This year, Wu-Tang Clan are celebrating the 25th anniversary of their landmark debut album, Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers). Not only did the rap collective’s surviving members reunite to perform on Jimmy Kimmel! in October, but last month they even had a day dedicated to them in their hometown of Staten Island.
To further commemorate (36 Chambers), Wu-Tang’s Raekwon, RZA, Inspectah Deck, Cappadonna, Masta Killa, and U-God recently filmed an extended, career-spanning session for NPR’s Tiny Desk Concert series. The 20-minute set kicked off with Wu-Tang Forever cut “Triumph” before eventually morphing into part medley, part epic and impromptu cypher.
(Read: The 25 Greatest Hip-Hop Debut Albums of All Time)
In addition to (36 Chambers) selections, Wu-Tang spit solo offerings, such as a taste of Raekwon’s classic 1995 album, Only Built 4 Cuban Linx. The off-the-cuff moments proved to be some of the best, however, like when RZA swapped out explicit lyrics from “Duck Seazon” to instead drop references to the #MeToo movement. After performing their staple “C.R.E.A.M.”, RZA again slipped in an unexpected freestyle, reading its lyrics off his phone.
The group was joined by string musicians from The Green Project and Young Dirty Bastard, son of original member Ol’ Dirty Bastard.
Watch the whole Tiny Desk Concert below.
Yesterday, Wu-Tang announced reunion shows for 2019. They’re set to perform in Philadelphia on January 25th, followed by a New York City gig the next day.