Album review: Wu-Tang Clan - A Better Tomorrow

Looking to the future by remembering the past is a feeling that pervades the album. It’s been 20-plus years since The Wu entered the stage with 36 Chambers, and they have stayed true to the foundation.

A Better Tomorrow

Wu-Tang Clan

Warner Bros

Three stars

Clan member ODB once proclaimed: “Wu-Tang is for the children.” On the American hip-hop group’s sixth album, A Better Tomorrow, U-God reinforces the sentiment: We “construct these jewels so they can live through my descendants”. On Never Let Go, Method Man echoes the feeling, but reminds listeners: “The hood is what made me.” Looking to the future by remembering the past is a feeling that pervades the album. It’s been 20-plus years since The Wu entered the stage with 36 Chambers, and they have stayed true to the foundation. The family affair is only part of the tale. Masta Killa is “like Justin Tuck how they ducking the rush”, while INS bombs “like the No. 81 from Detroit”. Ghostface Killah tabs himself Dragonfly Tone, and rhymes “scarier” with “Syria”. RZA is still the unifying centre, and the production is massive. On Ruckus in B Minor, he seamlessly flips the underlying script for every rapper, delivering each MC a personalised cinematic backdrop. In other spots he bum-rushes the hook and digs up a choice O’Jays sample. The sure shots are 40th Street Black / We Will Fight with its marching-band momentum.

Published: December 8, 2014 04:00 AM

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