Review: Donato Dozzy has long been one of techno's most inventive and singularly minded talents. Even so, this latest full-length - his first since 2013 - is pretty conceptual. There's something more than a little Matthew Herbert-esque about Dozzy's desire to create an entire album out of the near operatic vocals of Rome-based singer Anna Caragnano. Using nothing but her voice - harmonies, solos, grunts, whispers, speech and dreamy freestyle passages - and a swathe of sound effects, Dozzy creates a rich, evocative, often spine-tingling range of largely ambient, otherworldly tracks. There are occasional rhythmic passages, of course - see "Festa (A Mattola)" in particular - but for the most part the Italian producer concentrates on textures and atmospheres. The results are rarely less than beguiling.
Review: Having spent much of last year cutting up hazy acapella vocals on the sublime Sintetizzatrice full-length on Spectrum Spools, Donato Dozzy returns to the dancefloor with a fine collection of techno workouts. He begins with the deep and sleepy riffs and shuffling rhythms of "Aurrora", before heading into tribal territory with the bass-heavy percussion workout "Ritmica". As its' title suggests, "TechTresor" is a rolling tribute to Berlin's longest-running techno club, while "The Drunken Ghost" is accurately named. Sitting somewhere between electro, techno and odd electronica, its' curious melodies and weird effects sound strangely like a ghostly figure stumbling around and knocking over furniture, while looking for its' next fried chicken fix.
Review: Italian techno doyen Donato Dozzy has long been a favourite at New York club The Bunker, and now he makes an appearance on the club's label. Staying true to the trance-led aesthetic that informs everything he does, "Quadra Sette" is a layered, dense affair, ebbing and flowing over limber break beats. "Quadra Nove" meanwhile is harder and more direct. Designed for the peak-time, it sees the affable artist lay down gnawing tonal bleeps, haunted synth lines and relentless percussive ticks. The end result is reminiscent of Mike Parker getting down with Richie Hawtin's FUSE project and makes for captivating listening.
Review: Stroboscopic Artefacts boss Lucy lends his hand to a selection of music taken deep from the label's personal history bringing together a high profile cast of names (of which there are many) with it alongside a floating reinterpretation Xhin's stone cold classic "Link". Highlighting his creative partnership with Ben Klock, "War Lullaby" from 2015 is given a shining, bell-tone rerub while Donato Dozzy's "Sotto Ma Sotto" from the ballistic Terzo Giorno EP (2014) is pitched down into a slower percussion workout alongside droning Mike Parker-esque basslines. Lucy's remake of Caterina Barbieri's "Virgo Rebellion" furthermore is another reminder of how he and his label Stroboscopic Artefacts have been breaking the barrier between experimental and club music for the past 10 years.
Review: The ongoing celebration this year of Dekmental's tenth anniversary has already yielded a series of interesting split EPs and the eight instalment is no exception. It starts with Peter Van Hoesen and Donato Dozzy's "Storta". Over a sliding, distended rhythm, the techno duo conjure up cinematic sound scapes. In stark contrast is Matrixxman's "Sexual Frustration", which draws on classic Midwest techno to deliver pneumatic kicks and wild acid tones. Deniro's "Serval" sees another shift in style, but remains in the same geographical space as Matrixxman; combing atmospheric synths with powerful bass tones, it sounds like the lost connection between Patrice Scott and Kenny Larkin. The droning, discordant techno of Talismann's "Aciano" completes the latest Dekmantel celebration.
Review: The prospect of Donato Dozzy reworking Bee Mask for the Spectrum Spool label is a mouth watering one and this double LP collection, entitled straightforwardly enough Donato Dozzy Plays Bee Mask more than lives up to it's billing. Originally commissioned to turn in a remix of Bee Mask's "Vaporware" track from last year's LP for Room 40, Dozzy apparently felt the track's inherent beauty merited more than just the one and sent over seven! This decision has resulted in a superb collection of reimaginations from the Voices Of The Lake producer, ranging from calming moments of serenity to bleepish, deep techno explorations.
Review: There should be more than a few techno fans getting rather excited right now. You see, Donato Dozzy and Nuel's Aquaplano Sessions is something of a "holy grail" for tribal-influenced minimal techno collectors. Originally released over two 12" singles on the short-lived Aquaplano label in 2008 and 2009, the material has long been held in high regard - so much so, in fact, that copies of the original vinyl pressings are extremely hard to find. This reissue from Spectrum Spools is great news for anyone who missed out first time round. While there are some immaculate deeper moments (see the becalmed dreaminess of "Aqua 8"), it's the robust, aggressive, bass-heavy and occasionally intense tracks that really stand out.
Review: This triple-album collection is something of a treat for Prins Thomas fans. Released as an accompaniment to his epic, three-disc Paradise Goulash mix, it's entirely made up of previously unreleased re-edits from the Norwegian maestro. Musically, it's as cosmic and varied as you'd expect, variously touching on ambient (Claude Speed), Balearic jazz (Gabor Szabo), Middle Eastern oddness (Cat Trance), synth-samba (Richard Schneider Jnr), modern classical (a Johanna Billings cover of Arthur Russell's "This Is How We Walk On The Moon"), and all manner of hazy, sun-kissed grooves. There's little slamming dancefloor fare, but plenty of unique versions of overlooked, little known or forgotten musical gems. For that alone, it should be an essential purchase.
Review: A true staple of the Amsterdam scene, the Rush Hour affiliated Yuri Boselie aka Cinnaman takes up the reins for local institution Dekmantel's extended tenth birthday celebrations with this mastermix. It takes in the entirety of the 10 volume edition - what an effort. What may seem as an outrageous challenge - what with the compilation's genre diversity and wide rage of tempos - it's a success, for they've certainly found the right candidate. Cinnaman plays a wide range of styles anyway, and is never afraid to mix the known with the unknown - he has a reputation for his remarkable combinations and transitions. From moments of sublime ambience (Italian ambient legend Gigi Masin with the utterly evocative "Maja") to bass heavy electro bounce (courtesy of Egyptian Lover or Syracuse & Epsilove), right through to techno bangers of the cerebral variety (by Donato Dozzy & Peter Van Hoesen or local hero Talismann) and stuff by Bufiman or Tony Allen - it's a solid effort here by one of Holland's finest selectors.
Review: Dreamy Harbour celebrates 25 years of Berlin institution Tresor with several new and unreleased cuts by staples of the club and its seminal in house label alike. Featuring work of artists from the US, Germany, China, France, Austria, Italy and the UK, it is worth dwelling on how the cultural conditions that birthed Detroit techno (ie economic neglect and broken industry) were mirrored by the disused bunkers and impromptu parties of post-unification East Berlin. Techno a found new, vigorous expression. "Without Tresor, Berlin would not be what it is today," concludes founder Dimitri Hegemann. "Even though it sounds a bit pretentious, it is true. Tresor was the prototype for an extraordinary club. It was only possible as a combination of the right time, the right place, the right content and determined people." Excerpt of liner notes, by Rob Sharp - November 2016.