While another Compton-based Producer/Rapper has spent more than the last decade messing around with overpriced headphones and teasing an album that may never come, DJ Quik has quietly been been putting in work that’s flown completely over your head. Quik, now over 20 years deep into the game, is a G Funk pioneer that has had his fingertips printed over dozens of hit records without even getting a fraction of the shine he deserves. It would be foolish to think that a smart man like DJ Quik lacks any sort of self-awareness, so naturally his 2009 collaboration with Death Row legend Kurupt BlaQKout felt like the coming out party of his late-career renaissance. At this point, it’s clear Quik doesn’t give a fuck if you buy his record and he doesn’t give two fucks if you give him the Grammy that he should have gotten by now.
Quik continued this late-career stride with The Book of David, a personal and highly experimental offering complete with dense production and revealing lyrics detailing his role in the rap game, as well as tales of betrayal (and also plenty of the typical funk). What’s interesting about this new record, titled The Midnight Life, is (from what I’ve heard from the released snippits) the fact that Quik seems to be more or less returning to his roots, rather than push his sound further to the left. Just looking a the pen-and-pixel album art evokes memories of Quik is the Name or Way Too Fonky. Does this mean the fire isn’t still lit? Absolutely not. The smart-ass humor is still there, as well as the relevant social commentary. It’s just a sound that Quik is a master of, that he clearly feels like refining even further. “That Getter” details a rapper that isn’t too old, but rather “too funky” and one that noticed “motherfuckers in my neighborhood that grew up to be nothing/I went around the world stuntin/they still there doin nothing”. Stream the first single of Quik’s new album below, and check out some Quik cuts below that.