Photo Credit: Raymond Flotat
Banks & Steelz, the ongoing collaboration between Wu-Tang Clan’s RZA and Interpol’s Paul Banks, have premiered the eponymous track from upcoming album Anything Is Words. The duo previously shared singles “Giant”, “Love + War”, “Speedway Sonora”, and “Sword in the Stone”, and will release their new LP on August 26.
Banks & Steelz most recent single, “Sword in the Stone” seemed a stylistic breakthrough for the duo. Coherent, hip-hop oriented production accompanied strong veteran bars from RZA and featured artist Kool Keith.
In direct contrast, “Anything Is Words” is marred by disturbing incoherence and breaks a momentum built by previously built singles. RZA and Banks seemingly produce their own segments seperately, trading bars over completely different productions. RZA sounds vacant and lethargic, spitting over weak synth driven beats, while Banks croons meekly over Interpol-lite instrumentation. “Anything Is Words” plays into rap-rock’s worst tendencies, somehow sounding like a cross between staid Young the Giant-esque alternative rock and RZA’s oft-maligned Bobby Digital period.
Anything Is Words marks RZA’s first full-length vocal LP since 2008’s Digi Snacks. He has also executively produced six albums since 2008, and has provided guest verses and production on numerous other projects. Banks, meanwhile, last released new music on Interpol’s 2014 LP, El Pintor.