Boomkat Product Review:
Dilla's absolute classic tome "Welcome 2 Detroit" returns with a bounty of bonus material for its 20th birthday.
You know we'd almost forgotten how damn good this was. At this point in his career, Dilla was still assembling his legend, Slum Village had been through years of label drama and his solo material hadn't hit its cultish popular peak. So "Welcome 2 Detroit" appeared, a celebration of his home city full of the kind of production tics that would be endlessly aped in the years that followed: those neck-snapping 12-bit beats and that clipped sub bass. At the time, it was misunderstood - Dilla's anything goes fusion of soul, funk, bass, boom bap and (cough) techno was too much for many traditional rap heads. Now, it sounds prophetic.
So much came from Dilla, and not just LA's Low End Theory-focused beat scene. He helped inspire a generation of producers who ended up making all kinds of music, from lo-fi pop to vaporwave and beyond. These tracks, running through rap and rare groove, psychedelia, funk and electro, still sound effortlessly fresh and endlessly replayable. Instrumental versions of everything plus alternate takes and demos too, serious.