Blood In – Blood Out Review

Two of the biggest names in rap battling faced off in the ‘Blood in – Blood Out’ showdown at the Laundry Bar last Saturday, bringing one of the most highly anticipated international spars in Grind Time history to fruition. 6’4” teen idol 360 towered above the sea of snapbacks and hoodies surrounding him, his grinning Mickey Mouse tattoo clearly visible to the encircled crowd. Opposite him, and coming straight off his only Australian show the night before, California native Okwerdz’s unassuming demeanor betrayed little of the aggressive rhyming ability he is known for.

Both artists brought their A-Game to the Melbourne suburb of Fitzroy, drawing on their opponents’ nationalities, past battles, and accolades to craft hard-hitting rhymes. Minor mistakes in delivery on both sides did little to tamper with the overall effect of the battle, which was unjudged and had close to equal crowd support for both MC’s.

360 drew laughs from the audience with his customary, and traditionally popular mix of insult and wordplay - “the only real plaque you got’s on your fucking teeth, bitch,” pointing out that while Okwerdz received a gold plaque through his collaboration with the hilltop hoods, 360’s own work has now gone triple platinum. Okwerdz on the other hand was able to deliver relevant and quick-witted attacks through referencing the now-infamous cavalcade of recent events in 360’s life – “now only thirteen year old boys like you.”

Despite the two big names being, for many, the draw card of the event, the clashes between some of the most talented names in Aussie/Kiwi hip hop leading up to the key confrontation were at least as satisfying to witness. In particular the Greeley vs. Manners and Dribbles vs. Mike Pipes bouts were showcases of the kind of skill boasted by MC’s in the scene today. While Manners was able to edge over Greeley, and Dribbles’ audience participation tactics saw him take out the previously undefeated Mike Pipes, the tightness of the matches saw all participants leave with their pride intact.

360 followed the battle with an announcement that Kerser and himself would be holding a rematch of their last clash, a battle that has over a million views on YouTube, and that this time it would be judged. Hopefully it will be as entertaining as this one.

Written by  Frances Vinall Exclusively for Ozhiphopshop