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Anthony “Shake” Shakir – Frictionalism 1994 – 2009 review

Artist: Anthony “Shake” Shakir
Title: Frictionalism 1994-2009
Label: Rush Hour Recordings
Genre: Techno, Electro
Format: 12″, Digital
Buy From: Juno Records, Juno Download

Deep, funky Detroit techno has always been the name of the game for the insanely underrated producer extraordinaire, Anthony “Shake” Shakir. You’ve all heard everything there is to know about the pioneers of Detroit techno- Juan Atkins, Kevin Saunderson, and Derrick May; but “Shake” played a huge part in the development of what’s often referred to as the second wave of Detroit techno (which included Carl Craig, Underground Resistance, Jeff Mills, etc.).

While his peers were forging superstar DJ careers in Europe and beyond, Shakir chose to keep things grassroots by  churning out inventive, forward thinking tracks on his own Frictional label as well as on Puzzlebox records, the electro label co-run with Detroit’s Keith Tucker. Just as how Rush Hour Records resurrected the works of fellow, often underappreciated Detroit techno pioneer, Kenny Larkin (The Chronicle, 2008), Frictionalism 1994-2009 provides a rich history lesson with this comprehensive collection of 35 tracks from the last 15 years.

Shakir’s wide-ranging influence on the evolution of techno, house, and electro is on fine display. The syncopated, stuttering beats of “Spectre” and “Simpatico” clearly conjure up a dubstep blueprint years ahead of its time, yet still sound so vitally fresh.

Many classics including “Breathe Deeper”, “Get a Feeling”, and “The Floor Filler” are here in full glory with their lush keys and warm, emotive beats to remind us all how truly amazing the deeper side of techno can get…straight up Detroit style!

Apparently this retrospective is paving the way for future releases from Shakir who plans to start producing more tracks on Frictional this year. This is an absolute must-have for everyone from the seasoned techno connoisseur to the newer generation curious to know where the true motor city sound came from and where it’s heading.

Review: Steve Phillips