Wu-Tang Clan
Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers)


5.0
classic

Review

by lhammill15 USER (1 Reviews)
August 14th, 2007 | 34 replies


Release Date: 1993 | Tracklist

Review Summary: I had to do this one for myself. A hip-hop classic that should be considered for any all-time best album list, regardless of genre.

I know there are already two reviews for this one, but I had to do this one for myself. The first time I ever heard Wu-Tang, my brother had downloaded a couple tracks (that all happened to be from this album) and was showing them to me. My first reaction was skeptical - I didn't know what to think about it on first listen. The first thing I noticed was the production. It seemed like it was recorded in somebody's basement with awful equipment and a sloppy attitude toward keeping the beats crisp and tight. I kept listening, however, and my mind started to change. The fact that the MCs were as talented as any I've ever heard was a given. What surprised me most was how much the production grew on me. I began to love the raw, gritty sound that RZA, the de facto leader (who also produced all of their material for the first 5 years) of Wu-Tang, brought into hip hop in an era where heavy, funky, clean, hard-hitting West Coast beats (courtesy of Dr. Dre and others) were dominating the scene. The music and lyrics fit so well together, painting a picture of the dark, ominous, gritty Staten Island streets that most of the Clan (others were from Brooklyn, etc) grew up on. Except they don't call it Staten Island. It's Shaolin. This is just one small example of the many instances of "Wu-Tang Slang" that you will become immersed in upon listening to this album. The kung-fu samples, Killa B references, aliases, acronyms ("We Usually Take All Niggaz Garments" --Raekwon the Chef), and shouts and cries of "Suuuueee", among many others, only add to the insane depth of the 36 Chambers.

On to the track listing:

1. Bring da Ruckus - One of the best album openers I've ever heard. Begins with an eerie kung-fu sample from the movie Shaolin and Wu-Tang and goes right into the chorus: RZA daring all comers to "bring the muthafu*kin ruckus." One of RZA's best beats ever, with different elements coming in and out, creating a cinematic/symphony-like experience. Ghostface Killah, Raekwon the Chef, Inspectah Deck, and GZA/Genius all turn in great verses. 5/5

2. Shame on a Nigga - A more upbeat track, utilizing horns and a nice bassline, along with the debut of Ol' Dirty Bastard's "fatherless" style, provide a nice contrast to the previous song. Method Man appears next for the first time on the album, and it is at this point that you are beginning to think that this album is a collection of all-star MCs rather than a single group. Raekwon returns during a piano breakdown, with Ol' Dirty Bastard closing the song out. 4.5/5

3. Clan in da Front - Begins with RZA yelling/shouting out over a sharp bassline, backed by one of the album's more memorable chants: "Wu-Tang Killa B's / We on the swarm!" The song then transforms - a crazy piano loop over drums begins. I'll note here that most of the piano loops on this album (especially here) sound like that image of the madman in the dungeon playing all over the piano, only it sounds good. This is GZA's solo song, and he shows why he is considered the best lyricist in the Clan, ending the second verse with a baseball-themed extended metaphor:


How ya sound B? You're better off a quitter
I'm on the mound G, and it's a no-hitter
And my DJ the catcher, he's my man
Anyway he's the one who devised the plan
He throws the signs I hook up the beats with clout
I throw the rhymes to the mic and I strike em out
So it really doesn't matter on how you intrigue
You can't FU*K with those in the major leagues


4.5/5

4. 7th Chamber - IMO one of the best hip-hop songs ever, and certainly the best "pass the mic" song ever. Begins with a rather humorous skit about somebody being shot, then continues into another one of RZA's fantastic beats - he got the sound on this one from de-tuning a piano. The seven main Wu-Tang MCs (U-God and Masta Killa are not heavily featured on this album) all turn in awesome verses, with GZA topping it off at the end with the great line, "Niggas seeing pink hearts, yellow moons, orange stars, and green clovers." 5/5

5. Can It Be All So Simple - A laid back track with RZA sampling an old female vocalist for the chorus. Raekwon the Chef and Ghostface Killah trade verses about "the good old days." Not as good as the remix on Raekwon's Only Built 4 Cuban Linx, but still a good song in it's own right. The best part is at the end, where Method Man (on the radio) describes the name of every Clan member. 3.5/5

6. Da Mystery of Chessboxin' - The best kung-fu sample on the album starts this one out, along with U-God's only verse on the album (and it's a memorable one - U-God was in jail for most of the recording of this album, explaining why he doesn't appear much). Inspectah Deck, Raekwon, and Method Man appear, but the real highlights here are Ol' Dirty Bastard (especially) and Ghostface Killah (who turns in his best verse on the album and maybe ever). ODB's crazy style is in full swing here as he half raps and half sings, rambling through the whole thing sounding like he's drunk. You'll have to listen to it yourself. Masta Killa closes the song out with his only appearance on the album (he was then very young and inexperienced and was the last to join the Clan), delivering a respectable verse. 4.5/5

