Royce Da 5’9″ reveals the “only competitive” rapper today
(Credit: MikaV)


Royce Da 5'9" reveals the "only competitive" rapper today

During a recent appearance on The Joe Budden Show podcast, Detroit emcee Royce Da 5’9″ spoke about the levels of lyricism in hip-hop and unveiled who he believes is the “only competitive” rapper who is active in the genre.

Speaking to his former Slaughterhouse counterpart, when asked about which artists look like they are lyrically ready for war, the emcee (real name Ryan Montgomery) replied, “I haven’t taken a real deep look out into the landscape, but from where I’m sitting it looks like J. Cole the only one being competitive.”

He continued, “He’s the only one who’s rapping with the kind of conviction that says I still value the number one spot as a lyricist. I see a lot of the younger generations not really hanging their hat on just the lyrical part of creativity at all. They’re finding different ways to impact and resonate with people, which is fine.”

Many younger artists today, such as Lil Baby and Lil Uzi Vert, have huge fan bases yet are not as lyrical as previous generations. Opening up about this, Montgomery explained, “That’s when the elder statesmen like myself start learning. I wanna make myself understand, ‘Why is this touching people like that?’ I can’t even understand what they’re saying.”

He added, “It’s definitely moving away from lyricism being the caveat, which I’m cool with ’cause there’s a lot more things I can do without being lyrical-lyrical.” Budden and Montgomery are on the same page, as in a previous episode of his podcast, Budden admitted that out of the three most lyrical artists today (J Cole, Drake and Kendrick Lamar), he believes Cole is on top.

Speaking about the three, Budden stated, “I got Cole as my one. I’m hoping that Kendrick’s next album could try to fix that for me. Drake is doing his Chuck E. Cheese shit. Good for him. That’s it now. Yeah, that’s it.”

Looking ahead to Cole’s upcoming album, he said, “When I heard The Fall Off and with him hinting at maybe retirement, I thought that would be the marriage between concept and title. But after watching some of these vlog clips where he’s just in the restaurant talking to the older lady that doesn’t know who he is. Classic J. Cole. Perfect rollout shit again. This n*gga’s the best at this.”

You can watch the podcast with Royce Da 5’9″ below.