Theo Parrish – Heal Yourself and Move
Chicago Legend Theo Parrish has a reputation for delivering outlandish, yet sleek cuts. Always off kilt, his distinctive sound stays recognisable. Mixing in the Jazziness that symbolises much of the Chicago sound akin to contemporaries like Ron Trent, ‘Heal Yourself and Move’ is something special. It’s meditative. Released in 1998 on his classic album ‘First Floor’, distributed by the ground-breaking UK label Peacefrog Records, this track is the pinnacle of electronic and organic synergy.
The 118bpm makes the aura woozy from the off. It’s a low key affair, the improvised sounding midi bass trembles for 40 seconds before a sub bass and salt shakers kick in and out. It makes you want to stretch out and get ready for a good dance. The pace increases with the background clicks growing in whilst a man who sounds like he’s warming up in the background hums. Together you get an intoxicating mix, the overtone plonky keys providing a real experimental edge. You can tell Fred P was inspired by this track, with sounds echoing his signature minor key synth pads. All makes for a very warm welcome. Remember the man warming up in the background? He comes back to the party, preaching to the masses to ‘Heal yourself and move …let God be your Guide’. You can hear the melancholic spirit of struggle in the vocal as it tries to help its listeners to be at ease with their pain.
In a recent interview with Afropunk, Parrish states ‘there’s a huge amount of flat dance music out here when I go to the stores. I hear a lot of unfiltered, unfinished things, and I think the more people have an idea of craft, the more it will change. For my own label, craft has always been a thing [I value], and it’s evident when someone puts their music forth.’ There’s certainly dexterous craft put into practice on this banger. Essential Deep House listening.