RELEASE DATE: SUMMER 2016, PROTECT YA NECK RECORDS
WRITTEN BY MICHAEL GRANT – C.E.O. RePPiN4U
“A samurai fears not death.
Struggles to triumph over evil.
And lives for one purpose –
TO DESTROY ALL ENEMIES!”
Gamers may recognise that quote from the video game Samurai Shodown, but to Canadian MC Iron Wind it means so much more. While his inspirations – the almighty Wu-Tang Clan have based their music around Shaolin Kung Fu, Chess, comic books and the like, Iron Wind has taken the samurai code. he has done a unique thing of taking the Japanese martial arts culture and combining them into real life philosophies. Iron Wind wants to take his listeners into the samurai way of living on his sophomore album and allows you to explore The Warrior Inside: a 21-track deep feature film with the Wu-Tang sound which fans will love.
Throughout the album the majority of the tracks has wise words from a samurai master and sets the tone of the album. Iron Wind has mastered the art of merging the hip hop drum with authentic Japanese instruments better than any hip hop producer, dare I say better than the clan’s Abbott himself. It is not to be seen as an insult by any means, but Iron Wind has fully immersed himself with everything Feudal Japan.
The album boasts many highlights that will leave a lasting impression. Wu-Tang trainspotters will instantly recognize the sample used in ‘The Soldier and the Samurai’, featuring Warrzone. Both MCs mercilessly assault the track which was used by Ghostface Killah in the track ‘Purified Thoughts’. ‘The Sound Of The Battlecry’ might be the most smooth sounding track. Here, Iron Wind tells the tale of the Battle of Nagasaki, and the historical figure of Nobunaga Oda.
In ‘Feudal Lords’, Iron Wind is joined by Primordial Emcee, as they break down the life of a Daimyo, who is seen as almost god-like. Iron Wind goes into detail in the interview he had on our RePPiN4U HIP HOP SHOW earlier this year. Check it out below.
Another unique highlight on the album is the track ‘Lady Snowblood’. This is a breath of fresh air as your usual rapper may have a track or two dedicated to the ladies in a forced attempt to get a radio hit by record companies, Iron Wind chooses to base his desires on one of Japan’s most famous femme fatale.
Iron Wind also has a knack for keeping a good thing going and keeping a promise of a promise as he brings forth part 2 of ‘Bushido Blade’. Samurai storytelling at it’s best displayed here which is begging for a video to be created.
‘Knuckle Up’ is a straight no-nonsense banger which sees Iron Wind lay down his swords and opts for his lyrical fists to crush any challenger in a good ol’ fashioned rap battle. He would wear ‘Samurai Banners’ on his back if he could while performing on stage.
When you find a time to stop trashing Iggy Azalea, check for ‘Wind Chill’ which features a
real female MC in Queen Eyelysee from Berlin Germany. The problem with some hip hop heads is they allow themselves to be more concerned with what’s happening commercially while gems like this are often overlooked. Then in ‘Kill Em All’, Iron Wind, Knowledge Born & Sammo Heung go all out pillage mode. But it is Knowledge Born who steals the show here with a scathing verse about how corrupt the American government is and us as people go the wrong way about trying to get justice.
…and no, that is not the same Sammo Heung you saw in Ip Man 2 that’s on this album.
‘Iron God’ is the album’s major posse cut. Iron God, Jux Diamonds and Ern Dawgy go in over an epic backdrop reminiscent of the Clan’s ‘Heaterz’ from Wu-Tang Forever.
Iron Wind & Primordial Emcee shows creativity in the tune call ‘S-word Skills’. Not only do they quote many fighting video games such as Street Fighter & Mortal Kombat, but just like Durrty Goodz did with ‘Bout my Ps,‘ they are Bout their S’s. ‘Wind Chimes’ sees Iron Wind & KillaWynd come together in a haunting track with those same chilling chimes throughout, coming with rhymes cutting swiftly like Ryu Hayabusa.
It’s evident here that we are seeing a more focussed Iron Wind who has stuck with the concept throughout, brought production, storytelling and creativity and took his skills to another level and is on his way to becoming a Daimyo, so to speak. When you listen to the content and the interview he had with us, you will find he has a deeper understanding than we could imagine of the Japanese martial arts. In this day and age not many projects go past 15 tracks and maybe this album could have done without a few, but saying that, this is a body of work which is deserving of the Clan logo of approval. All this album needs is some videos to bring out the visions displayed in this project. If GZA’s Liquid Swords was the Wu’s winter album, consider this the summer equivalent.