Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Genres: Special Interest, Pop, Rap & Hip-Hop
Some Wu members, like Cappadonna, are overly concerned with the way they dress, while others are a plain ol' inebriated mess (read: Ol' Dirty Bastard). For the GZA, it's all about the lyrics. With his nasal delivery and ra... more »
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Some Wu members, like Cappadonna, are overly concerned with the way they dress, while others are a plain ol' inebriated mess (read: Ol' Dirty Bastard). For the GZA, it's all about the lyrics. With his nasal delivery and rapid-fire flow, he is the most experienced and oldest member of the Wu Tang Clan (he released a pre-Wu LP on Cold Chillin' Records entitled Words from the Genius in 1991). GZA's forte is battle rhymes (on his self-titled cut he declares that wack MCs' "lyrics are weak, like clock radio speakers"). On "Labels" he eloquently pens a complete song using only rap record label names. Loaded wordplay aside, beat-wise Liquid Swords is fully and exceptionally RZA-produced (peep the electric guitars and spacey synths on "Investigative Reports"). Liquid Swords is a perfect purchase for rap fiends who crave ill experimental beats and even iller punchlines. --Dalton Higgins
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The best of the pre- Wu-tang Forever set...
Campbell Roark | from under the floorboards and through the woods.. | 01/24/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is a classic. My desert island Wu-Tang pick, simply because everyone else would be packing '...36 Chambers.' And maybe they'd be right... Liquid Swords- It's one of those albums that bring people into hip-hop, one of those albums that I buy used whenever I see a copy for under 5 bucks, simply so I can give it as a present to a friend who 'doesn't get hip hop.' It's also one of the few hip hop albums that I have on dual formats (CD and vinyl) and tracked down the instrumentals too. It's just that good. It's dark, macabre, over the top and surreal. The RZA's production is top notch, The samples and beats are spare, gritty, rambling, odd- this is ANTI-P.Diddy music. The myriad kung-fu interludes for once don't work against the overall thematic drive, in fact, they heighten the album's doomed theatrics. The whole thing works perfectly. My brother and I have played many games of chess to this masterpiece. Good also for jogging, lifting, washing dishes, playing cards, driving long distancxes with friends chanting the lyrics...which reminds me- Lyrically, this is just on a different plane. NO ONE sounds like the GZA- he's one of those inimitable individuals who can't help but rock his own way. His flow and verbosity are seldom matched in the arenas of today. I'd say he's up there with KRS-ONE, Guru, Black Thought, Kool G Rap, early Ice Cube, and other originators of all vocal variety. The GZA ties out with Ghostface as my fave Wu-Tang MC, but Liquid Swords is a far better, denser, tighter, diamond hard album than Ironman (even despite the Al Green samples). Now then- Supreme Clientelle... hmmmm... In short- all of the best elements of early Wu-Tang, perfectly entwined. If you only have a handful of 'rap' Cds make this one of them!!!!"
Liquid Swords is A Genius' Work
DeBear | Boston, MA | 03/05/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Gza is the most lyrically sound emcee in the entire wu tang clan, and im not picking favorites, he is not even my favorite member of the clan. There is almost no doubting his remarkebly easy flow and creavtive metaphors, which can either make you just want to hear more, or rewind it to hear what he just said. While listening to this album, and earing some of his unbelieveably creative rhymes, I wondered how does he come up with these, "Lyrics are weak, like clock radio speakers", is just an example of his creatvity. He has the ability to hit you in all types of places which has been a rare quality in an emcee since the beginning of hip-hop and is completely exstinct in today's rap. Aside from the lyrics, Rza, brings in some of his sickest and his most eerie for this album. Using experimentally spooky and out there sounds to create his unbelieveable beats which are always put together perfectly to allow Gza to flow right over them. Some of the best Wu tang beats of all time are on this album, perhaps many are. Gza also often credits Rza for his insane production, "my sword still remain imperial, Before I blast the mic, RZA scratch off the serial" showing he knows he is not the only reason this album is monumental.As an emcee, Gza seems to make other rappers on his tracks better lyrically. Notably Inspectah Deck and Method Man. On the albums best song "Cold World", The inspectah virtually outshines Gza which is a complete shock considering how sick Gza's verse is. The inspectah seems to just be a bit hungrier,"No time to freeze undercovers roll up in grand prix and seize packages and pocket the currency, clicks control strips full clips are sprayed, Yellow tape barricades sidewalks where bodies lay". Aside from whose better on the track, the two make the best tag team wu record of all time. However, its not just the lyrics that make this the best song on the album, the beat is also the best on the album, with spooky violins and drums which just flow so sickly. Another great tag team callobo is "Shadowboxin" featuring Method man. Gza does not get outshined on this one, though Meth throws in a sick verse. When Gza kicks the second verse though, he's hungry and he actually shows it a bit more then usual, he usually just seems so confident he doesn't have to be aggressive but his slight aggressiveness on this track is outstanding, "I slayed MC's back in the rec room era, My style broke mother_______ backs like Ken Patera, Most rap ______ came loud but unheard Once I pulled out, round em off to the nearest third". The beat on this one is also top of line, not as scary, more quietly aggressive, simple but not light. The "Oh man" every few seconds that chimes in is a nice touch.One of the most creative rap songs ever written, and Im not exaggerating, is "Labels". Gza is able to tell a story while using the name of music labels, and he is not crediting them, more like he's dissing them. Never have I heard an emcee even attempt to create something like this, truly proof that he his the genius. "Investigative Reports" is another great track. It opens up with a sick verse from Raekwon. With U-god telling different reports during the chorus with a newscast going on in the backround. The beat is one of those that hit home, they go to your head and you don't hear the different instruments, just the beat as a whole, and it is a great one. "Swordsman" has a great beat that is mostly drums with strange sounds in the backround. Lyrically Gza seems to be trying to say something but he adds "I'm not caught up in politics I'm no black activist", so I guess it's more about self then political indevers. The final track is not Gza but it furthur prooves that success around "Liquid Swords" is contagious, Killah Priests raps the vastly different from the rest of the album "Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth". It has more of a funky beat and it's a biblical song, initials are B.I.B.L.E. Priest tells a great story of his childhood and gives out instructions before leaving earth.Every time I listen to this album, it gets better. Everytime I notice something different whether lyrically, or musically. It is easily the best Wu Tang solo album and perhaps riviles "Enter the Wu Tang" as best Wu production period, well not quite. Every track on this album is bangin' with some of them just completely off the chains. Could be lyrically the best album I have heard, and it shows how much of an amazing lyracist Gza is. He never changes his tone which is affective because he smooth easy flow is so good he does not need to compromise it at all. Not only Gza made this album the phenomenom it is, much of its success is due to the producer, Rza. "Liquid Swords has it's place amongst the greatest of all time and easily is one of my personal favorites."
The-Bus | Delaware | 01/05/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
""When I was litte, my father was famous. He was the greatest Samurai in the empire, and he was the Shogun's decapitator. He cut off the heads of a 131 lords. It was a bad time for the empire..."With this intro, spoken by a small child over husky, scratched strings, Genius/GZA explodes onto what is possibly one of the finest albums in Wu-Tang's (and therefore hip-hop's) collection. The keyboard loop on the title track builds tension without releasing it, creating an (intentional) musical headache that GZA's voice cures like a double dose of aspirin. The album only goes on from there, with GZA and a few guests riding the dark horse of RZA's production into the sunset. Possibly the peak of Wu-Tang, 'Liquid Swords' still stands as one of the crown jewels of 90's hip-hop, still somewhat undiscovered as it doesn't have the flashy attraction of the other cubic zirconia on record store shelves."