrowed this idea from vs K-Shine two years ago. Although his wordplay was clever in spurts, It felt forced and unnatural. It was difficult to follow at times, and I never felt that way through Chess’ last two rounds. As unpopular as it may sound, and as much hate as he received in the building that night, the DNA that battled Tay Roc would have taken this W in my opinion. That iteration of DNA seemed more focused than the DNA that we witnessed at Rookies Vs Vets.
Although I feel that DNA is a more talented overall battle emcee than Chess, I feel his performance lacked dexterity where it mattered on this night. His four bar build ups have become too formulaic in nature, and most people who are truly listening will inherently subconsciously dismiss the first two or three bars while awaiting the forth. In addition, I feel that scheming, for most emcees, without a punch or an effective statement within the scheme is a waste of time and comes across as something that any hard core fan could accomplish by playing a simple game of word association. Given the predictability factor of DNA’s round structure in this particular battle in stark contrast to Chess’ earlier alluded to staccato delivery, it makes it a bit difficult from a performance aspect to say that the veteran DNA “out performed” the “rookie” Chess, and in addition to, I felt that he was also “out barred” by Chess as well. I give this battle to Chess, 2-1, with him slightly edging rounds 2 and 3.
At the end of the day, DNA is still a world class battle emcee. He has a battle vs a legend in Serius Jones at URL’s Night of Main Events V on May 9th, as well as having two battles in one night on KOTD’s MASSACRE card vs Dirtbag Dan & 40 B.A.R.R.S, respectfully. Contrary to his statements in his In Studio with Chess, a loss to Chess would and has had virtually no effect on his marketability, and to some in the culture, they actually feel that he is over saturated. I feel that the DNA vs Serius Jones will take a completely different approach than this DNA, but I can’t make the same assertion for the one that will face Dirtbag Dan and 40 B.A.R.R.S.
Chess, although I gave him the win, would benefit largely if he worked on resisting the temptation to force too many words between measures. His apparent big stage breathing issues would be greatly rectified if he slightly modifies the spacing of his words, but I’m quite sure he will adjust without a “Monday quarterback” such as myself offering any advice. Chess’ future is paved, and DNA’s path was never in any fear of being obstructed. It’s a win/win for them both in the big scheme of things.
@theDAMNtruthMAG <–That’s where I be at on twitter…hit them shits…..