This is the tribute that the late DJ Rashad deserved. Following the Chicago producer’s death in 2013, a number of tracks and albums have surfaced and while they’re good, Afterlife seems to catch a glimpse of the light and the sensation of the heat that his music generated. All of them are collaborations (save for a free bonus track from Microglobe and Machinedrum) and despite the rather humble words of the label they do a better job than anything else of capturing a “definitive collection of DJ Rashad’s music,” or at least a slideshow of his sound.
Most of the songs here are about being young and feeling invulnerable – getting high, driving fast, getting laid and living dangerously. Everyone is Travis Bickle in the mirror or Tony Montana in his mansion (and it was after dreaming that up that I noticed there’s also, helpfully, a song here called “Tony Montana”.) But most of all, they bang.
I remember Farley – as the elder statesman – once telling me a story that he said summed up the “lovable” character of another Chicago producer gone too soon, the late Armando Gallop. “You know,” he said, “people always say that they want to work with you, that you should work together, but they never do. They never do. Armando wanted to work with everyone.” The joy for Armando was in making the tracks and then playing the tracks, not in selling the tracks or telling people you made the tracks. Apparently, Rashad was the same way. Many of these are what DJ Deeon said about Ghetto House – fun, party music. But on “Lost Worlds” – a collaboration with Traxman – Rashad & Traxman really reach another level.
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