top of page

Craft, activity and play ideas

Public·1 member

Method Man, Tical 2000 : Judgement Day Full Album Zip LINK

Wu-Tang Clan (and solo work)Reviewed on this page:Enter The Wu-Tang (36 Chambers) - 6 Feet Deep - Tical - Return To The 36 Chambers: The Dirty Version -Only Built 4 Cuban Linx... - Liquid Swords - Ironman -The Pick, The Sickle And The Shovel - Wu-Tang Forever - Heavy Mental - ThePillage - Sunz Of Man (The Last Shall Be First) - The Swarm - La The Darkman -RZA As Bobby Digital In Stereo - Tical 2000: Judgment Day -Wu-Chronicles - Beneath The Surface -Nigga Please - Uncontrolled Substance -Golden Arms Redemption - Immobilarity - Supreme Clientele - Ghost Dog: Way of the Samurai -The W - The Yin And The Yang - The Genuine Article- Digital Bullet - Bulletproof Wallets - Iron Flag -The Trials And Tribulations Of Russell Jones - The Sting - Legend Of The Liquid Sword - Love Hell Or Right (Da Come Up) - Birth Of A Prince - The Pretty Toney Album -Bobby Digital Presents Northstar - Tical 0: The Prequel - NoSaid Date - Disciples Of The 36 Chambers: Chapter 1 - Grandmasters - FishScale - Afro Samurai: The Soundtrack - The Big Doe Rehab - 8 Diagrams - Wu-Tang Chamber Music - Only Built 4 Cuban Linx... Pt. II -Ghostdini, The Wizard Of Poetry - Wu-MassacreRussell Jones, better known as Ol' Dirty Bastard, collapsed and died in a Manhattan recording studio on November 13, 2004, from a combination of cocaine and Tramadol.You couldn't turn anywhere in the mid-90s without seeing someone from Wu-Tang,the nine- or ten-member hip hop confederation that put Staten Island onthe musical map. They followed up their hit 1993 debut with fivetop-selling solo projects, and have made even more headlines with erratic and/or illegal behavior from members Ghostface Killah and Ol' Dirty Bastard. Their frenetic approach to rap is eye-opening, with lots of internal rhymes and images piling up so fast it's often impressionistic rather than linear. But perhaps the most important factor in the group's success is producer The RZA, who has a completely original approach to hip hop, making heavy, ominous tracks out of bizarrely incongruous elements like fiddles, fake strings, sped-up movie soundtracks - pretty much anything he can get his hands on - in additionto the usual keyboards, vocal samples and drum loops. On the downside, "quality control" appears to be the only phrase not in the Wu vocabulary, and the level ofWu-endorsed product varies.In early 2005, RZA put out a book, The Wu-Tang Manual, which I promptly purchased and added to our book reviews page. The Clan's die-hard fans have mostly lost interest by now, and as a result the fan sites aren't what they used to be(5 Elements stopped updating, for one). Try Wu Forever.Personnel:The RZA (RobertDiggs, aka Prince Rakeem or Bobby Digital), Method Man(Clifford Smith), The GZA (Gary Grice, aka The Genius), Ol'Dirty Bastard (Russell Jones, aka ODB, Osirus and Big Baby Jesus),Masta Killer (Elgin Turner), Inspecta Deck (JasonHunter, aka The Rebel INS), U-God (Lamont Hawkins),Raekwon (Corey Woods, aka The Chef), Ghostface Killa(Dennis Coles). Cappadonna (Darryl Hill) joined c.1996. Words From The Genius (The Genius: 1991)A solo album from GZA, then known only as "The Genius." I think involvementby other Wu-Tang members is minimal to non-existent, though a 1994 reissue includes a track with RZA, "Pass The Bone." (DBW) Enter The Wu-Tang (36 Chambers) (1993)At the time, when laid-back West Coast G-funk ruled, the manic energy ofthis release - a seemingly infinite number of different rappers pouringout hallucinatory imagery; denser backing tracks than was believedpossible in the "all samples cleared" era - was shocking. Now thatthe group's innovations have been refined and copied so much, the discdoesn't pack quite the same punch. There are some wonderful eeriegrooves ("Wu-Tang: 7th Chamber," "Protect Ya Neck"), first-rate rhyming("Method Man"), and they're just about the only