Hip Hop Be Bop


Hip Hop Be Bop


Nas – Illmatic (Reissue LP on red marbled vinyl) [National Album Day / Columbia 2022]


El Michels Affair – 4th Chamber / Snakes (7″) [Big Crown Records]

4th Chamber

Wu-Tang Clan – Enter The Wu-Tang (Reissue LP on gold marbled vinyl) [National Album Day / LOUD


Wu-Tang Clan’s debut, ‘Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers)’, was one of the most influential rap albums of the ’90s. Its sparse yet atmospheric production – courtesy of RZA – mapped out the sonic blueprint that countless other hardcore rappers would follow for years to come. It laid the groundwork for the rebirth of New York hip-hop in the hardcore age, paving the way for everybody from Biggie and Jay-Z to Nas and Mobb Deep. Moreover, it introduced a colourful cast of hugely talented MCs, some of whom ranked among the best and most unique individual rappers of the decade. Some were outsized, theatrical personalities, others were cerebral storytellers and lyrical technicians, but each had his own distinctive style, which made for an album of tremendous variety and consistency. Every track on ‘Enter the Wu-Tang’ is packed with fresh, inventive rhymes, which are filled with martial arts metaphors, pop culture references (everything from Voltron to Lucky Charms cereal commercials to Barbra Streisand’s ‘The Way We Were’), bizarre threats of violence, and a truly twisted sense of humour. Their off-kilter menace is really brought to life, however, by the eerie, lo-fi production, which helped bring the raw sound of the underground into mainstream hip-hop. Starting with a foundation of hard, gritty beats and dialogue samples from kung fu movies, RZA kept things minimalistic, but added just enough minor-key piano, strings, or muted horns to create a background ambience that works like the soundtrack to a surreal nightmare. There was nothing like it in the hip-hop world at the time, and even after years of imitation, ‘Enter the Wu-Tang’ still sounds fresh and original. Subsequent group and solo projects would refine and deepen this template, but collectively, the Wu have never been quite this tight again.


Wu-Tang Clan – Enter The Wu-Tang (Reissue LP on gold marbled vinyl) [National Album Day / LOUD 2022]


  • Bring Da Ruckus
  • Shame On A Nigga
  • Clan In Da Front
  • Wu-Tang: 7th Chamber
  • Can It Be All So Simple
  • Protect Ya Neck (Intermission)
  • Da Mystery Of Chessboxin
  • Wu-Tang Clan Ain’t Nuthing Ta F’Wit
  • C.R.E.A.M.
  • Method Man
  • Tearz
  • Wu-Tang: 7th Chamber – Part II (Conclusion)