Hey everyone! I thought I’d try something a little different for this week’s top 5 list and focus on a specific musical genre. In this case, that’s rap. And the reason I chose to start with rap is simple: I don’t really care for rap.
That goes way back too; back when my peers in high school were getting into rap, I was busy discovering Helloween and Iron Maiden. Quite different, right? Honestly, the stuff people played at me simply did nothing for me. And I do mean at me; most of my fellow teens didn’t really want to discuss why I didn’t like a specific song.
So, why did I not enjoy the brunt of the material I was hearing? Well, the melodies bored me, I preferred a more sweeping vocal style, and the lyrical content felt very samey, at least in what people were playing. And the thing with that is, I don’t mind samey if the content is something that I’m into. I could listen to a ton of power metal tracks about dragons one after the other for example, but the rap songs people were listening to just didn’t strike a chord for the most part. And the modern scene? It has even less for me, for a number of reasons.
And after all that, it probably sounds like I can’t stand rap as a whole, doesn’t it? Honestly, there were always exceptions to the rule, even back then. I mean, we all knew the theme song to The Fresh Prince Of Bel Air back in the day, for example.
So, since I’ve found a few artists over the years that I do enjoy, I figured I’d give you a Top 5 of my favourites, with a focus on avoiding the obvious hits that most people already know. Let’s get right into it!
My Way by CRUCIFIX
One of my more recent discoveries, CRUCIFIX is a fantastic artist in my opinion. Vocally, he’s really good, switching effortlessly between rap and sung melodies. This is such a beautifully positive song too. I’ve had this one playing a lot lately as a reminder to not spend too long looking back over my shoulder.
If I Only Had A Brain by MC 900 ft. Jesus
This is a song that I first saw on an episode of Beavis and Butthead. Thanks to the delinquent duo, I now can’t help but sing along with the bassline. Putting that aside though, it’s a superbly bouncy piece with a fun music video that I’m almost convinced inspired the ‘post yourself’ challenge from a few years back. The song itself is fairly straightforward, but much like the video, it’s a lot of fun.
Long Nights (World Mix) by MIYAVI feat. Sonita
MIYAVI is a musician that I didn’t really ‘get’ for a long time, but I grew to love him when ‘What’s My Name?’ landed. This one features Sonita, who is an Afghan rapper. She puts in a real powerhouse performance here, and the song features some really powerful lyrics. It’s a wonderful piece of work all round in my opinion.
Hom Sha Bom by Twiztid
Jamie Madrox and Monoxide Child feature a lot of horror themes in their music and videos. Which means it can get dark. I was tempted to pick Down With Us for this list, complete with the bloody video, but I went with Hom Sha Bom because I really like the story it tells. Plus, I scared the life out of myself with it, listening to it while over-tired and walking in the fog.
Let’s Go All The Way by Insane Clown Posse
A reworking of the 1985 Sly Fox hit, this is another piece with a positive message. The Wicked Clowns have gathered quite a following over the years, and to be honest, I can see why. Despite getting a lot of hate in the mainstream, I always loved the Dark Carnival concept, and they have a really cool look to boot. While not technically their best track, this was one of the first I heard by them, and it remains a favourite as a result.
So, those were my top 5 rap songs. But what about yourselves? Do you like the genre? What are your favourites? Let me know in the comments below!