Banks & Steelz – “Speedway Sonora”

A few years ago, Wu-Tang Clan leader and Atari enthusiast RZA mentioned that he was working on a project with Interpol’s Paul Banks, a collaboration that’s now officially got both a band name (Banks & Steelz) and an album title (Anything But Words). We’re only about a month away from hearing the joint LP in its entirety, and today we get our third official sample in the form of “Speedway Sonora.” Following previously released singles “Love + War” and “Giant,” “Speedway Sonora” doesn’t deviate from the duo’s now signature approach, pairing RZA at his most livid against Banks’ vivid wail.

This project is shaping up to be something sonically expansive. Where “Love + War” made use of crestfallen horns and choppy Latin guitars, “Giant” opted instead for shaky drums and arpeggiator shimmers. Meanwhile “Speedway Sonora” sounds the most like latter-day Interpol, moody with a magical after-taste, balancing scratchy percussion with swerving licks. RZA matches the atmosphere with an opening verse that is somehow simultaneously threatening and as colorful as a children’s book: “I shot the wolf with a silver bullet/ You didn’t think that I would pull it…The prince and the pauper, they both got vanquished.” Listen below.

Anything But Words is out 8/26 on Warner Bros. Pre-order it here.