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8 Diagrams

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iTunes Review

The sprawling Wu-Empire has weathered a myriad of setbacks in the past few years. The loss of Ol’ Dirty Bastard in 2004 and a series of petty internal squabbles that led to delayed album release dates and cancelled concerts led many fans to fear that the much touted 8 Diagrams, might turn out to be an ill-conceived mess, a Wu Tang album in name only. For sure 8 Diagrams is a radical departure for the Wu-Tang — the woozy psychedelic soundscapes that Rza has crafted here sound nothing like the menacing, slash and burn minimalism that characterized his early work, and even less like the throwback sounds that clan members Ghostface Killah, Raekwon, and Masta Killah have been favoring on their recent solo efforts. Tracks like the aptly titled “Unpredictable”, the dread-filled “Windmill” and the spooky “Campfire” sport eccentric drum programming, paranoid strings, and heavily phased soul-hooks that seem to leave even the Wu’s veteran MC’s sounding tentative and unsure of themselves. Thankfully, Rza’s bold new approach pays off in spades. In the face of overwhelming popular skepticism he has managed to craft a compelling new aesthetic that will, with time, prove more than worthy of being ranked amongst his very best work.

Customer Reviews

The Gods of Shaolin Are Back!!!!! 8 Diagrams

When I first heard Wu-Tang were making a new album I was skeptical but also thought they still had something up their sleeve. I was not disappointed. The Wu are back with a bangin’ album WAY better than Iron Flag!! I don’t think it’s a secret that we’re not getting another 36 Chambers but this is an album that should leave Wu fans more than satisfied. RZA creates a template with the classic creepy, off key and dense Wu-Tang sound with expansion into a broader range of music. Much of the album sounds different than what’s on the radio which is what we all loved about these dudes when they came through. The lyrics are vivid, unique but with an unmistakable more mature and slower pace, this works but I know some will hate it. Method Man kills it on every track he’s on, Deck sound as tight as ever, and the lack of Ghostface on like half the album is filled with the rest of the Clan in top form. Standout tracks include Campfire, Take it Back, Get them Out Ya way Pa, Rushing Elephants, Unpredictable, Heart Gently Weeps (Ghost KILLS IT!!) Wolves, Weak Spot, Life Changes, and 16th Chamber!! The reviews will definitely be mixed because there is a bit too much experimentation and possibly not enough rugged raw Wu. But in about 2 years this will be able to stand tall in the shadow of Wu-Tang Forever and even Enter the Wu-Tang. HATERS NEED TO SIT DOWN AND KEEP LISTENING TO THEIR SOLDIER BOY AND QUIT BAGGIN ON THE GROUP THAT PAVED THE WAY FOR HARDCORE HIP-HOP MORE THAN ANY OTHER!!! IF YOU WANT REAL HIP HOP IN ITS PUREST FORM COP THIS ALBUM!!!! WU-TANG FOREVER!!! END OF STORY!!! R.I.P. ODB


Wow. I can't believe all the hatin going on here. Just so you guys know, you DO have to be intelligent to understand the depth, creativity, & purpose behind the Wu's lyrics; whether it's in 2007 or 1993. I'm not sure why everyone was expecting a 36 Chambers (that was 14 years ago, in case you didn't know). Of course this isn't like 36 Chambers, have any of their other albums been like it? THAT'S WHAT I THOUGHT. Is that what you haters want? A crew that sounds like they're stuck in 93? Why is it that any other artist can progress, but the second Wu tries something new, it's shoved aside? I'm not saying this is a masterpiece, but it's not their worst. This is definitely a different sound, but it's a welcome change. It's called maturing, and finding a unique new way to express your lyrical & productive abilities. The beats are slower, but more consistent throughout the album. They're also a lot more serious-sounding than past albums. Not EVERY song is tight, but most of them are. This is an album you have to listen to repeatedly to appreciate. I've listened to it about 3 or 4 times now, & so far my favorite is Windmill. Other standouts: Campfire, Take It Back, Rushing Elephants, Unpredictable, Gun Will Go (nice, laid back, serious-sounding beat, Rae-Meth-MK kill it on this track), Weak Spot, & Life Changes. I could've heard more from Ghost (I think he's only on about 3 tracks), but I was glad to hear an abundance of GZA & RZA, compared to their last couple albums. RZA spits some of the best lyrics I've heard him do on a Wu album since Wu-Tang Forever. So to all you haters, give it a chance, & listen to it more than once before you tear 'em down. "If you have patience, you can conquer anything." P.S. - Just because it's different, doesn't mean it's sh**. - Peace.

