The coronavirus has really turned the world upside down. Netflix shareholders have probably taken the rest of the yeaR off. House party is relevant, I haven’t turned my PS4 off in 3 days.
But the one exciting thing going on is that the producer community has turned on itself, with clashes going off left right and centre.
Starting off in America, production icons Swizz Beatz and Timbaland poked their heads out from their quarantines and set it on each other, declaring that the superproducer title has to be taken not given.
And while it was hilarious to see these two grown men awkwardly shout at their phones about who had the better song, it sparked a fire that all music fans have had their eyes on.
Since then, we’ve seen them organize several battles – Boi1da battled Hit-Boy, and Mannie Fresh got sacrificed in the name of entertainment (Mannie my guy… I hate it had to be him).
This week however, Skepta surprisingly set it off in the UK. Calling out Jammer first in an old school grime classics battle, he reminded everybody about his surprisingly hard production catalogue, and then WENT after Jae5'S HEADTOP the VERY next day.
It’s all been great to watch, and as we all know UK producers are the hardest – who do we want to see next?
Ghosty v 808Melo: A Heavyweight Matchup
First up is one for the drill fans – and for those who know, this one makes too much sense. Both are heavyweights, with their own signature styles, variety, and the placements to back up their names.
Melo may be known for the Meet The Woo series with Pop Smoke, which a lot of drill producers won’t be able to match, but his catalogue goes even deeper than that too. How would any producer chat to Know Better, or even Stormzy’s remix of the beat, Disappointed?
That doesn’t mean you can count out Ghosty out though. He’s produced for 22gz, has US placements coming and has produced for the best of the best; everyone from Digga D to Nito NB.
Dot Rotten v Steel Banglez: This one's a little personal.
So we’ve had a couple drill soundclashes, a couple grime soundclashes, and some rap and trap ones. But this one is one that’ll have people talking. This isn’t a lockdown clash though – Dot Rotten called out Steel Banglez for this clash months ago, declaring that the guy can’t chat to him and that he’s ripped off his whole sound.
He even went as far to release a diss track on him (although Dot did release a lot of diss tracks in the midst of that beef.) Both have hits, both have long careers, but Dot has the legend status and Banglez has the mainstream look. But if we can keep it music, this would definitely be entertaining.
Rapid v Sir Spyro: 140 beats per minute.
Next up we have a grime clash for the history books. Both have been making bangers for ages, but Rapid has been out making bangers from day one. Some of the most classic grime beats have come out of that man’s computer, so while Spyro may be the grime producer in demand right now (or for the past 5 years) he might not have a song that can match Pied Piper, a beat that’s been touched by everyone from Kano 20 years ago, to Stormzy or AJ Tracey as little as 5 or 6 years ago.
Gotcha v MKThePlug: AJ v Fury (Drill Edition)
This one might be very tough. A true vet, MKThePlug has classics to his name. He and M1 are probably two of the most well-known producers; but Gotcha has undeniably produced some of the most well known drill songs. He’s the architect behind Russ’ classic mainstream run, Gun Lean, Keisha and Beck and Mr Sheen. He’s also worldwide with it, producing the scene setting banger ‘The Message’ for ONEFOUR.
But don’t underestimate MK – if you don’t know about him, it’s probably because half his biggest songs got taken down from Youtube at one point.
Both producers would know they have a serious clash ahead of them, and you never know when a banger would come that would turn the whole thing around.
Quietpvck v Carns Hill: Ali v Frazier (Drill Edition)
If you think of a classic drill song, or if you think of that classic UK drill sound that really got the sound moving as it started, chances are you’re thinking of a song by one of these two. Chances are, one of them made the first UK drill song you ever heard. Both have their own unique, but equally loud, authentic and grimy sound that no one has managed to capture since.
