Rocks Off can't rightfully remember the last time the whole Wu-Tang Clan was ever in Houston, if they ever have been. For some reason, we keep wanting to think they came once with Rage Against The Machine around 1997. In 2007, they came to Dallas on the Rock The Bells summer tour with Nas, Talib Kweli and UGK.
The Houston date on that tour, set for August 7 at Reliant Park, but was canceled due to low ticket sales, as "around only 1,000" were sold for the stop. Other stops on the tour included Rage and Public Enemy, but in true H-Town fashion, we got shafted.
We asked Rocks Off's own Shea Serrano what we needed to know about the Wu, above and beyond everything we have learned the past 17 years since we discovered a cassette of Enter the 36 Chambers in 5th grade. Here's what he sent us:
- GZA's Liquid Swords is the best solo Wu album, and RZA is excellent, but Ghostface Killah is everyone's secret favorite Wu-Tanger.
- The guy that sings the chrous on RZA's "Grits" always almost makes me cry when I see him sing it.
- Kanye's album is light years ahead of Slim's.
- Method Man served admirably on The Wire. He was killed in the final season by Slim Charles after he set up Prop Joe to be murdered.
Reference all four of those in your review, sprinkled in among the typical Craigisms, and you'll be golden, sir.
So yeah, we know plenty about Wu-Tang, aside from Mr. Serrano's cheat sheet. Our favorite things about the group, other than giving the world Ol' Dirty Bastard, Method Man and popularizing Kung-Fu movies, is the use of pop-culture references in their lyrics. We collected some of our favorite lines over five albums and a couple of mixtapes.
"Bring Da Ruckus"
"I blow sparks like Waco, Texas"
"Bust this, I'm kickin like Seagal, Out for Justice"
"Don't eat Skippy, Jif or Peter Pan Peanut butter, cause I'm not butter In fact I snap back like a rubber band, I be Sam Sam I am And I don't eat green eggs and ham"
"Da Mystery of Chessboxin'"
"My hip-hop will rock and shock the nation like the Emancipation Proclamation"
"Protect Ya Neck"
"You battle, you're saying 'Goodbye' like Tevin Campbell Roughneck, Inspector Deck's on the set The rebel, I make more noise than heavy metal"
"Wu-Tang Clan Ain't Nuthin' To Fuck Wit"
"I be tossing, enforcing, my style is awesome I'm causing more family feuds than Richard Dawson"
"Transform into the Ghost Rider, a six-pack and A Streetcar Named Desire, who got my back?"
"Pocket full of shells out the sky, golden arms Tune spit the shitty Mortal Kombat sound"
"Rap vandals, stomp your ass like Randall McDaniel"
"With root beer thoughts, here's a tennis court for your birthday, the Babyface of rap politic with Sade Avenging eagle crooks rock the "W" and "Spiegel" books"
"I don't walk, I get carried Gold and platinum Frisbees on my wall, lookin properly but come-ly, I U.F.O. you Wright Brothers"
"Talk strange like Bjork, great hero Jim Thorpe"
"We like Dorothy Hamill on ice We in your hood we might circle, hats down low in the Range Switch lanes, change my tire, peel out"
"The secret agent that Maxwell and Get Smart, through entertainment Welcome to The Killing Fields, with Johnny Dangerous Headbanger boogie niggaz goin thru changes"
"It glows coffin, Wu storming like the light brigade ride the wave like Frankie Avalon As I decipher AIDS crime pays"
"If I find a wack ID I sell you one Doc and Hot Nick, Inspectah My lecture's like Hannibal Lecters' Where's the ketchup? Don't speak on it, shut ya trap"
"Uzi (Pinky Ring)"
"It's that pinky ring shit, the legend of masked kid Shoot out the speakers when my guns get Jurassic Superbad, who am I? Dolemite classic The vandal's back, hands on Angela Bassett"
"They call him desk duty, Robocop Younger dudes call him Freddy Krugs from the way he walk on the block"
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"I'm tryin to bring the "Sexy Back" with Timbaland and Timberlake Spittin like a calico, kush from a Cali hoe Tell that joker "tally ho", put shots in that Denali yo"
"Sound the Horns"
"Niggas ain't ready, I turn out your lights like Teddy Roll like dice in the casino Known to spit lava, Heat like DeNiro and Pacino"