Do The Source Magazine’s 5 Mics Still Matter?

12.06.11 6 years ago 44 Comments

Asking anyone – fans, critics or anyone with an opinion – to rate a rap album can be tiresome at best since music is completely subjective. Couple that with the notion that rap music is still relatively young and the canon still undefined to a degree and headaches abound. For years, the only acceptable critique came from The Source, before the ‘zine went through a tumultuous stage we’re all familiar with. As the current staff – led by Combat Jack and Kaz – seeks to restore the mag’s credibility, The Friday Hip Hop Report’s interview seen below asks if the once coveted “5 Mics” rating still relevant to rap?

The video is rather lengthy (12 minutes) and the editing on it could induce seizures in epileptics but it’s worth watching and listening to. And granted, asking members of a magazine’s staff if their ratings system is relevant is probably not going to provide the most unbiased answer. Still Jack and Kaz put forth a good argument and share insights on years-old stigmas attached to the mag, new direction and how their review process works, which bears a lot of similarities between what we do on our side in some of the world’s greatest, most heated series of internal emails.

There are so many strands to the conversation that I don’t want to expand with my thoughts or dominate the discussion. Instead, I want to encourage everyone to watch and then discuss in the comments section.

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