Liquid Swords [Chess Box]

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Steve Huey
Often acclaimed as the best Wu-Tang solo project of all, Liquid Swords cemented the Genius/GZA's reputation as the best pure lyricist in the group -- and one of the best of the '90s. Rich in allusions and images, his cerebral, easy-flowing rhymes are perhaps the subtlest and most nuanced of any Wu MC, as underscored by his smooth, low-key delivery. The Genius' eerie calm is a great match for RZA's atmospheric production, which is tremendously effective in this context; the kung fu dialogue here is among the creepiest he's put on record, and he experiments quite a bit with stranger sounds and more layered tracks. Not only is RZA in top form, but every Clan member makes at ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Steve Huey
Often acclaimed as the best Wu-Tang solo project of all, Liquid Swords cemented the Genius/GZA's reputation as the best pure lyricist in the group -- and one of the best of the '90s. Rich in allusions and images, his cerebral, easy-flowing rhymes are perhaps the subtlest and most nuanced of any Wu MC, as underscored by his smooth, low-key delivery. The Genius' eerie calm is a great match for RZA's atmospheric production, which is tremendously effective in this context; the kung fu dialogue here is among the creepiest he's put on record, and he experiments quite a bit with stranger sounds and more layered tracks. Not only is RZA in top form, but every Clan member makes at least one appearance on the album, making it all the more impressive that Liquid Swords clearly remains the Genius' showcase throughout. All of his collaborators shape themselves to his quietly intimidating style, giving Liquid Swords a strongly consistent tone and making it an album that gradually slithers its way under your skin. Mixing gritty story-songs and battle rhymes built on elaborate metaphors martial arts and chess are two favorites, the Genius brings his lyrical prowess to the forefront of every track, leaving no doubt about how he earned his nickname. Creepily understated tracks like "Liquid Swords," "Cold World," "Investigative Reports," and "I Gotcha Back" are the album's bread and butter, but there's the occasional lighter moment "Labels" incorporates the names of as many record companies as possible and spiritual digression "Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth". Overall, though, Liquid Swords is possibly the most unsettling album in the Wu canon even ahead of Ol' Dirty Bastard, and it ranks with Enter the Wu-Tang 36 Chambers and Raekwon's Only Built 4 Cuban Linx as one of the group's undisputed classics. [Get On Down's 2012 "Chess Box" edition was packaged in a small box with inner chess-board print and chess pieces, along with liner notes and a second disc containing instrumental mixes.]
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 7/24/2012
  • Label: Get On Down
  • UPC: 664425404326
  • Catalog Number: 54043
  • Sales rank: 37,064

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Duel of the Iron Mic - Rolly Fingers AKA Inspector Deck (4:30)
  2. 2 Living In the World Today (4:06)
  3. 3 Gold (4:23)
  4. 4 Cold World - Rolly Fingers AKA Inspector Deck (3:57)
  5. 5 Labels (5:30)
  6. 6 4th Chamber - Ghostface Killah aka Tony Starks (2:54)
  7. 7 Shadowboxin' - Method Man AKA Johnny Blaze (4:37)
  8. 8 Hell's Wind Staff - Masta Killer (3:29)
  9. 9 Killah Hills 10304 (5:08)
  10. 10 Investigative Reports - Lucky Hands AKA U-God (3:49)
  11. 11 Swordsman - Killah Priest (3:20)
  12. 12 I Gotcha Back (5:01)
  13. 13 Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth - Killah Priest (4:30)
Disc 2
  1. 1 Liquid Swords (3:28)
  2. 2 Duel of the Iron Mic - Rolly Fingers AKA Inspector Deck (3:44)
  3. 3 Living In the World Today (4:24)
  4. 4 Gold (4:17)
  5. 5 Cold World - Rolly Fingers AKA Inspector Deck (5:20)
  6. 6 Labels (3:08)
  7. 7 4th Chamber - Ghostface Killah aka Tony Starks (4:17)
  8. 8 Shadowboxin' - Method Man AKA Johnny Blaze (3:29)
  9. 9 Killah Hills 10304 (4:24)
  10. 10 Investigative Reports - Lucky Hands AKA U-God (4:09)
  11. 11 I Gotcha Back (4:08)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
GZA Primary Artist, Indexed Contributor
Technical Credits
GZA Liner Notes
RZA Producer, Liner Notes
Tom Coyne Mastering
Trevor Gendron Art Direction, Layout
E. Debarge Composer
R. Diggs Composer
G. Grice Composer
D. Coles Composer
L. Hawkins Composer
4th Disciple Producer
M. Samps Mastering
Robert "Sleezy Trees" Reilly Marketing, Promoter
Chris Faraone Liner Notes
Geoffrey L. Garfield Management
Cyril Gittens Art Direction
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