hip-hop act whosebetween-song skits are actually funny ("Clan In Da Front"). Whenthey get serious, they can be devastating (the nostalgic "Can It BeAll So Simple"). And with so much talent on hand, the record never has achance to get dull: even the minor tracks hold your attention ("Wu-TangClan Ain't Nuthing Ta F' Wit"). (DBW) 6 Feet Deep (Gravediggaz: 1994)Right away, a side project: RZA plus Poetic, De La Soul's Prince Pauland Frukwan. It's ultraviolent in the horror style pioneered, I believe,by the Geto Boys - which is to say, it's like a rap version of TexasChainsaw Massacre, plenty of murder and mayhem spiced with theoccasional occult reference. The blood and guts preoccupation gets oldreal fast, but taken individually many of the tracks are effective, andthe furiously paced, genuinely scary "Diary Of A Madman" is perhaps themasterpiece of the genre. That track is RZA's, but most of the disc isproduced by Prince Paul, and he makes some interesting choices: themellow soul groove of "1-800 SUICIDE" only makes the gleefully dementedvocals more disturbing; the brief "Mommy, What's A Gravedigga?" makesgood use of an obscure Patrice Rushensample; the dense, wordless "Rest In Peace (Outro)" is fascinating. RZAdoes contribute the title track, which is so weirdly out of tune itsounds like a put-on, and the routine "Graveyard Chamber." You'reunlikely to keep this in heavy rotation unless you're an Omenfan, and it's not like any other Wu-associated offering, but the witty,unpredictable rhyming and offbeat production make this a worth alisten... borrow it from a friend. (DBW) Tical (Method Man: 1994)First, the music: RZA's thick stew of samples, beats and foundsounds is masterful throughout (title track, "I Get My Thang In Action"), as even the simpler tracks are powerful and original ("Sub Crazy"). Blue Raspberry'sbelted chorus on "Release Yo' Delf" (the first of her many appearanceson backing vocals) and diva vocals on "Stimulation" areamong the high points. As for Meth, I must be missing something: he'sthe most respected of all the Wu rappers, and his voice has a lot oftonal variety: he sounds so different from track to track - low-key andgroggy on "Biscuits," forceful and focused on "I Get My Thang InAction," tender like LL on "All I Need" - you'll wonderif it's all the same person. But his rhymes are often obvious andcliché-filled - there's enough "y'know wh' I'm sayin'," "keepin'it real" and "represent" for five albums - and scattershot, without theintriguing pet themes of the other members. Thus, the most enjoyabletrack is probably "Mr. Sandman," with its profusion of guest rappers(RZA, Inspectah Deck, Street Thug and Carlton Fisk - no, not the ballplayer - who almost steals the show) - though Raekwon's guest appearance ("MethVs. Chef") is dull. Everything's produced by RZA, but 4th Disciple getsa co-producing credit for "Sub Crazy," and Meth gets one for "P.L.O.Style" (which has nothing to do with the P.L.O., if you're wondering).The remix version of "All I Need" (based on Ashford & Simpson's "You're All I Need ToGet By") featuring Mary J. Blige was a majorhit. Too bad it's not on the album, though there is a fine remix of theearlier Wu-Tang single "Method Man." (DBW) Return To The 36 Chambers: The Dirty Version (Ol' Dirty Bastard: 1995)ODB is the group's comic relief, a caricature of a self-absorbed,sex-obsessed rapper, and I had to wonder how he could carry a wholealbum. And indeed, the humorous interludes are hit and miss: "Intro" ishilariously over the top, but "Goin' Down" is just excessive. His rhymeswalk the line between silly and just plain dumb, though more often thannot his "try anything" delivery makes it work. More significantly, RZAis at his peak: catchy piano hooks, sound effects, unrecognizably briefsnippets, and constantly shifting drum programming - the more bizarre orunmusical the sample, the better it works ("Baby C'Mon"). And the restof the Clan drops by to provide some relief from