Every now and then, in our genre of music, arises a star of such eloquence, energy and charisma, that time has to be taken out to do a serious piece on them. That time has come once again, and once again from the Motor City.
Before going any further, let it be known that one of the godfathers and pioneers of hip hop emcees, Chuck D of Public Enemy, introduces this track. Having been a founding voice of the culture and an influence over every major act that has followed, what must it take for such a person to get amped up about a modern day hip hop artist?
Detroit has been a land-mine of talent, especially in recent years with the likes of Slum Village, Big Sean and DeJ Loaf getting national attention. And then there’s the veteran throne holders of Detroit, Royce Da 5’9” and Eminem, collectively known as Bad Meets Evil. Eminem and Royce have transcended their city and are rightfully regarded among the best lyricists in the hip hop world.
In the midst of his current projects with Slaughterhouse, DJ Premier and the soundtrack for the movie Southpaw, Royce Da 5’9” has decided to collaborate with Russell Simmons’ rising star and protege Lazarus.
The mind fuck that Lazarus sends the listener on is nothing short of being plunged into a modern day episode of “The Twilight Zone”. It leaves you fiending to rewind and dissect each and every bar that strikes with an impeccable delivery. This remarkably talented emcee brings the aggressiveness of 2pac, the lyrical genius of Eminem, a cadence like Nas and vocabulary like the Wu-Tang; this guy is like all of our favorite rappers put into one. Lazarus himself drops the line “I’m a hybrid as preposterous as Rakim and the Indominous Rex.”
Back again to the Motor City, you have Royce Da 5’9” the veteran “King of Detroit,” teaming up with this lyrical monster known as Lazarus to bring you this epic track that relates to the everyday common man, yet delivered in a very uncommon way. The track is called “Underdog”. It has everyone from the new age listeners to the pioneers such as Chuck D and Russell Simmons swaying their heads. Hip hop is alive and bangin’ in 2015.