Token & Tech N9ne Bully Rappers In A Back & Forth Display Of Lyricism
Nearly six years ago, in 2013, Salem, Massachusetts MC Token released one of his first YouTube videos for a contest curated by GroundZeroOnline’s MK Loves Music. At 14 years old, Token relished the opportunity to display his lyrical skills on the mic. However, it was Token’s entry for producer Kato On The Track’s No Sucka MC’s contest, a video that has now surpassed 4 million views, that catapulted the East Coast rapper’s keen writing ability to Hip-Hop’s full attention.
After a string of captivating videos and performances, which included a triumphant display of lyrical dexterity on Sway In The Morning, 2016 proved to be a year of growth for the young artist. Later that year, Token released his official debut album, Eraser Shavings. Last December, Token released his second project, Between Somewhere, a complete and rounding display of growth both in content and quality. The project’s opening track, “Somewhere In Between” personifies Token’s growth, as the 19 year old deftly winds expertly woven prose coping with the conjunction of up and coming fame, tour life, and his intermediate family.
As Token’s rapping and lyrical bandwidth expands, so does his reach in the Hip-Hop community. Artists like Dreamville’s Bas, IDK, and Strange Music’s Tech N9ne have taken notice, rubbing shoulders against the Massachusetts rapper with bars of their own. While Heads marinate on the 17 track project, Token lifts one of his idols off wax and onto the web with visuals for one of Between Somewhwere’s bonus cuts, “Youtube Rapper.”
Adding to his track record for bar rattling ballistics behind the booth, Token enlists one of Hip-Hop’s all-time wordsmiths, Tech N9ne, for a lengthy, linguistic back and forth. In an attempt to body all rappers in their path and escape the title of an online MC, Token and Tech rip the scene from the seams from the back of a tour bus. Token opens, “Yeah, when I was younger, I didn’t know what to do with myself / Freestyle to freestyle, proving myself / Started focusing on the mission more than spitting / But the feeling that I was missing was the one to kill everybody else/ And I’m not violent, I just need to be protected now / My boy just got himself a little pistol, he might shoot it at you / Who am I after? Anyone I gotta stick or put on my pupu platter / Used to chatter but I get way too much p*ssy to be a YouTube rapper.”
Later, Tech aims his tactical beam at Machine Gun Kelly and his decision to use his verse for Tech’s track “No Reason (The Mosh Pit Song),” as a jumping point to attack and burgeon beef with Slim Shady himself, Eminem. “Why they gotta choose me to try to shoot Mathers? / Guess I’m the truth and I boost to Zeus, who’s gassin’ / But beaucoup flashers on social media say I juke truth backwards / F*** your boots loose with a duke shoot smasher, I’m solid.”
To further fan the flames underneath the rotisserie of Hip-Hop beef, Token takes aim once again. This time, he fires personal shots, delegating focus towards DMV rapper, Logic. Here, Token addresses the difference between the ability to rap fast, and rap with content to boot. “Curb stomp the only way I’m kicking knowledge / I don’t preach, ladies say, “I love you,” when you sort of poppin’ / You take them for their word and then they take you for your wallet (Thank you) / How many syllables can he fit within a second with no content? / Use your own logic, no comment (Ha ha).” Tech N9ne has also ran into difficulties with Logic in the past due to his feature on Tech’s song “Sriracha” with Joyner Lucas, who like Token, is a Massachusetts native. However, in an interview with REAL 92.3 (8:15), Tech addresses the situation rather respectfully, and explains Logic’s reason for giving Tech a lackadaisical freestyle, instead of a full verse.
The onslaught continues throughout the track for the young MC and the verified veteran, as Token and N9ne delineate their hatred for the content-less with page packing penmanship. Tech rips, “Ayy / I don’t know why anybody wanna come and get it from Dante (Dante)/ That thinking is dubious, I am Vesuvius, pop, now you’re Pompeii (Hot) / Calling me coward, I’m coming as crazy, calamitous Kanye (Whoa) / Got a gargantuan gun, I’ma get the grown-up gropin’ grande / Blah blah, taking agua after rap beef/Put they paws on the faja, bah-bah, black sheep / Ni**a, that’s weak, f*cking raw in the car back seat / Where they take rah-rah rap sheets / Ha-ha, caca, cats keep, crack peeps.”
Token wraps up the sentiment, attempting to separate himself completely and simultaneously take down his viral rap image once and for all. “This man’ll, dismantle / Put your head on this mantle / I see BS on your channel / Get outshined by my shadow / I don’t battle, I do not pretend / Don’t even rap like this if I’m not with Tech / Tech, I got your back, a back architect / The way I built this sh*t from the YouTube, kid / I’m done, f***.”
Find this cut on Token’s most recent album, Between Somewhere, featuring Bas, IDK and Tech N9ne.