Before Nas and Jay-Z, there were two other lyrical titans pitted against each other when rap fans tried to determine rap supremacy. Purists have long argued who was the better MC: the God Rakim or the lyrical marvel Big Daddy Kane. Well, Pusha T has come up with an answer, and even went as far as using his latest mixtape title to declare the victor.
“Wrath of Caine is basically of course the obvious play on the whole street life,” the coke-rap trailblazer told MTV News on Tuesday (January 29), just one day after he dropped his mixtape. “But while I was recording it and getting it right I came to the realization that Big Daddy Kane was better than Rakim.”
Pusha is no doubt a lover of lyrics. He has long been praised for his witty wordplay and thoughtful rhyme patterns, and Wrath of Caine continues in that tradition. On the slow and brooding “Doesn’t Matter,” he sets himself apart from inept spitters with deep lines. “There’s a meaning to the kissing of the ring, the Gods don’t mingle with the mortals/ Peasants ain’t sittin’ with the kings/ Goliath ain’t worried about your sling/ And Cassius ain’t bothered by your swings,” he spits arrogantly.
The G.O.O.D. Music MC’s lyrical linage could directly be traced back to the early pioneering efforts of the two ’80s greats. Fans used to dream of seeing Ra and Kane go back and forth and BDK even admitted to MTV News that it was on his personal list of dream battles. Pusha, being the fan he is, has been racking his brain about it for years. “This is like a fight that I’ve been having forever,” he said. “It’s an argument; I used to fight for Rakim crazy.”
Push went ahead and re-examined BDK’s 1989 single “Wrath of Kane” and finally came to his conclusion — the Brooklyn MC weaves words together like no MC before him. “The man at hand to rule and school and teach/ And reach the blind to find their way from A to Z,” Kane spit more than 20 years ago, effectively changing the way all rappers who came after him would structure their rhymes.
“The ‘Wrath of Kane’ is basically the record,” Push confirmed. “I gave it up now. Kane is the one.”
What is your favorite song from Pusha T’s Wrath of Caine mixtape? Let us know in the comments!