Friday, June 13, 2008

The RZA Review

I had the distinct pleasure last night to witness the greatness that is the RZA. To start off with, I was confused about who exactly the opening group was. I do know, meh, they weren’t that great. To me, it was just three dudes rhyming over popular beats. (Including “Nothin’ But a “G” Thang) But, they gave it their all, and as one of the guys told the crowd “He is Wu-Tang.”

The second group, Stone Mecca, was an excellent R&B band. They have a very 70’s funk/R&B feel that doesn’t feel dated, tired or worn out. I was very impressed by the way they worked the crowd and kicked out the jams.

While I was outside on the patio, by the rail, smoking, waiting for the show to start I noticed the RZA exit his tour bus and enter the venue. The show was about to start so it was time to head inside. I wasn’t quite sure what the RZA’s show was going to be like, but, I was beyond impressed with his show. In lieu of working with a solitary DJ, the RZA was backed by the top-notch Stone Mecca. From the beginning to the end, the RZA had the very active crowd eating out of his hand. To me, if the crowd sucks and isn’t into the show, then the show kinda sucks. But, that wasn’t the case last night.

Stone Mecca had heads bobbin’ all night long with their crack beats and booming bass. Many a concert goer had their hands in the air making the Wu “W.” I would say the first 1/3 of the show was dedicated solely to tracks off the new RZA/Bobby Digital album Digi Snacks (Yap!). If they album sounds anywhere near as good as it did live, then it should be an impressive album.

I was surprised by RZAs showmanship, James Brown ain’t got nothin’ on the RZArecta. Not only is he a top notch showman, but he was one of the best front men I’ve seen in quite a while. And the RZA worked the crowd all night long. His call and responses with the crowd were amazing, the crowd kept up with every word and knew almost intuitively when and when it was time for their response.

All the Bobby Digital tracks were superb, but, the true highlights of the night were the raucous versions of Wu classics “Wu-Tang Clan Ain’t Nothin’ To Fuck With,” “CREAM” and the RZAs version of ODBs “Shimmy Shimmy Ya.” The crowd went absolutely bananas for these three songs. Honestly, I haven’t seen anything more amazing as 200 people bouncing up and down chanting “WU-TANG CLAN AIN’T NOTHIN’ TO FUCK WITH!!”

So, Digi Snacks (Yap!) is out on June 24. You can pre-order it here.

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