This album is pretty overrated in my eyes. A lot of people regard it as the greatest release by Wu-Tang but I don't see what other people see I guess.
See the other members of Wu-Tang have a defined style and aesthetic which gives their music a unique flavor, Method Man is the weed smoking party rapper, Ghostface Killah is a bad ass kingpin ladies man, Ol Dirty Bastard has this off the wall anything goes almost experimental thing going on, Raekwon has grounded gritty street oriented lyrics, but GZA? He sometimes references chemicals or astronomical stuff so people say he's intellectual. His album just isn't as defined as the others are, it doesn't have the same great flavor that Supreme Clientelle and 36 Chambers has. GZA isn't even that lyrical, he doesn't get super personal with his lyrics, he's just kind of a blend of other wu tang members just not as defined or as enjoyable, to me at least. I've listened to Liquid Swords many times trying to see what other people see and I really think that among the first generation of solo Wu Tang releases (Tical, Return of The 36, Iron Man, OB4CL) that it is the weakest of all of them.
But that's just me, why do you guys like this album? What am I not seeing.
I like this album, but I think GFK has the title of best Wu solo rapper and best Wu solo release, with Ironman. Liquid Swords is good but like you said to me it's only good, not great.
GZA and RZA together represent the most well known aspect of the Wu that's also representative here. The Shaolin/Wudang. The Tigerstyle, shadowboxing, etc. It's that weird obsession of things like kung fu shit, comic book characters, the occult, and whatnot. 36 Chambers for example is predominantly this stuff but also has aspects of those other rappers that you mentioned. Liquid Swords is just this obsession with stuff that wasn't necessarily common in hip-hop around the time.
This album's cool as shit cuz it really takes advantage of their obsession with such things and is really creative with them lyrically and with the beats creates the aesthetic that is unique to RZA/GZA/the Wu.
Hope that made sense.
To me, a very strong point on the album is its brevity: it does not overstay its welcome, and while I don't like Gold or I Gotcha Back, every other song is fantastic. On every other wu-album of the era (ESPECIALLY Tical) I am stuck sitting through a number of very dull tracks that due to RZA's homogenous production style generally sound very similar to one another.
2. GZA's lyricism is to me the most emotional. He has a very detatched delivery but to me always came off as heartfelt in his warnings on street violence or other tragic tales. He seems involved and sympathetic with his subject, something I don't find terribly common. I see where you come in the lyricism department though - he often jumps subject matter and approach, making him seem inconsistent as opposed to Ghostface or Method Man's very set style, and as such I find GZA verses a "gamble" of sorts - either he kills it or it's lukewarm at best.
the intellectual bit comes from vocabulary, not nesscessarily diversity of knowledge; I'd agree he's probably just as smart as the other members of the clan, or at least comes off not much smarter, but I do think his varied word choice fosters more original lines.
I agree this album is overrated, but it's one of the best of the first Wu joints for sure.
>Ghost is the greatest MC in the Wu in my eyes as well. I don't go more than a month without listening to Supreme Clientelle.
Agree but in Wu-Tang's context, Inspectah Deck was the best one with best verses.
I'm not very good at formulating my thoughts about why I like some albums so much.
Basically, to me, Liquid Swords feels like a true followup to 36 Chambers. We never got a true sequel or successor from the actual "Wu Tang Clan" group, and that's a shame. Liquid Swords could be called Enter the Wu Tang 2: Liquid Swords, and it would fit right in.
I love the aesthetic of 36 Chambers. Dark, grimy, gritty, brutal, the whole samurai movie clips spliced in, you can picture these 9 dudes sititng in a dank fuckin basement filled with smoke just going hard while samurai movies play on a shitty TV in the corner.
Everyone else took their own style like you said, but Liquid Swords was the only one that expanded upon this idea. It's darker, it's meaner, the "shaolin" influence is stronger, and it's got all 9 members of the Clan at their peak performance.
I just really like the aesthetic.
Kinda feel the same honestly but I can definitely understand the praise it receives. If you think GZA isn't impressive lyrically you really need to listen again.
what a ridiculous overstatement
Yeah, ten seconds into that beat and it felt like rediscovering 36 Chambers all over again.
Even though it's super gritty, there's something really fucking fun about it. I feel that way about all boom-bap for some reason though.
deck is GOAT on Wu Tang tracks and features, like, he legit always has the best verse. His solo albums are major disappointments though.
He doesn't get personal but GZA has always had the most brutal fucking rhymes out of the whole clan, and his wordplay is arguably the best in the game to this day. On this album he totally fuckin' slays, and I love it.
Liquid Swords is all GZA/RZA. All of GZA's other albums are GZA doing god tier rapping/lyricism as usual and some mediocre as fuck guys doing beats with the occasional beat done by RZA and/or GZA. Beneath the Surface is listenable since he had Inspecta Deck and a couple other decent guys on board for beats. The other albums he just had awful beat makers I don't even know what the fuck happened. Like if they were mediocre beats they would've still been good albums but the beats literally were bad enough to bring down the overall quality of the albums.
That's not what the lyric is at all
Not even close...
>WHY DID JUDAS RAT TO ROMANS WHILE JESUS SLEPT
and the two lines before it are the answer. Why is sky blue? why is water wet? why did judas rat?
They're unanswerable questions and they just are. That's the entire point of that line and the crux of the verse
I just think it's funny you've had the completely wrong idea for so long