Release date: October 14, 2014
DJ Quik was, and perhaps always will be, one of the most underrated producers to ever emerge from the West Coast, plus he could always hold his own on the mic. As far as his discography, you can say it's underrated too, however, I do own "Quik Is The Name", "Way 2 Fonky", and "Safe & Sound". "The Midnight Life" would mark his 9th studio album, his first since 2011's "The Book of David", which I also own.
After the "Intro", the album starts with the Dr. Dre esque sounding/apply titled "That Nigga'z Crazy", which is good and about what you would expect from Quik, especially if you're familiar with his older material. After that, we head into "Back That Shit Up" (featuring Tay F 3rd) could probably grace radio today, but it still comes off smooth with a gangsta touch, while "Puffin' the Dragon" and the "gangsta R&B" touch of "Pet Semetary", which sort of finds Quik dismissing the claim that R&B and West Coast hip hop are dead, are also very good songs. In addition to Quik, I feel the star of this album is David Blake II, who I'm assuming is Quik's son (if I'm wrong on that, please correct me). Blake II blesses "Shine", the bangin' "Trapped On The Tracks" (also featuring Bishop Lamont), and the awesome "That Getter", the album's best song.
Even with a respectable amount of very good material, everything else on the album, in my view, is more miss than hit. "The Conduct" (featuring Mack 10, who sounds different), probably would've been better several years back, but I didn't care for the beat and whoever did the Roger Troutman influenced part of the hook did a GREAT job and I'd be surprised if that was something he and Quik worked on prior to his death and Quik had it in the vault all these years. "Life Jacket" (featuring Suga Free) is ok, but I've never been a fan of Suga Free and anything he's on is weighed down. And last but not least, trust me, if you've heard ANY song titled "Fuck all Night", you've heard them all.
Overall, I'll go with a solid 3.5 star rating for this album, which is a few notches below "The Book of David". While he's not saying anything particularly new, Quik can still bring it with the best of them behind the boards, and I look forward to hearing more from him, as well as David Blake II, who is a star in the making if he captures the right amount of buzz. "The Midnight Life" is a recommendation for Quik fans.