Enrico Sangiuliano – Astral Projection / Blooming Era [Drumcode]

Veteran Italian producer and techno artist, Enrico Sanguiliano, bounces back with his first release since his ‘Moon Rocks’ EP was released in late 2016. This 2-song offering continues the proper techno journey Sanguiliano has been embarking on since the early 20-teens with departures into techno niche genres. Here’s the breakdown:

Astral Projection

Pulsing kick and cymbals pound through an almost ambient soundscape before melding with topper
percussion and interspersed synth and effects. The result is spatially transcendent, as the track’s name suggests.

The build into the drop is short but spacey and gives way to an irresistibly side-chained bass/lead riff. The sudden chord changes near mid-track are startling, esp. for this brand of techno. The second build is cordially sophisticated and gave me Tresor chills the first time I heard it. The peak is nearly euphorically trance-like, which gives the drop-in an almost two-track-in-one feel…something we lost in the late 90s-early 2000s whose re-emergence would be a godsend.

This track is just exquisite for many reasons, but mostly because it’s an extension, the next step, a return to the past wrapped inside of a track gives a foretaste of what the future may bring.

Blooming Era

The intro starts with a basic throb that unexpectedly falls into a heavy groove punctuated by side percussion and the occasional loop. Hints of dark brooding synth, spacey drone, and elegiac pads drop into a quasi-dub riff structure. I know this sounds clinical, but as hard as this track pushes, it is soulless compared to the single’s A-side.

The cut-up into the ambient-cum-analog section is sweet, and sports well-placed sequencing and reverb effects, promising hard-edged euphoria, only to land back in the more-or-less standard issue dark techno riffing and pounding rhythms. There are just enough shifts to the track that it manages to rise above the usual tech and into a higher realm of headspace. Not nearly as polished or
revelatory as its counterpart, “Blooming Era” is still a decent track with plenty of remix/floor potential.

“Astral Projection”/”Blooming Era” is a classic example of evolving techno: sometimes heavenly, sometimes foundering in its steps to move forwards and break new ground, but worth a listen, and in the A-side’s case, definitely worth a buy!

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