The Demigodz are a crew of underground rappers led by Connecticut’s Apathy. They’ve actually been around since the early 90s, but some hip-hop heads have probably only first heard of these guys when Mike Shinoda of Linkin Park enlisted their talents for his Fort Minor project in 2005. Styles of Beyond were featured a lot on the proper Fort Minor album, The Rising Tied, while Fort Minor’s We Major mixtape included S.O.B. again plus Apathy and Celph Titled. Predictably, their features made those releases worth listening to, because who wants to hear Mike Shinoda rap by himself for a full-length cd???
Older hip-hop heads might remember the Demigodz from way back in ’97, when Apathy featured on Jedi Mind Tricks’ Psycho-Social LP. After that they became affiliated with JMT’s Army of the Pharoahs crew.
Fun fact: Apathy, who has the most “Demigodz seniority” of all the current members, wasn’t even an original member. The fact that crew is still active with no founding members is pretty unprecedented in hip-hop. One explanation for the Demigodz longevity is their loose organization. The word crew describes them much better than group. Not everyone appears on every group song, and everyone has a main career outside of the Demigodz. And they’ve dealt with people leaving (which happened A LOT) by enlisting many new members. Today, the current lineup is Apathy, Celph Titled, Ryu (of Styles of Beyond), Esoteric, Blacastan and Motive. An excellent, much more detailed history of the group can be found at sputnikmusic.com.
Killmatic is the Demigodz most recent release, coming just last week. Unlike many albums from big groups, it has a decent mix of all the members. In fact, everyone appears on at least 6 of the 16 songs, but the most popular members, Apathy, Celph, and Ryu, do have many more verses than the others. Founding member, Open Mic, appears on one song, while other features include Termanology, Eternia (another past member), and R.A. The Rugged Man.
I’m liking the album so far but I plan on digging into it much more over the coming weekend. I’m hoping that the mix of rappers prevents it from getting monotonous after 16 tracks. Expect a full review early next week. In the meantime, I got some links for ya to click!
Killmatic can be previewed and bought digitally for $9 at the crew’s bandcamp
Physical copies can be ordered for $13 at Big Cartel