Leblaze is the moniker of Atlanta DJ Ryan Raja Rasheed. Rasheed’s been around for a good minute on the Atlanta/Decatur arthouse and house party circuit playing that smooth krunksoft fonk that breaks up those bullsh-y arthead conversations and drives asses to immediate twerkin’. He comes to us from a vast musical background that stretches from Steely Dan to M.F.Doom, from Dungeon family to Can, from Gary Newman to Nobody, not to mention a host of under-the-radar, obscure and old soul, funk, and r&b that the rest of us seem somehow to’ve either missed or discarded.
When he’s not working up the art and magics in his Atlanta studio, Leblaze stays in shape as Prefuse 73’s silent (really silent) partner on tour - you’ve probably seen him buried in hair and tables across the stage Prefuse, seemingly oblivious to the crowd, hell, seemingly unaware of himself.
On Pressure, his solo debut, along with Ahmad Szabo, Leblaze brings us a solid vibe in a well balanced, evenly composed sound collage – electric resin, pleasantly piercing horns and spacic strings expand, burst and dissolve under the supervsion and structure of hard, carbonated Prefusian beats that keeps everything honest. Pressure is a nice and smooth 20+ minute dose of soft pimpin, slow-mo bootyshake and warm venom. We think it stands as a fitting preface to good thangs to come from one of our favorite deejays.