As any faithful head knows, this past weekend marked the 20th anniversary of Wu Tang Clan’s legendary debut album Enter The Wu Tang (36 Chambers).
As a fan of the group and a torchbearer of their hyper lyrical influences, it was only right to talk to the homie Wrekonize about the impact this hip hop classic had on his life and on hip hop in general.
After our conversation with Wrekonize, it’s more evident than ever that Wu Tang Clan ain’t nothin to fuck with.
Check out the full interview below.
When did you first hear Enter The WuTang?
Oh man, I was in 6th grade I wanna say. Just coming into middle school and there was a group of older kids that were like high school kids that lived around the block that were friends with a friend of mine, so we used to go kick it with them and they had gotten the album and that was the first time I got introduced to Wu or whatever. It was one of those things where the older kids were like, “Yo, don’t worry about this, this ain’t for you guys” or whatever the fuck and we were like, “Wait what is that? We need to be a part of this! We wanna hear this shit!” Ya know? So yeah, I guess 6th grade I was about 12-13, that’s a life changing album for sure.
Do you have a favorite Wu Tang member?
Ah man, we just had this debate recently too, which is funny. When I first got asked that, mine used to be – like when the albums were coming out – GZA was one of my favorites. I just like his vocal tone, and I thought his lyrics were always super on-point, and then I guess coming up right behind him would be Meth, so it’s kind of a two-way tie. Because Method kinda started to take the place because he just prolonged his career and kept on going and did the albums with Red, so it’s kind of a two-way tie for me. At the times the albums were coming out, I’d say GZA, but now looking back I’m kind of on a Method Man tip.
What would you say Enter The Wu Tang did for hip hop?
Ah man, what did it do for hip hop? I think it really just opened up and bridged the gap between what was considered to be underground and mainstream at the time, and showed that you could really go left of center and do some wild shit and some gritty, grimy shit for the time and still sell a huge amount of records and sell what a mainstream album would sell. So I think it just bridged the cap and it definitely inspired a lot of creativity. It definitely was ahead of it’s time.
Which Wu Tang member would you like to collab with the most?
I’d have to say, man…is it dead or alive? Because ODB would be fun as hell to work with.
Nah, you can totally pick ODB.
Yeah, I think ODB would definitely be one. If it wasn’t dead or alive, if it was somebody today…I would say RZA probably. I dig dude’s style and he still does great production, and I think he’d be fun to work with.
That would be so epic.
Yeah man, super dope. We actually came close to getting RZA for a ¡MAYDAY! track. We were gonna do a remix off the last album and it ended up falling through, but hopefully we’ll knock it out in the future.
Is there anyone out right now that you would compare to Wu Tang?
I guess…I didn’t think of this on my own, and it’s really just a public thing I hear a lot. A lot of people say Odd Future is similar to Wu Tang, and at first I wasn’t 100% aligned with that opinion, I guess just because of nostalgia’s sake and, ya know how when you remember something it’s different and it’s hard to compare to things that are out today?
But after sitting with that for a while, I would say Odd Future just because their attitude is left of center of hip hop today, and their beats are very like minimal and lo-fi sounding. So I would say yeah, right now the closest that really comes to Wu as a collective would be Odd Future. I think really they’re the ones that stand out the furthest for comparisons to Wu. I know they may not be the same style of lyrics, and I always thought the Wu Tang beats were a little funkier than what Odd Future does today, but the comparison is realistic.
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