RZA: ‘Liquid Swords’ is for New Yorkers in the shivering cold

If you live in New York City (or, for that matter, anywhere in the U.S. other than Florida) and set foot outside your apartment this week, you probably noticed it’s a bit brisk. A simple three-block trek from your door to the subway station is painful. Hefting two big bags of groceries home? Forget it.

Fortunately, the RZA has a razor-sharp suggestion to battle the elements while running from the cops, busting off shots, deep on the block, picking up dry cleaning, what-have-you. The all-wise leader of the Wu-Tang Clan had NYC’s bitter cold in mind during the production of two of the finest solo albums to come out of a founding Wu member, or anyone in hip-hop for that matter.

From RZA’s 2005 paperback “The Wu-Tang Manual”:

I used to make certain albums hoping they’d come out in winter — like “[Return to the] 36 Chambers” or “Liquid Swords.” The only album I waned to come out in the summer was “[Only Built 4] Cuban Linx.” It’s like directing, and I directed those first ones to have a wintertime vibe. It’s more inside-your-car, more intimate with the music. Whereas in the summer, it’s more out in the world with it. So with “Cuban Linx” it’s more an out-in-the-world type of album, “Liquid Swords,” “36 Chambers” — those are winter-time, up-in-your-face joints. You really feel it. Songs like “Cold World” with the wind blowing, I want people to be in their cars, just … shivering.

New York is a tough place in the winter. Everybody’s got big jackets, you don’t know what kind of gun they’re carrying underneath … That’s how it is with me making music. I’m creating a whole atmosphere, a whole world.

I’m plugging this one into iTunes before going to the dentist today:

source: The Wu-Tang Manual