The soundtrack to your sneakers…
Welcome people to a brand new Feeture here on The Word on the Feet. My name is DJ Steve Austin a DJ from outta New York and part of the legendary DJ Clue’s Desert Storm Radio. You know sneakers and music go hand in hand for me and when you’re rolling around town with the freshest kicks on foot you’re gonna need some tunes blowing in your ears, call it the soundtrack to your sneakers! So every week I’m gonna be giving you a Friday music review letting you know about some tunes before you go out on Friday night or for your phone or ipod when you’re out on a campout. We start the Feeture this week with the latest album from arguably the greatest rap group EVER, from my part of the world; the Wu-Tang Clan.
Wu-Tang Clan, A Better Tomorrow. Warner Bros; 2014.
Remember how you FELT the first time you heard the Wu? Me, twas late fall of ’93, word came down the pipeline that one of our boys had some problems with some dudes from his school. Not from 40TH STREET BLACK, we were from Uniondale Long Island and my boy went to Baldwin HS. We weren’t gangsters, nor were we thugs, no RON O’NEAL on the team. We were just kids that stuck together and had each others’ back no matter what…that thing called loyalty. Still we were about to bring the RUCKUS IN B MINOR, leave nothing but CRUSHED EGOS. Wouldn’t be a case of MISTAKEN IDENTITY, no need for anyone to KEEP WATCH and certainly no need for anyone to HOLD THE HEATER…we didn’t get down like that. Like I said, we weren’t gangsters. So about ten of us packed into my old man’s Ford Econoline van with my older brother at the helm. Someone popped 36 Chambers into the tape deck…yea tape deck…and so it began!! Wasting no time, I went out and copped my own copy and let that tape rock til the tape popped. Honestly it wasn’t the style of Hip-Hop that I would normally listen to but it captivated me. I could see that Wu-Tang aimed to PIONEER THE FRONTIER. I knew from that point Hip-Hop would never be the same.
Over 20 years since that first Wu-Tang experience and I’m feeling a bit nostalgic. My first listen to “A BETTER TOMORROW” brought me back to ’93 and simultaneously kept me in my grown man state. My second listen had me paying attention to each word in each verse. My third listen had me breaking down the tracks to the foundation of classic Wu-Tang material that makes this album raw and at the same relatable. Probably not something a PREACHER’S DAUGHTER should be listening to but definitely something those with a true love for real Hip-Hop should have in their collection. Giving much credit for remaining true to the game, the entire squad has stepped to the plate and delivered a grand slam. Will these tracks make you want to tuck your NECKLACE while in the club, maybe not, but you will definitely bob your head and listen intently.
Despite what other critics may say and barring the disagreements amongst some of the members, it wasn’t a MIRACLE that the Clan was able to come together, it was destiny. While most would have wanted to hear a more controversial, gully, street album, I feel the Clan has grown up. I was a kid when I started to listen to the Wu and I too have grown up since then. We can’t expect artists now into their 40’s to NEVER LET GO and spit those same grimy lyrics they did 20 plus years ago. That to me would be a false representation. The genius behind the album is that as a whole the Clan isn’t trying to portray anything other than what they are at present time…adults. Showing great transformation on lyrical content without sacrificing lyrical skill is a true testament to being great artists. Hearing conscious verses from some of the most hardcore rappers is a refreshing feeling. I’m certainly pleased with the WU-TANG REUNION and will definitely have a few of these tracks in rotation on the We Can Rebuild It Radio Show on desertstormradio.com, Saturdays from 4-6PM EST, 9-11PM GMT .
This album provides the Ying to the Yang and puts a stamp on the final chapter of the legendary Wu-Tang Clan!
Catch me next week, hope you enjoyed the very first Beats for your Feet Friday. And don’t forget to hit me up using the links below.