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Meth, Ghost, and Rae – Wu-Massacre

on April 09, 2010, 8:02am

This collaboration has been in the works for quite a while, and folks, it was worth the wait. Despite the lack of originality in choosing a name as a trio, they impress in literally every other way (e.g. a guest spot by Tracy Morgan about how to correctly pay your rent, anyone?). And actually, the uninspired name may have been deliberate, as this album is the closest we’ve heard to a real Wu-Tang album since 8 Diagrams was released in 2007.

Method Man, Ghostface Killah, and Raekwon are undoubtedly three of the most prolific and talented members of The Clan, and they solidify their status in hip-hop with this latest release. Method’s absurd, witty lyricism mesh with Ghostface’s outraged rhymes, which both interweave seamlessly with Raekwon’s clean, endless flow. Now multiply this by soul-heavy sampling and production by Wu affiliates RZA and Mathematics, and you’ve got yourself a winner. The only question is, why didn’t anyone think of this sooner?

Wu-Massacre is proof that despite an endless number of petty beefs and an overall lack of focus, The Clan is full to the brim of naturally talented artists. It’s proof that they still got it, if you will. There isn’t a single track on this album that isn’t impeccably complex and more importantly, impeccably rapped on. All three rappers spit seamlessly for the entirety of the too short (or Too $hort, if you prefer) 29:38 of this album.

It seems that the majority of the solo efforts and collaborative side projects of the members of the Wu-Tang Clan are lacking in consistency. Every single release has its highs, but each more than its fair share of lows. There are certain releases that supersede the previous observation (Liquid Swords, Supreme Clientele, Blackout!, Cuban Linx 1 and 2,), but for the most part, the solo endeavors have been considerably weaker than anything The Clan has done. As far as Wu-Massacre goes, go ahead and add it to that list of mold-breaking efforts that impresses despite its being a side project.

Meth, Ghost, and Rae return to the old ways, using beats reminiscent of the authentic 90’s hip-hop they mastered in their day. They return to ragging on other rappers, except now they’ve evolved with the times and instead of tearing apart Mase, they’ve moved to talking about J. Holiday. And although the times have changed, their flow has not. This is illustrated throughout the album, but particularly on the tracks “Miranda”, “Gunshowers”, “Smooth Sailin’”, and on the Michael Jackson sampling heavy-hitter, “Our Dreams”. They even return to the anthemic, chant-style choruses on tracks, “It’s That Wu Shit” and “Gunshowers.”

All in all, this is a refreshing album that’s destined to take you on a vivid trip down memory lane if you have any previous history with the Wu boys. It’s encouraging to see that they haven’t assumed the role of “has-beens” as so many of their contemporaries have done in recent years. And granted, it’s taxing to wade through the massive back catalogue of Wu-affiliated albums. Some of them are hip-hop classics and others are total throw-aways. And there’s really no way to give each one a proper listen unless you are unemployed and have nothing better to do, so let me just simplify things for you: this is one you need to hear. Once again, it’s the closest we’ve heard to a legit Wu album since 2007.

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