the comic relief:Ghost Face Killer stands out on the powerhouse "Brooklyn Zoo II (TigerCrane)"; Method Man and Raekwon beef up "Raw Hide"; too many rappers tolist pop up on "Protect Ya Neck II The Zoo," including Dirty's brother,12 O'Clock. Only a few tracks weren't created by RZA, and most of themare fun too - "Brooklyn Zoo," produced by ODB and True Master, with someof the best rhyming on the record - though the bonus track "HarlemWorld" (by Big Dore) and the lame joke "Drunk Game" (by ODB and EthanRyman) miss the target. It's an up and down ride, but worth checkingout. (DBW) Only Built 4 Cuban Linx... (Raekwon: 1995)From what I can tell, Raekwon is the group member most focused(lyrically, at any rate) on guns, violence and drug dealing - in otherwords, he often fits the "gangsta rapper" stereotype. There are evenbetween-song skits of the group members portraying mafiosi, connected toa never-realized film to be called Wu-Gambinos. The RZA produced,arranged, engineered and mixed everything, but he went with astripped-down, one or two sample-per-song groove that's not nearly asinteresting as usual: outside of a couple of brilliant, unsettlingtracks ("Rainy Dayz" featuring Blue Raspberry, the closing "Heaven &Hell"), in several ways this is a run of the mill hip hop record despite its classic status. Raekwon even finds timefor some irritatingly stupid sexual ranting ("Ice Water," also featuringCappadonna). Raekwon gets a lot of help from the rest of the Clan -Ghost Face appears on 12 of the 17 cuts, and everyone turns up on onetrack or another except ODB and U-God. But they mostly just go alongfor the ride (Meth's shot on "Wu-Gambinos" is an exception), and thesame goes for the guest appearance by Nas on "Verbal Intercourse." As ifthe album weren't long enough already, the album includes a remixof "Can It Be All So Simple," and the CD-only bonus track is "North Star (Jewels)."(DBW) Liquid Swords (Genius/GZA: 1995)GZA's rap style is calm and confident, and he has a right to be: hisrhymes are sharp, original and to the point, and when he digs into a theme, it's often devastating ("Cold World," which borrows the melodyfrom Stevie Wonder's "Rocket Love"). Some of RZA's tunes (he produced everything here) have the simplicityof his work for Raekwon (title track), but they're never dull, largely because GZA's words and delivery are absorbing, and the guest appearancesare used to better effect ("Duel Of The Iron Mic" featuring ODB, Deck,Masta Killa, and Dreddy Kruger). On other tracks, RZA wheels out hisdense cacophonous approach, which can work wonders ("Gold"). Every single member of the group is on this one (Cappadonnahadn't joined yet), and so is Killah Priest, and this is about as goodan introduction to Wu style as the group's debut. The CD version has a bonus track, "B.I.B.L.E.," that later turned up on Priest's solo album. (DBW) Ironman (Ghostface Killa: 1996)Ghostface's lines on Raekwon's album weren't extraordinary, but hemakes up for it here, bursting out with complex wordplay and surprising humor - who else would compare himself and his girlfriend to Luke and Laura? - in the service of a generally positive vision ("Black Jesus"). But he doesn't hog the mike: he gives a lot of space to Raekwon (who does all the rhyming on "The Faster Blade"), and Cappadonna steals the show whenever he appears (he's hilarious on "Camay"). The lovely slow jam "All I Got Is You" is a tribute to his mother and growing up poor, with a moving guestappearance by Mary J. Blige; the flip side ofthat romanticism is a venomous tirade against a faithless lover ("Wildflower")that's all the more startling for its obvious sincerity. At times RZA seems strapped for ideas: "Daytona 500" is based on a loop previouslyused by Salt-N-Pepa, and there are more quotesfrom well known R&B tunes than usual (a rewrite of "NeverCan Say Goodbye" opening Meth's guest shot "Box In Hand"; "260" recallsAl Green). Still, he comes up with more than his