Black Thought & Method Man Go Verse For Verse In A Freestyle For The Ages (Video)

Even though MCs in groups tend to be overshadowed by the collective, there are few lyricists in Hip-Hop more respected than The Roots’ Black Thought and Wu-Tang Clan’s Method Man. While each MC has an album in the works, with Wu-Tang: The Saga Continues seeing its release on October 13 and The Roots whittling down more than 250 tracks to finalize their project tentatively titled End Game, the two artists appeared on Sway In The Morning to promote their thespian skills. Both are prominently featured in HBO’s new series The Deuce, co-created by David Simon (The Wire). The gritty show explores the seedy streets of New York’s Red Light District in the early 1970s.

While Thought and Meth have both established themselves as capable actors, they are still MCs and, as such, it goes without saying that they are expected to freestyle when on Sway In The Morning. Knowing the request would be coming, Meth prepared several bars but did not have time to memorize them, so he unabashedly read from his phone. Though some prefer off the top freestyles over written ones, by the time Johnny Blaze was done spitting his fiery rhymes, it didn’t matter. As soon as Meth was done, Thought got on the mic and absolutely blacked out. To show that he was going off the top, he ended by tossing back to Meth in a rhyme.

Not one to shy away from a challenge, Method Man commenced with verse two. Taking his time to catch J.I.D.’s “Never” beat that was playing, Meth slipped in with his trademark buttery cadence fully in the pocket. Thought seamlessly recommences, as soon as Meth completes his verse. Once again, he goes off the top but kicks similes and metaphors more dense than most could concoct with a pen. Meth closes things out with another stellar verse.

It’s clear Thought could have continued, but he ends things with the familiar chant of “Wu-Tang! Wu-Tang!”