Los impresses with a Toca Tuesday freestyle

The Baltimore rapper skips the pre-written raps

January 25, 2012|By Wesley Case, The Baltimore Sun

"Off the dome, man! We don't need phones. We don't need notepads," exclaims Los last week after ripping his Toca Tuesday freestyle live on Sirius XM's Shade 45. (Watch it in the above clip.)

He had reason to be excited — the Baltimore rapper, who has been gaining traction nationally, could turn heads with performances like this. And yes, we can use the word "freestyle"* because Los is clearly going off the top of his head with these rhymes. Sure, some bars might be stored away, waiting for the right moment, but it's a true freestyle nonetheless, and it's another piece of evidence that Los might be the Great Baltimore Hope to make an impact outside of the 410.

Another interesting moment from the clip: Los shouts out his long-time girlfriend and rising D.C. rapper Lola Monroe ("Shout out to my old lady / Ay, Lola, I see you / I do it and I hold it down"). The former video vixen (then Angel Lola Luv) strictly raps now, apparently well enough to sign to Wiz Khalifa's crew Taylor Gang or Die. Wiz and his latest TGOD signees, Monroe and Oscar winner Juicy J, just released a freestyle video over the classic "Fu-Gee-La" beat. (Watch the video here.) It should be said both that video and Los' freestyle contain explicit language so if curse words offend you, skip it.

Listen to Lola Monroe's "Stay Schemin'" freestyle here. And download Los' very solid mixtape, "The Crown Ain't Safe" here.

What do you think? Is Los legit? Is there another Baltimore rapper better positioned to crossover? Let us know in the replies.

* Quick semi-related tangent: too many rap fans (typically older ones, waiting for the golden era of rap to resurrect itself ... good luck with that) complain that these "freestyles" are misnomers because 95% of MCs rap pre-written bars. Simply put, times change and the term "freestyle" no longer means coming up with lines off the top of your head. We should applaud the rare breed that still does goes "off the dome," such as Los, but my advice is to not get caught up in semantics. You're going to miss some pretty good rapping if you do.

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