Review: If there's any form of Western dance music that even comes close to the frenetic pace of South Africa's Shangaan scene, then it's the Chicago juke and footwork scene, making Honest Jon's decision to enlist juke producers DJ Rashad & DJ Spinn and RP Boo for their latest instalment in their ongoing Shangaan Electro remix project so inspired. Rashad & Spinn's remix of the Tshetsha Boys takes a deep 303 bassline and frenetic hi-hats and combines them with the original vocals looped endlessly, with a dystopian synth melody. RP Boo's remix meanwhile is more threadbare, with loose rhythms that sound like they're about to spin out of control; but it's his decision to combine militant western spoken word with the African vocal samples that proves inspired, highlighting the common blood running through both genres.
Review: Hyperdub kick off the vinyl side to their ten-year celebrations with this weighty four-tracker from some of the leading lights from the label's story. Mala is in a strident mood with "Expected, Level 10" carrying through that extra touch of melody from the Mala In Cuba LP. DVA cuts loose with the leftfield scattershot groove of "Technical Difficulties", reveling in tonal experimentation and jagged rhythmic flair to a stunning end. Still locked into the sci-fi trap tangent that characterised Severant, Kuedo turns out the haunting "Mtzpn" and Helix pops up for a remix of Kode9's "Xingfu Lu" that strips down to bare essentials with a little starlit soul rubbed into the framework.
Review: The second release on the Teklife label sees the latest album-length journey through footwork from collective mainstay DJ Earl. Obey artist Shepard Fairey provides the retina-searing artwork for Open Your Eyes and the music within leaves as much, if not more, of a lasting impression on the senses. Alongside contributions from fellow Teklife artists MoonDoctor, DJ Manny, Taso and DJ Taye, perhaps the most surprising individual involved in Open Your Eyes is Oneohtrix Point Never, aka Daniel Lopatin, who features on three of the album's tracks as well as being credited on mixing duties. After the celebration of DJ Rashad's legacy that launched Teklife, this second release sees the collective's position at the forefront of the footwork movement further reaffirmed.
DJ Rashad/DJ Spin/Taso - "Roll Up That Loud" (3:37)
DJ Rashad/Gant-Man - "Get Fuk'd Up" (3:01)
DJ Rashad/DJ Manny/DJ Spin - "Let's Roll Out" (3:48)
Microglobe/Machinedrum - "High On Hope" (4:13)
DJ Rashad/DJ Phil - "Come Close" (4:25)
DJ Rashad/DJ Earl - "Wear Her Pussy Out" (3:53)
DJ Rashad/DJ Spinn - "Oh God" (4:51)
DJ Rashad/Gant-Man/DJ Manny - "Ratchet City" (3:02)
DJ Rashad/Dj Taye - "Get You Burnt" (4:22)
DJ Rashad/Tripletrain/DJ Spin - "Pass That" (3:14)
DJ Rashad/Boylan/DJ Manny - "Tony Montana" (2:51)
DJ Rashad/DJ Tre - "Yeah We Do This" (4:49)
DJ Rashad/Traxman - "Lost Worlds" (3:38)
DJ Rashad/DJ Spinn/DJ Paypal (RSP) - "Do You Wanna B Mine" (5:26)
DJ Rashad/DJ Manny - "Roll A Tree" (4:49)
Review: This debut release from footwork crew Teklife's label sees them pay tribute to DJ Rashad, the late, great innovator who passed away in the spring of 2014. Afterlife gathers together a collection of DJ Rashad tracks co-produced by Rashad's close friends and associates, including DJ Spinn, Traxman, DJ Manny and more. As the label themselves state, this 14 track album really conveys the wealth of musical influences and knowledge Rashad possessed with soul, hip-hop, house, techno and many more all brought together at 160 BPM. "Afterlife is our tribute to our friend and our inspiration. Rest In Peace DJ Rashad," Teklife write. Enough said. A must for all fans of Rashad.