Battle Rap is one of the purest forms of rap because it is what keeps an emcees penmanship at it’s highest level. But it is all to easy to forget that battle rap encompasses more than solid writing and good delivery. Performance is just as important as all other facets of the art. It is performance that can often be the deciding factor in a very close battle. When the bars are equal across the board, a critic has to start looking at other elements of the battle to determine a victor. In Mack Mel, we are looking at some of the best performance in the culture right now. It is difficult to deny that his performance adds a lot to his overall delivery and is often a crowd thief. BattleScene is featuring him in our Battle Rappers of The Future category because he is a testimony to the power of performance and its overall effectiveness in battle.
The first time I saw Mack Mel battle was against AB-Eaze and I was instantly caught off guard by his performance. In fact, we were so caught off guard at BattleScene that we created a new category on the site just for such eccentric performances and called it “Over The Top”. Though this battle has flown under the radar of many battle rap fans, it remains one of the most memorable battles I’ve ever seen. All I have to do is think of Mels performance in the battle and I have to either chuckle or outright laugh. Some may take that as an insult to the battle or think that one can’t take a battler serious if he makes someone laugh even when he’s not trying to. This can’t be further from the truth. Emcees are in the business of entertainment whether they’re mainstream or underground, so creating memorable moments is pivotal to marketing and branding.
“Camera Shots! Doot… Doot… Doot… Nigga I’m shooting from all angles!!!” – Mack Mel Vs. Ab-Ease
The above bar may not seem like a money-ball bar, and you’re probably right. It was the performance of the bar that made it 10 times more potent than it should have been. Watching Mel literally act out the shooting from all angles by taking imaginary gun shots that took him off cam for the last doot was classic. I would argue that had he had such a memorable moment on the SMACK stage he would be highly talked about about and booked for many events. What Mack Mel is doing can be considered the “right”approach to gain attention and notoriety throughout the culture. Fans and critics alike are tired of the “antics” approach that we’ve so often seen from the likes of Daylyt. We don’t want the memorable moments to come from the shock value of the act. Whereas I can re-watch Mack Mel’s battles because of great performance, I don’t want to see a Daylyt antic battle more than once. I enjoy re-watching a battle that was great because of the exemplary performance that lies therein but abhor even the thought of sitting through an emcee literally taking a crap on stage.
I think we will see more of the Mack Mel. He has solid progression which is a good indication that his bars are catching up to his performance. With even better penmanship Mack Mel will be a force to be reckoned with for any opposing emcee. He has great performance and tag line that sticks in your head, “STIR THAT SHIT!” often preceded by “Don’t talk about expensive shit if you ain’t never wore that shit, and food ain’t food if you don’t stir that shit!” What does it mean? I have no I idea, but like Will Ferrell said in Blades of Glory, “It’s provocative, gets the people going!”