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Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Killer Mike: 'Most conscious music is pussy'

"You don't have to grow dreadlocks or grow flowers or disarm yourself ... you don't have to do any of that pussy shit. All you gotta do is be man enough to stand up and say this shit ain't right and rap it."

Killer Mike has always been known for speaking that raw, unfiltered. And in the midst of the best year of his career, he's remaining steadfast on that. It's part of the reason why he's CL's Best Overall Artist of 2012. Well, that and the fact that he and producer El-P put together what will likely be looked at as one of the best album's of the decade eight years from now. Forgive us if we're a little premature on that one.

But back to Mike's latest outspoken soundbite. The Well Versed and 2 Dope Boys recently went half on an interview with Mike in which he talked about the reason why conscious music gets such a bad rap, among other things. Basically, a lot of it is wack, he says without mincing words — which mirrors the sentiment he recently tweeted.

It speaks to a larger point about one-dimensionality, in both artists and fans, that has unfortunately become the rule in rap — thanks in large part to an industry that finds it easier to market and promote caricatures (whether coon-like or conscious) over well-rounded acts. It's part of the same reason why Killer Mike didn't back down from the idea of collaborating with New York-bred El-P just because they're from different regions, he says in the interview.

So what's Killer Mike's idea of the right kind of conscious rap — an amalgam of Ice Cube's street knowledge, Chuck D's political outrage, and Scarface's straight gangstaism: "My conscious music is that I'm standing on a street corner, I'm conscious that this is bullshit and I'm gonna talk about it," says Mike.

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