Recorded between june & september 2003 and announced only one month before its release, this album seems to be the begin of a new era ; the label has changed and it's especially the first album under the name "RZA". Then, it's the first time for a Wu album that the lyrics are in the booklet, what it could be interpreted like a wish of transmission, of understand. Finally, the thanks are like a testament : he thanks Dr. Dre, Source XXL, and a strange "Sifu Shi Yam Ming" for "revealing the matrial practice to my mental principles"... (there's "the cure coming soon" too lol)
At the beginning of the album, you know what's the deal.
A soul voice give a good energy, the birth of the prince will be related. But it's not now, because RZA doesn't killed his alter-ego Bobby, who come here to put fire on "Bob n'I", produced by Josť "choco" Reynoso (the well known yeaaah).
Two tracks are dispensable : "Fast Cars" & "Drink Smoke & Fuck", where Ghostface is not as his best... RZA experiments westcoast sound on "We pop" with ODB. Song is good, but it's not the good CD for it. You can feel a Timbaland influence on "You'll Never know", which is a real hip hop song. There's some surprises like a Sega sound on "The Drop Off", where a girl is screaming of pleasure.... He jumps on each words, this is a fucking great technic !!
The streets are here too : tire screeching, helico, subway, klaxons, cop sirens, uzis....
Chi Kung & Koto Chotan are the two tracks that are directly inspired from martial arts. Thats the biggest successes of the album
The album is very bewitching (yeah i don't know if that word exists but i'm french lol) and the top is reached on "A day to God is 1.000 years", produced by the great Bronze Nazareth "I wanna stay with you forever..." Here, the lyrics are the best since "Sunshower" or "Twelve Jewelz" ; the conclusion : "Trust me, son, itís dear in between your ears, a day to God is a thousand years. Men walk around with a thousand fears. The truest joy of love bring a thousand tears. In the world of desire thereís a thousand snares"... RZA succeed in forgetting of Bobby Digital, and the album is closed on two songs which are far above the most actuals rap songs : "The Birth" and "See The Joy".
AND THERE IS THE VERSE : "Donít call me Bobby no more, man. My name is Prince Rakeem". yeaaaaaah that's what we want a new RZA album, not a Digital one.
1 Bob N'I
2 The Grunge
3 We Pop / Hood Rats ft. Ol' Dirty Bastard, Division & Madam Scheez
4 Grits ft. Masta Killa
5 Fast Cars ft. Ghostface Killah
6 Chi Kung ft. Beretta 9, Cilvaringz & Featherz
7 You'll Never Know ft. Cilvaringz
8 Drink, Smoke & Fuck
9 The Whistle ft. Prodigal Sunn & Masta Killa
10 Drop Off ft. Division
11 Wherever I go ft. Division
12 Koto Chotan ft. Masta Killa & Madam Scheez
13 A Day To God is a 1000 Years
14 Cherry Range ft. Beretta 9
15 The Birth
16 See The Joy