10 Reasons Why The Wu-Tang Clan's "The Heart Gently Weeps" Video Might Be Their Worst Ever
1. Who made the decision to have an Asian Bjork clone perform a feather dance for one of the video's main plot threads? Okay fine, we all know the answer was Rza, but really, was Erykah Badu that busy taking trips to Israel with Jay Electronica that Bobby couldn't convince her to show up for a couple hours to lip-sync the hook? In other news, there is an 82 percent shot of Baduian/Black Israelite influence yielding an Electronica song entitled "Shalom Bitches and Drugs."
2. Why is Gza listening to wire-taps for the duration of the video? Isn't he supposed to be doing all sorts of crazy liquid sword-type killings or at least playing chess? Did someone brain-wash him into believing that he's a War II Navajo from the film, Windtalkers. And by someone, I naturally mean the Rza.
3. Wu videos have side-stepped having nothing to do with the song itself. Shit, the "Triumph" video plot line barely extended past "New York City is Getting Invaded by Wu Killa Bees," but it remains the most awesomest video in the history of awesomeness. Yet "The Heart Gently Weeps" is a hackneyed re-hash of Kill Bill. I know Tarantino and Rza are really really into double-dating (no, Quentin, you drive this time, I drove last time), but this just as predictable and infinitely less entertaining than Rick Ross jumping off a bridge for getting a speeding infraction.
You Don't Even Want to Know What Happens When They Pull Him Over For Running a Red Light
4. It's a "Wu-Tang" video without Wu-Tang. Yeah, it has Gza and Rza but let's be honest, the fact that Rza wouldn't even let U-God and Masta Killa have roles as secret agent extras shows a lot about the Clan's state of the affairs. Sure, Rza apparently showed up last night at the Fillmore, but that's been his only appearance on The 8 Diagrams tour, a trek in which they played no actual 8 Diagrams songs. More importantly, without the Rza's beneficence how will U-God pay pay his DSL bills? That connection to his Myspace account isn't paying for itself and there's only so long that they'll let you stay at Starbucks.
5. The Rza seems to be entering the late-period, "Spruce Moose" stage of his career. Not to say that he won't make interesting, bat-shit insane, occasionally great music. He has too much talent not to. But weird eccentric geniuses don't get saner with old age, especially not when they're sporting pony-tails that make them look like a bizarre hybrid between Wyclef Jean, Bizzy Bone and Crisp from Kindergarten Cop.
6. Judging from this video, the Rza is a bigger fan of Kabuki than he is of hip-hop. I don't need "punch-you-in your face third rail rap" but fuck, I don't need Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragging either. This is just corny.
Cullen Crisp: Protect Ya' Neck
7. More troubling than the video's lack of originality is the egocentricity inherent in Rza's decision to essentially make a tribute to his two greatest loves: Asian cinema and himself. "While the Heart Gently Weeps" actually features a gripping lyrical saga about the nephew of an OD victim trying to exact revenge on Ghostface for selling his uncle smack, Rza eschews that for four minutes of crane-dancing and shameless self-mythologizing. This is a shame; the comic potential of Ghost spilling milk on his Wallabees at Pathmark is incalculable.
8. There's something stupid about wasting money on a video four months after people stopped caring about a record that no one bought in the first place. Even dumber is the fact that this could have been a great video. It has a compelling narrative to hang a plot on, potential cameos from Badu and John Frusciante,* and it had crazy buzz months ago as the first song to ever "sample" the Beatles. Of course, those claims turned out to be false. This is officially, an "interpolation," but one would think that the fact that Rza let Dhani Harrison play on it would've at least gotten him to buy 10,000 copies with all that George Harrison money he's got lying around.
9. It's disturbing that the Rza is arrogant enough to try to bill this as "Wu-Tang Clan." Last time, I checked the Diggs and Grice families did not constitute Wu-Tang. I'd been inclined to take the Rza's side in the mud-slinging that went on last year around the release of 8 Diagrams, but this video is a glimpse that maybe Bobby Steels might actually be pretty out of his mind. The fact that he's titling his new album, Digi Snax and telling reporters that it's just like Scooby Snacks, but for music, isn't helping matters either.
10. The fact that after being a Wu fanboy for the last decade and a half, it's still hard to acknowledge this might actually be it for the clan. That is, unless they decide to put artistic concerns over personal ones, a difficult prospect to believe in for a group whose biggest hook went, "Cash Rules Everything Around Me."
* Not to mention Sunz of Man and Killa Army. Throw those guys a friggin' bone, Rza.
Get the Music Newsletter
Keep your thumb on the local music scene with music features, additional online music listings and show picks. We'll also send special ticket offers and music promotions available only to our Music Newsletter subscribers.