- The new and possibly final Wu-Tang album is more than two hours long. It features 31 tracks, all eight living MCs, most if not all Wu-Tang affiliates (Sunz of Man, Redman, Cher), sirens, bombs, samples from kung fu cinema, and original skits. And it took more than two years to produce, mostly because eighty percent of its vocals were re-recorded to capture the intensity of early Wu-Tang records. The album’s title: Once Upon a Time in Shaolin.
Here is some additional info: the CD is housed within two nickel-silver boxes that were hand-carved by a Moroccan artist and his team of ten workers over three months; there is only one physical copy of the album in existence; all digital versions have been destroyed; and bidding starts at $5 million. And we learned yesterday that Once Upon a Time in Shaolin will remain under copyright until 2103 — that’s 88 years.
So if you didn’t happen to be at MoMA PS1 last evening — among a smattering of journalists, high-bidders, and Power 105 contest winners — you will likely never experience the entire album, or even the 13-minute sample heard by Flavorwire. Unless, that is, Shaolin’s future owner decides to distribute it for free — an unlikely scenario.