June 2, 2018
When Aristotle coined the phrase that a collective is bigger than the sum of its individual constituents to signify the concept of synergy, he formulated something that become particularly true for the entity known as Wu Tang Clan. Despite each individual member always having their own distinctive thing going, their contribution was alchemically channeled to something that has never been rivaled.
Raekwon being one of them, has established himself firmly as a solo artist on the firmament of hip hop classics with his debut Only Built 4 Cuban Linx, an album that has stood the test of time.
Twenty-three years and six albums on, The Wild, his most recent emission marks the first one without any collaboration of fellow Wu Tang Clan members.
An album that exemplifies the strengths of Raekwon, i.e. puns and accomplished, nimble, flex rhyme skills and wordplays not only laced with his trademark braggadocio but also infused with a before unheard, mature and reflective angle.
Never one to not seize an opportunity to relay a dramatic tale with accurate analogies, incarnating in a live environment, Raekwon packs two decades of gritty storytelling material into a tight set based on solid foundation of invigorating instrumental, paying homage to his roots via his enchanting verbal expression as well as effortlessly displaying his lyrical skills’ relevance in the present day.
The fact that amongst the wild characters that have over the last decade waved the Wu Tang pom poms on stage, Raekwon has been somewhat the reliable backbone with tonight’s set being testament to his staying power.
Photo from artist website