7. Wu-Tang Clan Ain't Nuthin Ta Fu*k Wit - Self-explanatory. Great beat. RZA spits his best verse ever to start it off and Inspectah Deck and Method Man follow. RZA ends it by shouting out to every city/state/nation he's ever heard of. Listening to this will make you jump around uncontrollably/fight somebody/etc. 5/5

8. C.R.E.A.M. - Cash Rules Everything Around Me. Wu-Tang's breakthrough single features Raekwon and Inspectah Deck delivering insightful verses about the hardships of urban life and trying to get those dead presidents. Method Man provides the insanely catchy chorus, and RZA continues to make those gritty, underground beats while not sounding repetitive over the entire album. 4.5/5

9. Method Man - Method Man's solo song. Begins with a hilarious "torture skit," but the song (as always) is the highlight here. Method Man may not be the Clan's best lyricist (that's GZA) or even the best storyteller (that's Raekwon), but, overall, he is the Clan's best rapper. His clever, witty, charismatic flows are at home over any beat and in any situation. RZA is also at his best here. 5/5

10. Protect Ya Neck - It all started here - this is Wu-Tang's first song, and the single that landed them a record deal. As the story goes, RZA told everybody to bring $100 and their best verse to the studio, and this song was born. Every clan member (except Masta Killa; and U-God only has two lines) is in top form here, with another fantastic beat from RZA. GZA again provides the highlight with his scathing attack on the A&R men that dropped him from his previous label and passed on Wu-Tang. 5/5

11. Tearz - The only track I would take off of the album. It's not a bad track, but it doesn't live up to all of the others. The only one that I skip. RZA and Ghostface with verses about hardships. 2.5/5

12. 7th Chamber, Pt. II - A remix of the first "7th Chamber." It's a good beat, but I overwhelmingly prefer the other one. Ends with another clip from the radio. This would get a higher score if it was its own song. 3/5

I know this review might sound really biased, but I listen to ALL kinds of music (I have the broadest taste out of any of my friends) and this remains my favorite album EVER. I also should say here something about the verses - there was never any set order or set lineup of who would be on a song. RZA would make the beat, and then all members would battle, and the best verses got to stay on. That guarunteed that the best lyrics/flows made it through. These, combined with RZA's production (he's a genius), make this album as close to perfect as any album could get.


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Comments:Add a Comment 
lhammill15
August 14th 2007


2 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

first review, best album ever

Conky
August 14th 2007


227 Comments


Well then. What even helps you sleep at night. And that's all that matters...This Message Edited On 08.14.07

Brain Dead
August 14th 2007


1150 Comments


I've heard some pretty convincing evidence as to this being the best hip-hop album ever, and I really loved GZA's solo release Liquid Swords. This is another one of those albums that I really need.

blackmilk
August 14th 2007


584 Comments


Whoever negged this person's review is an idiot. It's only their first.

Brain Dead
August 14th 2007


1150 Comments


it was probably that conky fag who only likes shitty classic rock/beatles stuff.

Conky
August 14th 2007


227 Comments


I duno.. I can't remember. Possible though and 1 I am not a fag. 2. the beatles are not shit. And 3. I didn't say that this review was crap or that this album was bad or that this type of music is bad. Everyone has their right to an opinion. and Geeze you like system of a down. who the hell are you calling a fag?

Conky
August 14th 2007


227 Comments


Plus I never say if the review was well written or not due to the fact that i don't know what a well written revirew is because i've only written one myslef so yeah thanks for the false accusation.

Geedrummer
August 14th 2007


607 Comments


i like some hip hop but i cant stand the way they always use stuff like "wit" and "da" etc etc

habnt heard this This Message Edited On 08.14.07

Brain Dead
August 14th 2007


1150 Comments


Has anyone heard the Shame on a Nigga remake by System of a Down?
It's pretty cool.

jrowa001
August 14th 2007


8750 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

yeah i heard it, it was cool. great album, and good review. for me i dont like the use of nigga or f*** a whole lot but this and liquid swords dont bother meThis Message Edited On 08.14.07

Doppelganger
August 14th 2007


3124 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I've heard nothing but outstanding things about this album, but I'm still not really interested in the least.

ghostface30612
August 14th 2007


141 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I live in Staten Island, and this is a pretty respectable and influential album, to say the least.

ghostface30612
August 14th 2007


141 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Heh just look at my name

Thor
August 14th 2007


10195 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Phenomenal album. Da Mystery Of Chessboxin' is a masterpiece.

MrKite
August 14th 2007


5020 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Phenomenal album.


lhammill15
August 14th 2007


2 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

The Beatles > 50 Cent


that's fairly obvious. you are comparing one genre's best to another genre's worst.

Thor
August 14th 2007


10195 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

People who make comments like that make me cry on the inside.

I can't decide who I like more, GZA or Ghostface. GZA's probably better lyrically but Ghostface's voice just gets me pumped up so hard.This Message Edited On 08.14.07

SpinLightTwo
August 14th 2007


1043 Comments


word.

so I should give this a listen?This Message Edited On 08.14.07

Thor
August 14th 2007


10195 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

If you like music, yes.

SpinLightTwo
August 14th 2007


1043 Comments


Hey!
I like music.



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