Finding The GOAT Group: Boogie Down Productions vs. Ultramagnetic MC’s. 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 or those using the official hashtags on social media count.
The latest clash of titans involves two Bronx cliques that know how to battle. These crews worked together and were soldiers of the same late ’80s and early ’90s movement. In this tournament, they compete for survival. Your vote will push only one winner to Round 2.
Boogie Down Productions
During its five-year run, Boogie Down Productions moved like a battalion with acclaimed albums releasing every consecutive year. Lawrence “KRS-One” Parker was at the helm of this brigade, always paying tribute to fallen general, DJ Scott “La Rock” Sterling. Together, they released a lone album, 1987’s Criminal Minded. Following the untimely death of Scott, the group upped their ante with more politically-charged content that played a huge role in the Conscious Rap movement. B.D.P. expanded to include D-Nice, DJ Kenny Parker, and the late Ms. Melodie, and a possé of affiliates. Through to the crew’s grand finale, Sex And Violence, each album encompassed KRS-One’s status as “The Teacher” layered by his philosophical wit, humanist lessons, and cocksure Battle Rap prowess. B.D.P. group has three gold albums in its catalog with intelligent (in many cases, self-produced) samplings of Funk, Rock, Blues, and Reggae mixed with hammering snare drums beats that laid the groundwork for Underground Rap’s definitive ’90s sound.
The Ultramagnetic MC’s created some of the most cosmically energetic Rap. When they formed in 1984, Ultramag’ set forth to push the boundaries of Hip-Hop with their unorthodox rhyme patterns with challenging vocabulary from the group’s main MCs, Kool Keith and Ced Gee. DJ Moe Luv and TR Love enforced the quartet of menacing music-makers. Their most influential single “Ego Trippin” from debut album Critical Beatdown coined a beloved Hip-Hop catchphrase and arranged a sample that has been re-purposed for the next 30 years. 1993’s The Four Horsemen is an early signal to the Underground Hip-Hop movement, with more advances in beats and rhymes. Altogether, Ultra’s commercial performance does not equate to their critical praise or influence. Instead, the BX squad released four albums on four labels, often with extended hiatuses. This collective is still active, with 2007’s Best Kept Secret reunion LP showing that chemistry.
So who is the better Hip-Hop group? Make sure you vote above.