By Kevin Rutherford
The status of Wu-Tang Clan‘s A Better Tomorrow may be in limbo, but the group’s other 2014 release, Once Upon a Time in Shaolin, appears to be right on track, with a preview clip released today.
A teaser from the one-of-a-kind album, for which only one copy has been made, comes from Forbes, which sent a reporter to preview the album in person. An accompanying video includes a 51-second clip of material from the record.
The music features a driving beat over which Ghostface Killah raps, while a belting female voice twists in and out of the rhyme in the background. As Pitchfork points out, the female vocal has striking similarities to that of Cher, something backed up by the Forbes writer in the video as the producer, Tarik “Clivaringz” Azzougarh, laughs forebodingly.
The video also gives another look into the packaging for the album, which includes a golden box laid inside an even larger black one, the Wu-Tang logo embellishing its front. The record will eventually be sold to the highest bidder, who could put down more than $1 million for the rare release.
But Once Upon a Time in Shaolin is the only recent Wu-Tang release without an air of drama surrounding it. The rap act’s standard album, A Better Tomorrow, has been teased for months but is stuck in an unreleased state due to, according to RZA, Raekwon’s insistence that he’s currently “on strike” from Wu-Tang releases. If Raekwon doesn’t join in, the album may be shelved indefinitely.