Carns doesn’t just have LD, he has Scribz. Quietpvck doesn’t just have Skengdo, he has Y.Rendo. As soon as you hear ‘SRB, Separation Confirmed’, you’re hearing from a producer who’s made beats for the likes of Youngs Teflon, 67, Zone 2, and most recently, a cold mixtape with S Loud.
Carns has a list of hits longer than my arm but Quietpvck is a different kind of beast. This one will definitely show people how good drill beats really are.
Show N Prove v IllBlu: A UK rap madness
Both these two have some impressive hits behind them, and have been responsible for making some of the cleanest, well produced hits in UK rap. IllBlu might be in the clubs heavy (and so they could be a pretty good match up for Steel Banglez too) but Show N Prove has some of those household name songs, and some classics from over the past 10 – 15 years that would be hard to beat. He’s an elite producer, but taking him out of his usual space against one of the most talented in the UK mainstream?
We want to see what both these two up their sleeves.
Nyge v Remedee: The Future Hitmakers
These two are the newest hitmakers we have right now, and at this point both have reached a point where if you see Remedee on the credits, or if you hear ‘Sounds Like Nyge’, you know you’re hearing a banger.
From a production perspective, Remedee is insanely talented – his beats are either packed with care and attention to detail or cut down to the minimal essentials while still sounding hard.
Nyge is no slouch either, always making something pushing the boundaries of what we hear in UK rap right now.
We don’t want this to be a ‘who has the best D Block song’ competition, cause both of these two have hits, Nyge might Lock Arff the live, Remedee might take home the Trophy, but this one would probably be one of the best clashes if it actually happened.
Splurt Diablo v Filthy Gears: Grime Could Never Be Dead
Both these producers have kept grime going with some forward-thinking bangers in the last couple years, giving a lot of MCs their best beats in a scene that desperately needs some stronger projects.
The mystery producer Splurt Diablo was revealed to be nothing but the production name for Merky Ace a few years back, and since that Scooby Doo mask off moment Merky’s career hasn’t been the same.
He’s shown us that when it comes to a grime set, any tune he touches can get a wheel, on or off mic. With his trap influenced, hard hitting beats, there aren’t a lot of producers that can match him.
Except for one of his actual go to producers, Filthy Gears. Filthy knows his way around a DAW, and a producer that can play some of his competitors best songs against him would make for an interesting clash for sure.
Mike Skinner v Donae’o: Might be tempted to pour a drink for this one.
This would probably be the most interesting clash here. Mike Skinner, the rapper, producer, DJ and rapper who had his hip-hop meets UK garage run as The Streets, versus Donae’o, rapper, producer and singer who was a front runner in the funky house movement.
It’s a tough clash. Both of them have careers going back 20 years, and have songs touching garage, grime, and rap. Mike retired and took a long hiatus but his return has been lowkey but impressive, working with artists like Dimzy, Chip and Grim Sickers, but Donae’o has never rested. People forget he’s a cold producer just like Mike, making bangers for his own projects his whole career.
Both artists might be challenged but this one would be the most fun to watch.
[The Wildcard] Wiley v Dizzee: Godfather vs Boy In Da Corner
If there is a clash mentioned Wiley and Dizzee is always the first thing I think of. This one, like Steel Banglez v Dot Rotten may be a little personal, as these artists haven’t been in the same room for over a decade. But no one’s asking them to be in the same room – I’d just love to see it settled, once and for all.
Who really is the originator of this whole thing?
Both of these two legends have something to prove; and with both of them recently getting back behind the boards, it would definitely be interesting to see. Who had the best songs back in the day? Who’s harder as a producer now? Man if Dizzee plays the I Luv U (Remix) I’ll throw my phone so hard I’ll need to download IG on my dad’s one.
SO THESE ARE THE BEST MATCHUPS I CAN THINK OF. AND WHILE IT'S FUN TO SPECULATE, IT WOULD BE FUN TO SEE SOME OF THESE ACTUALLY GO OFF. YOU CAN VOTE IN OUR POLL FOR WHO YOU THINK WOULD WIN.