Thursday, December 5, 2013

Raekwon Learns New Battle Lessons - Fencing

Raekwon Learns New Battle Lessons - Premiere
by John Gentile

Rapper takes up fencing to sharpen his game

While working on his upcoming album Fly International Luxurious Art, Wu-Tang Clan's Raekwon brought world fencing champion Miles Chamely-Watson into the studio to discuss battle tactics. In this video documenting the meeting, Raekwon begins by comparing a rapper's tongue to a fencer's sword. Chamely-Watson responds by explaining how Wu-Tang Clan was important to him when he emigrated to America, and then gives Raekwon a fencing lesson.

Raekwon has felt constrained by outside expectations throughout his career, as he admits to Rolling Stone. "When you make classic albums, everything must be 100 percent perfect all the time in people's eyes," he says. "It's a pedestal that I deal with a lot, which is full of complications. I choose to be unanimous as a writer. We all know the Chef has many recipes. I keep rising to the occasion based on that thought. My music now has to be served to everyone. Everybody has to eats now!"

If you listen closely to the end of the video, you can catch a sneak peek of a track off Raekwon's new album, "Sound Boy Kill It." The track will premiere in full tomorrow at Rolling Stone and be available on iTunes on December 10th. Fly International Luxurious Art is expected to be released in early 2014.

"Sound Boy Kill It" is Raekwon's love letter to the Jamaican dancehall. A snapping, percussive beat propels the track, while the Wu-Tang Clan mainstay details his club adventures with a hard-hitting but controlled style, coated with his thick Staten Island accent. R&B singer Melanie Fiona supplies the refrain, saluting the DJ by coping a slight Irie accent. Fittingly, Jamaican dancehall staple Assassin (who appeared on Kanye West's Yeezus earlier this year) closes the song with his explosive, barking delivery.

"Dancehall is where we pay homage to the DJ," Raekwon tells Rolling Stone. "The DJ is the most important piece in the club. He's in the middle of the ring. There is an art form to the sound clash, which inspired me. And I really love West Indian culture and music, so it only made sense to pay respect." "Sound Boy Kill It" drops December 10th on iTunes. Fly International Luxurious Art, Raekwon's aniticpated sixth solo LP, is due in January 2014.

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