- Loud Records, RCA, BMG
Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers) is the debut studio album by the American hip hop group Wu-Tang Clan, released November 9, 1993. Recording sessions for the album took place during 1992 to 1993 at Firehouse Studio in New York City, and it was mastered at The Hit Factory. The album's title originates from the martial arts film The 36th Chamber of Shaolin (1978). The group's de facto leader RZA produced the album entirely, utilizing gritty, eerie beats and a sound largely based on martial-arts movie clips and soul music samples.
The distinctive sound of Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers) created a blueprint for hardcore hip hop during the 1990s and helped return New York City hip hop to national prominence. Its sound also became greatly influential in modern hip hop production, while the group members' explicit, humorous, and free-associative lyrics have served as a template for many subsequent hip hop records. Serving as a landmark record in the era of hip hop known as the East Coast Renaissance, its influence helped lead the way for several other East Coast hip hop artists, including Nas, The Notorious B.I.G., Mobb Deep, and Jay-Z.
Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers) is widely regarded as one of the most significant albums of the 1990s, as well as one of the greatest hip hop albums ever.