Regardless of cinematically quality, this movie will have an amazing soundtrack.
RZA’s directorial debut, The Man with the Iron Fists, looks to be cut from the same cloth as Tarrantino’s over-the-top films, specifically the kung fu/spaghetti western stylings of Kill Bill. Which probably explains why Tarrantino added his name to the never-too-attached phrase of “presented by.”
The film looks like it will be outrageously fun, or a complete chaotic disasterpiece. But I think RZA and writing partner Eli Roth are too smart and had too much fun making this to have it be a dud. But I digress from the usual Monday fodder.
Look at how much of the trailer is dedicated to the music. Obviously RZA as a lead character will draw some connection, but a much subtler one is how Wu-Tang’s founding father modeled Russell Crowe’s character after Ol’ Dirty Bastard.
We’re also hit with the text card of “Seven Clans,” which may be a nod to RZA’s Wu-Tang brethren who will appear in the OST. Then the trailer picks up and the Travis Barker, RZA, Raekwon, and Tom Morello (Rage Against the Machine) collaborative “Carry It” jumps in and makes it clear: The Man with the Iron Fists will be all about outlandish action sequences set to really good, new music.
The icing on the cake here is that the trailer ends with a dedication to the artists getting involved, flaunting that the film will have “new music from” Kanye West, The Black Keys, The Wu-Tang Clan, Wiz Khalifa, and RZA himself. It leaves out some of hip-hop’s old a new artists such as Freddie Gibbs, Pusha T, Talib Kweli, Kool G Rap, M.O.P., and Pharoahe Monch.
The first official song to appear from the soundtrack was “Tick Tock” (no, not “Tik Tok”) by Pusha T, Raekwon, and Joell Ortiz. Before you even press play, this track is already interesting. Each of the three musicians comes from a different tight-knit group of artists. Raekwon is known as a member of Wu-Tang, while Pusha T represents G.O.O.D. music (and Clipse) and Joell Ortiz hails from the Slaughterhouse clique, all three distinguished groups.
Then of course, you get to the song, which one can imagine as a song for a tense scene. The ever-present ticking in the song matched with the kung fu-esque string play seems perfect for RZA’s joint, and serves as a great preview.
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If you want to talk about interesting collaborations, go no further than “Black Out” by Ghostface Killah, M.O.P., and Pharoahe Monch. The three artists here can really project their voices on a song, especially M.O.P. and Ghostface Killah. Having two rather loud spitters on the track certainly makes this song the type of adrenaline pumping material that would heighten the action of The Man with the Iron Fists. Aside from the overall boisterous quality of the song, I really like Pharoahe Monch’s appearance on the track, he’s always been a fantastic lyricist with a distinct, clear voice. To see him collaborate with someone like Ghostface is always a good thing.
There are other songs floating around, the Method Man/Freddie Gibbs/Streetlife tune “Built For This,” which, though not an official release, sounds really awesome. Others include what seems to be an unfinished version of “Blowin’ in the Wind” since the Flatbush Zombies do not appear on the song yet.
RZA’s recently launched “The Man with the Iron Fists Tour” should continue to build the release of the soundtrack (October 23) while past collabs between The Black Keys, RZA, and Pharoahe Monch can leave hip-hop heads guessing what’s to come.