Who Killed It? Ranking Rap’s Greatest Verses – EPMD ‘Head Banger’ Featuring K-Solo, Redman
Welcome to Who Killed It?, our column where we rank the verses on classic posse cuts from worst to first. For our last go-round, we took a look at the DJ Clue hosted posse cut “Fantastic 4″ featuring Cam’ron, Big Pun, N.O.R.E., and Canibus, from his album, The Professional, but this time, we take it back to 1992 and dissect EPMD's 1992 posse-cut, "The Headbanger." Lifted from the duo's fourth studio album, Business Never Personal, "The Headbanger" was co-produced by themselves and features EPMD members Erick Sermon and Parrish Smith matching verbal wits with their proteges and Hit Squad members K-Solo and Redman.
After having left some fans and critics desiring more after the release of their previous album, 1990's Business As Usual, EPMD were intent on upping the ante with Business Never Personal and succeeded, with the album garnering a 4.5/5 mic rating from The Source and reaching Gold certification just months after its release. "The Headbanger," released as the second single from the album, was the polar opposite of "Crossover," which was Business Never Personal's biggest hit, peaking atop the rap charts. "The Headbanger," on the other hand, was tailored strictly for the taste of the streets and featured more hardcore subject matter and a lack of melodies.
While that may have cost the song positioning on the Billboard charts, it won over the fans that had first fell in love with their more edgy fare from previous outings, ultimately being noted as one of the toughest streetwise jams of the year. K-Solo and Redman, both prized recruits of EPMD's Hit Squad clique, also benefited from the success of "The Headbanger," with K-Solo's profile being boosted in the wake of his sophomore album release, and Redman catching added buzz before ahead of the release of his debut album, which would drop just months after Business Never Personal.
But the real question is: who had the best verse? Find out in our latest edition of Who Killed It?