Finding The GOAT Group: Slum Village vs. Jedi Mind Tricks. Who Is Better?
“Finding the GOAT Group,” the fourth installment of Ambrosia For Heads’s annual battle series features Hip-Hop’s greatest collectives vying for the #1 spot. Sixty-two groups have been pre-selected by a panel of experts, and one slot will be reserved for a wild-card entry, including the possibility for write-in candidates, to ensure no deserving band of MCs and DJs is neglected. The 2018 contest consists of seven rounds, NCAA basketball-tournament style, leading to a Top 32, then the Sweet 16 and so on, until one winner is determined. For each battle, two groups are pitted against one another with a ballot to decide which one advances to the next round. Though there will be an enormous amount of debate in comments, on social media, in barbershops and text messages, which we encourage, only votes cast in the official ballot (below) count.
The next battle is between two groups who, despite multiple roster changes, have remained consistent champions of the underground. The hardcore sounds of Philly’s Jedi Mind Tricks go up against the soulful vibes of Motown’s Slum Village. Both groups are 25-year-vets with underground roots and cult followings. Only one crew goes to Round 2. Vote below to decide which one.
While S.V. began as a trio between Dilla, T3 and Baatin for celebrated albums such as Fan-Tas-Tic, Vol. 1 and Fantastic, Vol. 2, the squad became a revolving door throughout the 2000s and 2010s due to solo pursuits, turmoil, and tragedy. Despite massive setbacks and losses, the Vill’ has made consistently dope music in all of its iterations. Top 40 releases followed, as well as early Kanye West and Dwele features, and increased recognition for fiery lyrics (thanks in large part to Elzhi) as much as thumping beats and clever concepts. In the last 15 years, S.V. stuck to the script of delivering raw, relatable, unfiltered Hip-Hop and showcasing a side of Detroit that did not need to be hardcore to thrive. Today, with co-founder T3 and producer Young RJ carrying the torch, Slum Village brandishes its rich legacy of making fantastic music.
Jedi Mind Tricks
Jedi Mind Tricks has gone for the jugular with East Coast hardcore Hip-Hop for 25 years. The group has endured several personnel shifts, but J.M.T., at its core, is Vinnie Paz (fka Ikon the Verbal Hologram) on the mic and Stoupe The Enemy Of Mankind on production. Between the dramatic orchestral sounds and film scores often sampled in Stoupe’s beats, and Vinnie’s menacingly gruff and erudite vocals, J.M.T. is loyal to its foundation. Lyrically and sonically, the crew (sometimes including Jus Allah and DJ Kwestion) evolved. Vinnie’s songwriting now touches on metaphysics, conspiracies, mental illness, and “everything from war, to how the ocean is vast.“ The group also spawned the Army Of The Pharaohs super-crew, which has become its own driving force in the underground. With their ninth album dropping in June, the Pazmanian Devil and Stoupe continue to feed the masses’ minds, aggression, and search for sinister beats.
So who is the better Hip-Hop group? Make sure you vote above.