Throughout its decades-long history, battle rap has undergone some pretty serious changes. From rapping over a beat spun by a DJ, to freestyling bars off the top of the head, to writing and meticulously rehearsing 15 minutes worth of content and performing it for a massive online audience, the art form has evolved.
The next step in that chain of evolution? Hot. Air. Balloons.
Los Angeles-based entertainment channel Ruin Your Day, started by longtime battle rap cameraman/editor/organizer Kyle “Avocado” Gray, put all-around battle legend The Saurus up against Laugh ‘N Stalk hundreds of feet above ground in a never-before-seen format in the culture.
Both competitors draw ample material from the strange circumstances, with Laugh N’ Stalk telling The Saurus that he’ll end up blaming his loss on “cloud bias” (a play on “crowd bias.”) Saurus hits back with jokes about Laugh N’ Stalk’s lesser known reputation, saying, “We’re in a four-person basket because he can’t pack an audience.”
Watch the full battle below.
While the location of a hot air balloon might sound like a bit of a head-scratcher, there is actually a logic to it as Ruin Your Day boss Avocado explains in behind-the-scenes footage.
“The whole idea for the hot air balloon battle came up when me and Laugh N’ Stalk were at Battle Of The Zae… We brought up the joke of the hot air balloon, how Madd Illz [former owner of GrindTime battle league] thought it would be funny to do — not even funny, he thought it would be cool to do a hot air balloon battle.”
“Everybody was like, ‘Why would you think that would be cool? That’s ridiculous.’ And I was talking to Laugh N’ Stalk and I was like, ‘Why don’t we just do it? Wouldn’t it be funny if we just did it?’ and he was totally on board.”
As it turns out, there was no issue getting The Saurus to join in on the project: “I texted Pete and I was like, ‘Yo, would you be down to battle Laugh N’ Stalk in a hot air balloon?’ and he just text me back ‘Yeah.'”