share of winners ("Winter Warz," "Iron Maiden"). True Master sneaks in one cut, "Fish." ODB and GZA are the only Clan members who don't turn up this time; the 90s lineup of 60s smooth soul outfit The Delfonics sings on "After The Smoke IsClear." (DBW) Wu-Tang Forever (1997)After all the hit solo LPs, this release was hotly anticipated. Itstarts out brilliantly, with "Wu-Revolution," "Reunited" and "ForHeavens Sake" all striking and memorable, but almost every track followsthe same formula, and there's way more boasting about sexual performancethan we needed to hear (ODB's extra-offensive "Dog Shit"). This timearound, many of the best rhymes come from RZA himself ("Impossible"), but he farmed out some of the production chores, letting 4thDisciple have several tracks (the message tune "A Better Tomorrow"),while True Master produced "The M.G.M" and Deck produced hisfeature "Visionz." Presumably the two-disc format was required to giveenough room for each of the superstar rappers (though most tracksfeature four or five different group members, there are severalone-artist showcases), but from the listener's perspective, it'soverkill. On the other hand, everyone in the group comes across at their best in one spot or another, and practically every rhyme style and topic is covered somewhere,so it's a good starting point for getting to know the group.Poppa Wu, apparently the group's spiritual advisor ormentor or something, turns up on the opening number; and Tekithaappears on two tracks - Blue Raspberry is nowhere to be heard. Disc oneis enhanced with a video game or some such. (DBW) The Pick, The Sickle And The Shovel (Gravediggaz: 1997)The second Gravediggaz release couldn't be more different from thefirst. The slasher flick antics are gone, and instead the lyrics areshockingly mature, reflective and often nostalgic ("Fairytalez," "Never Gonna Come Back," the eco-anthem "The Night The Earth Cried") - hip hop poetry at its finest. Instead of the Prince Paul and RZA show, there are more producers than a Chaka Khan record: each of the group members produces at least one track, plus Truemaster (who seems to spell his name differently on every release), 4th Disciple, Goldfinghaz and Darkim. The music is more relaxed and subtle than RZA's usual mix, with lots of keyboard washes and mellow horns ("Unexplained"),and it lacks that cathartic thump, but the album rewards careful listening more than most Wu efforts. Guests include 9th Prince, Shabazz the Disciple and the Sunz of Man, who liven up "Repentance Day." (DBW)Silent Weapons For Quiet Wars (Killarmy: 1997)Killarmy is Dom Pachino, Killa Sin, 9th Prince, Islord, and Barretta 9;guests include Masta Killa and Sunz of Man, and 4th Disciple and RZAproduced. I have no idea who these guys are except that they're downwith Wu-Tang. Boy, this is confusing. (DBW) Heavy Mental (Killah Priest: 1998) A peripheral Wu-Tang release, with production by 4th Disciple and guestappearances by several group members, but nothing from RZA. KillahPriest is a rarity among rappers: His lyrics are absolutely brilliant,with ingenious fast-paced rhymes and Biblical images creating a mysticalmood (though his Black Israelite philosophy has disturbing antisemiticundertones), and even when he's just cutting down other rappers ("FakeMC's") he makes it sound cosmic. But he has no presence: he's sosoft-spoken he almost fades into the background. The backing tracks arebasic (simple drum loop, piano samples, snippets of female backingvocals), but would be servicable enough if he was a more commanding foregroundpresence. The tracks that really get your attention are the guest spots("Cross My Heart" with Inspectah Deck and GZA, "If You Don't Know" withODB) and a few cuts with noisier, more interesting music ("It's Over,"title track - the only one Killah Priest produced). Otherwise, if you'repaying close attention you'll be rewarded, but you may tune the recordout. Aside from 4th Disciple, producers include