Features: Black Thought
“Super Lyrical” is a commanding display of lyricism from two titans of hip-hop, Big Pun and Black Thought. It’s a fierce back-and-forth battle of words, showcasing their ability to manipulate language and deliver intricate rhymes with unflinching bravado. The song serves as a declaration of their prowess, an affirmation that they are indeed ‘super lyrical’.
The hook, “Lyrically I’m supposed to represent,” is an assertion of their duty as MCs to uphold the artistry of hip-hop. This mandate is interspersed with a catchphrase, “Niggaz’ll tell you that I’m nice with the blah, blah, blah” that mocks the repetition and mundane chatter common in the rap world. It’s a claim that their artistry goes beyond mere talk, and can be seen in their skillful lyricism.
Big Pun starts the first verse with a flurry of rhymes, painting a picture of his ferocious lyrical style. He describes his raps as weapons, claiming they’re like a “murderous attack” backed by actual facts. He uses imaginative and metaphoric language, like “this massacre’s on as if Picasso laced you,” suggesting his rhymes are both brutal and artistically intricate.
Black Thought’s verse also echoes this sentiment, asserting his own commanding presence in the lyrical battlefield, hinting his lyrics are so powerful that they can lift “your chin up like uppercuts”. His bars represent the duality of his writing skill, being both hard-hitting and complex, a testament to the depth of his craft.
They drop references to their contemporaries and their inspirations, such as Biggie Smalls, acknowledging their roles in the shaping of the genre while still maintaining their unique places in it. It’s a nod to their roots while foregrounding their own explosive delivery.
Naming star baseball player Pete Rose and the hit Wu-Tang Clan track “Triumph”, Big Pun connects his experience as a rapper to popular culture, suggesting the level of his game matches these high-flyers. That his lyrics could spin heads as fast as a successful baseball play or a hot hip-hop track.
“Just call me Baby Jesus cuz lady niggaz be praisin’ me,” Big Pun declares, reinforcing his elevated position in the rap game with a hint of humor and playful arrogance. The use of religious allusions amplifies the divine level of his lyrical genius.
Black Thought, not to be outdone, responds with, “My instrumental’s the Renaissance, no resem-ba-lance/ To nothin’ you come across, lyrical holocaust,” again asserting the power and creative force of his lyrics. The idea is that this isn’t just rap, it’s a rebirth of artistry akin to the Renaissance, and it’s so powerful it could bring about destruction like a ‘lyrical holocaust’.
The song concludes with multiple references to the film “Rocky,” with phrases like, “You will lose… I must break you.” These quotes illustrate the competitive spirit of hip-hop, just like the fierce boxing matches in the movie. It’s an insight into the mindset of rappers like Big Pun and Black Thought, who approached the mic as a ring, and every performance was a fight they were determined to win.
So, “Super Lyrical” is more than a song; it’s a testament to the power of language and the artistry that goes into crafting memorable and impactful bars. It’s a display of hip-hop at its prime, a lyrical exhibition of two of the genre’s virtuosos expressing their mastery with flair and finesse. They’re not just ‘nice with the blah, blah, blah,’ they are masters of the art, ‘super lyrical’ indeed.