We have a word in italian for music like this: “stupenda”. It doesn’t only mean marvellous, it also surprises you. Makes you euphoric, feeling great. That is exactly what Oak City, the first song of the EP that the italian sound craftsman Andrea Recla aka Neve, delivers to the listener. I am connected with what the song sweats from every pore: it is an open musical letter to Rovereto, the city in Trentino, North-East of Italy, where the author comes from. The city, as the name reads in the italian language, is indeed the oak (“rovere“) city. The fresh sounding lead of the song has some 80s vibe to it, some old school we-don’t-know-what-problems-are kind of vibe. That makes the whole experience glorious, like holding a cloud in one hand and a sun in the other and smashing them one against the other. If that makes sense.
The EP goes further with Everytime, a song that sees the participation of Wild Hits and Norah B. Brace yourselves, because we’re in front of a classical liquid drum & bass hit. Cool, fresh, high-pitched vocals are framed by perfectly chopped drums where, from time to time, the classical amen breaks pop out without sounding too obvious. The melody, in between, fills the empty space without losing grip on you. Overall, I felt easy like a sunday morning, if you know what I mean.
The third track of the EP confirms the dreamy vibe, but on the dark side. The title, Reanimate, suggests that something darker is going on. The”peep” of the heart rate machine echoes in distance, while a dreamy pad keeps the whole atmosphere suspended. You literally have no idea how you should feel about it: until it drops, then it’s clear. A punchy bass draws clear marks in the timeline, subdividing the time ahead of you in four bars at once, clearly marking the pace of the song. A chopped vocal mingles perfectly with it, delivering a creepy feeling. This feeling is lifted off your shoulders when the dreamy pad comes back (ha! not everything is going bad!). This song gave me the same feelings that also Incessant by Noisia gave me, but with a different feeling to it. This one, as well, doesn’t let you rest for a second.
Finally, The Message comes to rescue the wanderers on the path: a message of hope, love and freedom that we perceived throughout the whole EP. A very “questioning” piano leads the message in some sort of uncertainty: perhaps what Neve wants from us is to find our own message, to question ourselves on what it could be. The sound of the piano really sounds more like a question than like a statement, and that’s lovely. There is a suspended feeling to this song: it feels like it is not really completed in its own message. However, isn’t it such a good metaphor of what we are? Incomplete, transparent, “cucumbers with anxiety”. We can’t really rate this EP anything but 5/5: we’re in front of a masterpiece.
The italian Turin-based The Dreamers Recordings is quickly climbing the rankings in the european drum & bass scene. Their signature sound, ambition and uniqueness never cease to amaze us and always manage to get through our selection of what, in the end, we write about. We talked about them almost one year ago for the first time, when the 2016 Drum & Bass Awards saw their name popping out for the big crowds. We interviewed Neve where he gave us very deep insights on what he really is as an artist and as a man. We reviewed some of their best works of 2017, among which the ones of Synth Ethics (link), Frame (link) and Kiril (link). This is what we believe is the true form of music: experimenting, searching your own way at any cost. This is what everyone should do.
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