Top Five Battle Rappers Today

Battle rap is a gladiator sport. I started battling back in middle school, when I gained an affinity for rapping. The mind has to be sharp when battling, especially on the street. There are no time limits usually, just a long battle between two hungry spitters who want the recognition of beating the other. Coming from that mentality and mindset, battle rap has now grown into a business. A platform to provide some of the best battlers with a solid living just off the power of their skills and performance. 

With URL (Ultimate Rap League) being the leading voice in battle rap, we've seen legends be born, and some legends go down in flames. That's the nature of the business. Today, we have legendary names, top tier battlers, and newer cats who are making a splash in the game. Here's my look at the top 5 battle rappers today, not all time. Excluded from this list, is the man who I consider the all time greatest, Loaded Lux. Lux is the most legendary name in the game today, and he is by far, the greatest. However, with no further adieu, let's get to the top 5 battlers today.

5. T-Top
People have said that T-Top is one-dimensional with his style, as he speaks from a real perspective about his life in the streets and the drug game, but I like his angles. He brings a feel of authenticity to his bars, which honestly lacks with a bunch of these guys today. Top's strength is his aggression, his ability to make you relate and every now and then, he throws in a bar so sick, that you have to run it back a few times in order to fully grasp the nature of it. His performance style works in just about any arena, which is an attribute that will benefit in upcoming big battles. The highlight of his battle career had to be his UFF victory via 106 and Park on BET, along with headlining the Rookies vs Vets URL event against the legendary Charlie Clips(who you'll see later on this list). If you're looking for some of T-Top's best work, check his RBC battle against R Hood (below), his UFF battles against The Saga and Sno, as well as the battle with Clips when it drops.

4. Tsu Surf
Surf was never one of my favorites. He had an ability to reach in his bars, and while I found it hilarious, it seemed to be a hindrance. However, in recent battles, Surf has put together much better rounds with great accuracy and precision. Surf is one of those top tier battlers and after his most recent victory over Hitman Holla, he solidified his spot on my list. He's had classic battles before against Conceited, X-Factor, and even got a victory over one of the biggest names ever in battle rap, Hollow Da Don. His resume is quite stacked, and his strongest attribute is his gun bars along with aggression. My only gripe on Surf is that he ends his rounds too simple. With all the aggression in his bars, I'd like to see Surf end his rounds off a little stronger. However, if you're looking for Surf battles to enjoy, I say check his Conceited (below), X-Factor, Hitman Holla, and even his battle with Clips, which he lost, but still put in a great performance.

3. Xcel
A lot of people are sleep on Xcel. A lot of people. His bars go over heads quite often. His style is less performance orientated, but his lyrics are top tier. He takes a ton of battles each year and is able to maintain that top tier level of lyricism in each battle. His most famous appearances have come through No Mercy via the Trap House battle league, but he's appeared on UFF via URL and in the Proving Grounds. Many, including myself, were disappointed that there was a dispute with Xcel and URL, causing him to not be on the Rookies vs Vets card. Regardless, Xcel is an amazing battler and with the right performance, he could easily become a top tier battler in any of the bigger leagues like URL or KOTD (King of The Dot). Some of his best battles are against Daylyt, Aura, Stash and his controversial one on UFF against Anubis (below) which the consensus said he won, but the judges said he didn't. Check out Xcel and you'll see why he made this list.

2. Daylyt
I know what you're thinking. Daylyt is a clown. Too many antics. Too much focus on wasting time than killing with bars. All of that is correct. Daylyt's downfall is his unnecessary need for attention outside of his talents. I struggled with putting him on this list because of this fact, but after watching his battles back, it became apparent that there was no way to leave him off. Skill wise? Day is probably the best on this entire list, with Xcel right behind him. His schemes, his punches, his lyricism are out of this world. The kicker here about Day is that he hasn't battled on the main URL stage officially. So him being included on this list without that is a big deal in itself. If Daylyt focused on his bars and upped his performance without distracting antics, he might be the greatest ever when it's said and done. However, this is Day we're talking about, and that's never going to happen. In the meanwhile, just enjoy his battles against Chilla Jones, Aye Verb, Quest McCody, Madchild (Day bodied him), Clips, etc., Day has a large resume of battles and a long list of great ones, further enforcing why he's on this list.

1. Charlie Clips
Clips is probably the 2nd greatest of all time behind Lux, or some would say Clips is the greatest ever period. I have Clips as my 2nd greatest under Lux, but there's no doubt that he's knocking on the door of the GOAT. With rumors of a Lux vs Clips battle at URL's Summer Madness 5, there's a score to be settled there I'm sure. However, Clips has managed to dominate the scene the last few years, racking up plenty of big wins in his career. After destroying Tay Roc (in 2008), Aye Verb and X-Factor, Clips took his place as one of the top tier battlers. With great set ups, schemes, bars, name flips,and humor along with performance, Clips is the total package as a battler. He possesses the ability to move any crowd, whether here in the U.S. or overseas against their native battlers, proving Clips' greatness. Clips has taken a few losses, one to B-Magic and one to Charron, but outside of those two, his record is virtually flawless in battles. He's battled everyone else on my top 5 list with the exception of Xcel and beat them all (reportedly he beat T-Top 2-1). Check his battles with Top, Surf, Hitman Holla, Daylyt, T-Rex (a body), his rematch with Tay Roc (Clips won that), and more to see exactly why Clips is number one today.

Peace and blessings,


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