The saga of the forthcoming Wu-Tang Clan reunion record A Better Tomorrow has been a long and sad one. RZA has spoken openly about the difficulty of getting all nine members back together and on the same page and about his disappointment that it wasn’t ready in time for the 20th anniversary of the group’s world-changing debut Enter The Wu-Tang (36 Chambers). For a while there, it looked like the album would never come out. But last night, we got a new single from the Wu, and now we’re hearing that the album is done, that it’s already up for pre-order. But “Keep Watch,” that first single, is far from peak-capacity Wu-Tang. It’s great to hear Method Man, Inspectah Deck, Cappadonna, and GZA all on one track at the same time, and they all get off some nice lines. (Deck rapping in French!) But the beat, from longtime Wu DJ Mathematics, is a bit antiseptic and low-energy, and the R&B hook, from singer Nathaniel, feels entirely unnecessary. If this is the best first track they can offer from A Better Tomorrow, maybe we should keep expectations low. But you can make up your own mind about it; the song is below.
The “Keep Watch” single is up for sale now.