Music Things: El Michels Affair

Enter the 37th Chamber

Much like the original take, you cannot help but nod your head to El Michel Affair’s jazzy funk instrumental version of C.R.E.A.M. I will be the first to say I am not usually interested in remakes of time-tested classics. The eight per cent of times it goes right, it’s amazing. All the rest is heart breaking- fortunately for me, 37th Chamber belongs to the former category….

I am a massive fan of the original Enter the 36 Chambers (strangely the only Wu-Tang album I listen to) so I could easily be writing a very different review but this is brilliant. The smoothness of the music will leave you wondering where you heard the melodies before – until your memory has you loudly reciting “Started out on the island, aka Shaolin!” along to trumpets and soft, wistful keyboard riffs. Obviously this collection is not better than the original- nothing beats ODB’s unnecessary quivers or Raekwon’s expertly threatening story telling. 37th Chamber is enchanting none the less.

El Michels Affair are an NYC band who have released two other albums Sounding Out The City and Loose Change (added to my Spotify list). They have also performed with Raekwon himself in the past.

Earlier album: Sounding Out The City


Enter the 37th Chamber has been around for a good while but I only came across these instrumentals recently while watching Chef on Netflix. Netflix will never stop distracting me – It’s a very entertaining film by the way, watch it. Join my procrastination support group afterwards.

5 tracks

  1. C.R.E.A.M
  2. Cherchez La Ghost (not actually on 36 Chambers originally)
  3. Can It All be So Simple
  4. Shimmy Shimmy Ya
  5. Mystery of Chessboxin’


Similar(ish) artists: Hypnotic Brass Ensemble

Listen While: Driving, cooking, generally trying to be a full adult


Photo credits: Cover pic: from turntablelab;


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