Kendrick Lamar Blatantly Dissed Drake On Dr. Dre’s ‘Compton’

Carl Williott | August 7, 2015 8:56 am
Why Are This Year's Music Beefs So Wack?
Music beefs used to Mean Something.

Hip-hop currently feels like pro wrestling, with tiny little feuds and slights being magnified into gargantuan battles and so many conflicts and story lines intersecting that it can be tough to keep it all straight. The latest drama comes from old drama, as Kendrick Lamar reignites his feud with former friend Drake with a couple not-quite-subliminal disses on Dr. Dre‘s just-released Compton.

On “Darkside/Gone,” Lamar raps, “But still I got enemies giving me energy I wanna fight now/ Subliminally sendin me all of this hate,” a pretty clear reference to Drake’s “Energy,” especially considering “subliminal” is one of the adjectives you’re most likely to see in a sentence with “Drake.” But that’s minor shade compared to Lamar’s digs on “Deep Water”: “Motherfucker know I started from the bottom… They liable to bury him, they nominated six to carry him/ They worrying him to death, but he’s no vegetarian/ The beef is on his breath, inheriting the drama better than/ A great white, nigga, this is life in my aquarium.”

Lamar originally came for Drake in 2013, beginning by calling him out (among other rappers) by name on his infamous “Control” verse. That was followed by subtle jabs during Lamar’s BET Awards cypher, and then another light diss on Jay Rock‘s “Pay For It” in October 2014. Drake never offered a full-throttled response the way he has with Meek Mill, but he did offer up some subliminals on “6PM In New York” and “The Language.” Once Lamar moved onto the largely above-the-fray To Pimp A Butterfly, it seemed the beef had blown over (although “King Kunta” has a line that in retrospect may have been addressing the Drake ghostwriting controversy). But maybe now that TPAB is out of his system Kendrick is ready to drop some blatant bombs on his rivals.

It’ll be interesting to see if Drake decides to escalate this and get himself in the middle of a two-front war. It’s one thing for him to go at Meek Mill head-on. It’s quite another for him to step into the ring with Kendrick. His reluctance to directly address past disses from the likes of Kendrick, Jay Z and Pusha T, but then his eagerness to punch down with Meek, has irked a certain faction of rap fans on Twitter. But it’s probably not enough pressure to goad him into an all-out feud with one of rap’s best MCs.

[via Consequence of Sound]