True Master, Y Kim, JohnThe Baptist and Nusrat Fatehy Ali Kahn. (DBW) The Pillage (Cappadonna: 1998)A pretty good record that got lost in the profusion of 1998 Wu releases.Cappadonna's a more straightforward storyteller than most of the Clan,and doesn't have the most distinctive presence, but his rapid-firerhymes are intelligent and hard-hitting. The music is consistentlycatchy and exotic, and producer Tru Master deserves a lot of the credit.Though basically sticking with RZA's kitsch-funk blueprint, he comes upwith interesting variations on "South Of The Border" (which useseverything but Mexican music), "Dart Throwing" (with Raekwon andMethod Man) and the blistering "Supa Ninjaz," with an ingeniouskeyboard hook and guest shots from Method Man and U-God. RZAhimself is in fine form: "Young Hearts" is a lovely ballad with adriving beat, and his Dragnet-meets-Nintendo "MCF" is a wonder.Goldfinghaz, Mathematics and 4th Disciple each produce a track or twoas well. If you want the Wu sonic approach without all the mysticism andsilly kung fu references, check this disc out. (DBW) Sunz Of Man (The Last Shall Be First) (Sunz Of Man: 1998)Another Wu auxiliary group, composed of Killah Priest, Prodigal Sunn,Hell Razah and 60 Sec. Assassin. This debut is pretty dull: lots of scattershot ranting over the ponderous grooves that have become a Wu-cliché at this point. I give them credit for trying to say something meaningful, but many of their rhymes are obvious ("Illusions") and there's just not much entertainment value. (I might rate them higher if I were interested in their black capitalist, borderline anti-Semitic perspective, but not by much.) The disc would be a washoutif it weren't for a few tunes with brilliant backing tracks: RZA's "Tribulations," True Master's "Intellectuals" and4th Disciple's moving "Not Promised Tomorrow." Matters are also improved by the lengthy guest list, which includes Meth, U-God, Masta Killa, Raekwon, True Master and Tekitha. However, "Shining Star," produced by Wyclef Jean and featuring Earth Wind & Fire, seems like a calculated attempt to produce a hit along the lines of "Ghetto Superstar," but it burned out without hitting the charts. A sign that RZA and company may be spreading themselves too thin.(DBW) The Swarm (Wu-Tang Killer Bees: 1998)Released the same day as the Sunz of Man disc (don't these folks ever worry about flooding the market?), this is a various artists compilation, including such obscure acts as A.I.G. and Black Knights Of The North Star. In many cases,the groups are just running the standard Wu-Tang sound into the ground, with chanted choruses and a slow beat supplemented with a laid-back piano loop (The Beggaz' "On The Strength," Sunz Of Man's "Concrete Jungle"), though Ruthless Bastardssucceed by coming up with a really good chanted chorus and a really good laid-back piano loop ("Bastards"). Wu Syndicate's "Where Was Heaven" is a pleasant slow inspirational number recalling Ghostface Killah's "All I Got Is You," and Remedy's "Never Again" (later included on his solo debut) is easily the best song about the Holocaust I've ever heard.Most of the original Clan is also on hand, and they contribute many of the album's best tracks: Inspectah Deck's self-produced"S.O.S.," "And Justice For All" by Bobby Digital (aka RZA) with Killarmy and Method Man. On the other hand, Ghostface's "Cobra Clutch" is spoiled by prominent, distracting sampled screams. Cappadonna and Ghostface's "'97 Mentality" has an obvious, repetitive hook, but the rhymes are so fast and clever it works anyway. RZA produced five tracks, including the fine "Co-Defendant" by Shyheim featuring Hell Raiza. The disc is uneven: if you listen to all the weak tracks you'll get bored, butthere's enough good stuff to make it worth checking out if you find it cheap. (DBW)Dirty Weaponry (Killarmy: 1998)Produced by 4th Disciple and Ma


Welcome to the group! You can connect with other members, ge...


bottom of page