Houston is a long way from the slums of Shaolin, but Raekwon—even after some 17 plus years in the game—still played to a devoted flock of Timberland-booted fans at Warehouse Live on Saturday night (June 19).

The Chef entered the stage with “C.R.E.A.M.” and “Can It Be All So Simple," two classic tracks from the Wu-Tang Clan’s game-changing debut, Enter the 36 Chambers.

The rap vet then offered up “Ice Cream” from his certified classic LP, Only Built 4 Cuban Linx… before launching into tracks like "House of Flying Daggers,” “Surgical Gloves” and “Gihad” from his long-delayed follow-up, 2009’s Only Built 4 Cuban Linx…Pt. 2.

The portly Staten Island-bred MC’s voice started to crackle, as he had to compensate for what he told the audience was the soundman’s ineptitude, but after calling him out on numerous occasions, Rae soldiered on.

Shallah then took a break in the action to honor his fallen friend and one of the founding members of the Wu, Ol’ Dirty Bastard, with words of praise and the song he recorded to pay homage, “Ason Jones.” The DJ followed up Rae’s tribute with one of his own, rocking the crowd with Russell Jones’ biggest hits, “Shimmy Shimmy Ya” and “Brooklyn Zoo,” while urging the spectators to follow in the chant of “RIP…ODB!”

Lex Diamonds then finished up his set with performances of both of the Dr. Dre-produced tracks on his recent album, “About Me” and “Catalina.” Before exiting stage right, Rae took it back to the beginning by explaining that the call, “Suuuuuu!” meant that the police had been spotted and rapped his and ODB’s verses on WTC’s “Protect Ya Neck.”

Next month the entire Clan will be reuniting to perform their first album, Enter the 36 Chambers on the Rock the Bells tour. Fans can visit rockthebells.net concert dates and more info. —Maurice Bobb

Turn to page two to see photos from the show, courtesy of Xphaqtor