It's no wonder that self-proclaimed experts of torture (motherfucker) have mastered the art of doling out "Severe Punishment." On June 3rd, 1997, the Wu-Tang Clan came through to deliver their sophomore project, the ambitious and notably darker Wu-Tang Forever, a double-album lined from top to bottom with hits. Though some initially expressed concern over the length, the project has aged like fine wine, a relic of New York's musical prime. Songs like "Triumph" have become instilled within the hip-hop canon, and rightfully so, but there are many underrated gems to be found. Case in point, the brilliant menace of "Severe Punishment," a midway posse cut featuring U-God, GZA, Raekwon, RZA, and Masta Killa.
Taking to an absolutely filthy bassline from Bobby Digital, each rapper establishes themselves with stellar verses, with U-God setting the tone with a noteworthy opening contribution "Tap dance swelling Hemingway novel model," he spits, in cryptic fashion. "For a breather, dirty reefer hide your bottle." Such is the brilliance of the Wu-Tang dialect; one must always look beyond the surface to unpack the true meaning. Check this one out, and pay homage to one of -if not the- greatest collective of all time.
This Wu shit be hard to kill and full blown
Rhymes filtered through the net before words hit the chrome
Pro Tools editing tracks that's rough
Cause a jam without a live MC isn't enough
So we attack this and grab all within reach
Throw a scrap back to n****as perfect your own speech