Wednesday, May 27, 2009

El Michels Affair - Enter the 37th Chamber

Alright, enough of the electrohippy nonsense, lets get back to hiphop. I've posted about El Michels Affair before here - they are an instrumental funk band from Brooklyn with a very laidback, Sean Connery-era Bond film kind of vibe. So, given that, an album of Wu Tang covers is a bit of a weird choice. If you are, like me, a Wu Tang enthusiast, I should tell you up front that the weirdness doesn't really go away...I wouldn't take one of these covers over the RZA originals they mean to imitate. That being said, the direction that the band takes the songs in approaches a similar level of badassitude.

Even though they are almost note-for-note copies of the original beats, the atmosphere is distinctly the band's own, turning the thump of "C.R.E.A.M." into a bluesy strut, or "Can It All Be So Simple" into a breezy jam that wouldn't be out of place in a Caribbean tourism video from the 60s. Ironically, this adaptation might actually make this collection better for people who've never heard the Wu before, and can just appreciate this as dope music. Whatever, I'm just waiting for some DJ to drop the acapellas over these so they'll feel whole again - get on it internet.