Wu Tang Clan-8 Diagrams

Legendary Wu is back after a six year absence. Despite altercations within the group, Wu is back. Campfire: Some pumping bass and humming, Method Man starts things off with a solid verse. Leading into Ghost's "we gon have a ball, mine as well pick a testicle," with a good verse. 3.5/5 Take It Back: The most reminiscent track of Enter The 36 Chambers, as the simplistic drum pattern and minimal guitar throbs, back up a fast flowing record. Raekwom spits some strong bars, Deck follows suite, as Method Man & U God handle a decent hook. Ghost spits straight fire and steals the show with a great verse, U God contributing a solid verse. 4/5 Get Them Out Ya Way Pa: Ghost & Rae combine for a solid hook, as this bass guitar laced track with a western guitar feel, has Method spitting a decent verse with U God delivering some solid rhymes. 3.5/5 Rushing Elephants: Pulsating bass, unique strings and drums make a solid production that is definitely different from past work. Rae & GZA spits some solid verses, with GZA describing hip hop, "It was not a hobby, but a childhood passion, that had started in the lobby and was quickly in fashion". RZA's mush mouthed verse about Lord Of The Rings wasn't bad, as the beat goes for a higher sound when Masta Killa comes on. 3.5/5 Unpredictable: Shrieking strings jab here and there with a pain stricken guitar as Inspectah spits fire. The hook isn't too catchy and sounds very out of place. For me a little too much experimentation, track was decent. 3/5 The Heart Gently Weeps: Percussion and rhythm guitar are played by Dhani Harrison, as John Frusciante of The Red Hot Chili Peppers handles lead guitar. Raekwon's re-recorded verse sounds much better than the original leaked version. His storytelling is great, but its Ghost's storytelling flow and description that shines even more, with a little singing. Erykah Badu's light, soft, rich voice is nicely done here, as Method Man's determination and verse are well done. 4.5/5 Wolves: Eerie hums and spooky strong lines implemented here and there add a cool feel. George Clinton's hook is plain bad, as Meth continues his hot flow, God & Killa add decent performances. 3.5/5 Gun Will Go: Rae spits some vicious lyrics, Sunny's hook was mediocre, as RZA's guitar laced track is smooth. Method Man spits a solid verse, Killa only adds to the track. 3.5/5 Sunlight: An unusual and spacy cut, as RZA's rambling with words is so complex you need a dictionary. Will be hated or loved, its straight bars that was deep and interesting. 3.5/5 Stick Me For My Riches: Another sing songy hook, as the hi hats are way outta wack and unneeded. Meth has yet another good verse, Deck adds "In my city gritty blocks, little love plenty cops, you rise, many drop" describing the struggle of his hood, as RZA spits on point with a decent GZA verse. 4/5 Starter: Weak hook, as a sax line and falling strums make an unusual and typically boring production. Streetlife was mediocre, as GZA describes his lady, Inspectah spits a strong verse, with a decent God rhyme. 2.5/5 Windmill: Western feeling production with an excellent guitar line, Rae spits well, GZA spits hard with metaphors galore, as Meth's confidence is great "I'm the wittiest most unpredictable, most talented rap muthaf***er you ever listened to". Cappa, Killa & Deck all spit some decent verses. 4/5 Weak Spot: The production was decent with a string line that gets a little tiresome after a while, as RZA drops a decent verse. Rae spits energized rhymes, GZA spits some decent stuff, but overall the track just lacks energy. Its too dull and the track is mediocre. 3/5 Life Changes: RZA has a great soul sample and drum pattern that is fitting. GZA spits "I cried like a baby on the way to his closing death, hate not being there the minutes before he left, now I'm in the booth, ten feet from where he lay dead, I think about him on this track and what he might have said". Deck's pain stricken voice spits "see you were callin for help kid, shoulda woulda coulda, but at the time I was selfish". All members except Ghost pay respects, and it is a true good bye. 4.5/5 8 Diagrams is a solid album, that is much better than most rap material these days. Whether RZA was a little too experimental is up to you, this record will be loved or hated. As fans that want that hardcore Enter The 36 Chambers style, that Ghost & Rae wanted, will likely be disappointed. On a positive note, all members are in top shape, and the majority of the record isn't bad. Complaints would be too much singing, too experimentive, and only four Ghost appearances. Method Man's determination and witty lyrics shine, as Ghost flows well, along with Deck & GZA. A good comeback, not a great one as expected, but good nonetheless. Let's hope they stay together for another album. Rating 8 out of 10


Formed: 1992 in Staten Island, NY

Genre: Hip-Hop/Rap

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Emerging in 1993, when Dr. Dre's G-funk had overtaken the hip-hop world, the Staten Island, New York-based Wu-Tang Clan proved to be the most revolutionary rap group of the mid-'90s -- and only partially because of their music. Turning the standard concept of a hip-hop crew inside out, the Wu-Tang Clan were assembled as a loose congregation of nine MCs, almost as a support group. Instead of releasing one album after another, the Clan were designed to overtake the record industry in as profitable...
Full Bio
8 Diagrams, Wu-Tang Clan
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  • $6.99
  • Genres: Hip-Hop/Rap, Music, East Coast Rap, Hardcore Rap
  • Released: Dec 10, 2007
  • Parental Advisory

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