For MCs looking to demonstrate their extemporaneous flow skills, there are few platforms as significant as Sway’s “5 Fingers of Death.” Much like the clout earned in the “Unsigned Hype” column in the Source a generation ago, this freestyle challenge is, for many Heads, a way to check for who to look out for. Featuring both up-and-coming MCs and longtime legends, it’s a proving ground for those looking to gain new fans and those hoping to hold on to the crown, but as Vic Mensa recently proved, sometimes it can be both, simultaneously.
Mistah F.A.B. Slam Dunks His 5 Fingers Of Death Freestyle Like A Warrior (Video)
The Chicago, Illinois rapper isn’t exactly wet behind the ears, but with his debut full length album still pending, his visit with Sway this week may very well be the first time many have heard him spit. Fresh off the release of a stunningly evolved E.P., There’s Alot Going On, Mensa is establishing for himself a reputation of being a serious, issue-minded MC. Right out the gate, Mensa eviscerates Scarface’s “In Cold Blood” with lamentations about law enforcement, saying “I don’t wanna talk about no beef, I don’t like pork, and I don’t like police.” By the time he gets to Aaliyah’s “Age Ain’t Nothing But A Number,” he has lit up the mic about presidential politics, the shooting of Trayvon Martin, Lil Wayne’s recent health scares, Islam, and much more.
Starting next month, Vic Mensa will kick off an international tour.