Part one looked at the best duos in hip-hop from the 80s and 90s. Part two will continue with the best duos from the 2000s and today. Let's jump right into it.
Bad Meets Evil
This duo is comprised of Eminem and Royde da 5'9". Royce is the bad and Slim Shady himself is the evil. The pair takes its name from the track that brought them together which is on Eminem's major label debut The Slim Shady LP. The duo didn't put out a full EP for themselves until 2011 following a brief breakup period.
Individually each is an icon in their own right. The two had collaborated on a variety of singles since 2000. Originally Watch The Throne was supposed to be a five-song EP but evolved over time into a full length album. The combination of the two certainly produced magic but the relationship between the two has just seemed off over the past couple years so it seems like it will remain a one off type of thing, but certainly created enough of a moment to warrant listing here.
No Comply is comprised of brothers Fynn and Ethan Blackwood. Their music is bold with a playful and melodic take on the rapidly changing and evolving genre that is hip-hop. They take the expression of hip-hop and reinterpret it to give the people something to dance to and feel connected with. They have just released a new song called "Love Letter" and hopefully with have a full length project out late this year.
Formed by brothers Gene "No Malice" Thornton and Terrence "Pusha T" Thornton, this duo certainly benefited from their association with the production team The Neptunes. They are considered pioneers of the coke rap subgenre. There wasn't a school lunch table around in the early 2000s that didn't feel the impact of their hit "Gridin."
The name tells you all you need to know about this duo. UGK stands for Underground Kingz. Made up of Bun B and Pimp C ask anyone from the state of Texas about them and they were surely a big deal well before southern hip-hop reached the mainstream. Unfortunately we'll never know how big they could've gotten as their self-titled #1 album followed shortly by the death of Pimp C in 2007.
Church & AP
This pair of buds met on their first day of high school in 2013. They discovered a shared appreciation for Chance The Rapper. Their 2018 single "Ready or Not" was a huge hit and garnered the duo three nominations at the 2019 New Zealand Music Awards. Recently they dropped a stunning visual project to go along with their latest EP At Thy Feet.
Ying Yang Twins
Outside of Lil Jon you'll probably find no bigger artist in the "crunk rap" era of the early/mid 2000s. The Ying Tang Twins comprised of Kaine and D-Roc, who aren't actually related, hit the industry hard helping to make southern hip-hop commercially successful in the 2000s. Let someone who was around that time say "to the window" and we're pretty confident you'll hear someone else respond "to the wall!"
Rae Sremmurd which spells Drummers Ear backwards is made of two brothers Slim Jxmmi and Swae Lee. They certainly captured a youth market in the mid 2010s as they sought to bring fun back to music.
This southern duo is made of Cash Money Records co-founder Birdman and producer Mannie Fresh. They were a big part of the movement in the late 90s and early 2000s that saw the sound of southern hip-hop take over the mainstream.
Young Miami and JT hold it down for the ladies as the duo City Girls. The group name comes from the pair being from Opa-locka and Liberty City, which are described by Complex as "two of the roughest neighbourhoods in Miami."
Back when the concept of viral hits was still new this duo of Earl "Ben J" Benjamin and Dominic "Legacy" Thomas burst onto the scene. The two met as freshmen in high school, starting off as rivals but became good friends through a common interest in music. With their music they brought a local Chicago dance style called jerkin' to mainstream attention.
Based in Hamilton, NZ this duo formed in 2000 was comprised of Chris Macro and Tyna Keelan. They provided a style that was more international compared to the likes of Che Fu and King Kapisi who were leading the NZ hip-hop scene at the time with a South Pacific influenced style.
Stream the best from the duos we mentioned in both parts on our Hip-Hop duos playlist.