Nuel – Trance Mutation (Further Records – Fur 038)
Close the door and enter the relaxation chamber with oil massage and fish therapy. Manuel Fogliata a.k.a. Nuel operates a spa of sounds to purify minds and bodies. After a couple of technoid releases, most recently for enigmatic Aquaplano Limited series, it’s quite unexpected to hear the Italian on such a esoteric tip. Looking at the publisher, Further Records, the absence of booming drones is not a surprise, if we just think on fellow Italian’s Donato Dozzy’s album on the Seattle imprint last year.
At first sight the orange vinyl in silk-screen printed Ancient Egypt cover depicting ibis-headed god Thoth – one extra point for that – may possess a low techno quotient, but the album, as an uninterrupted hommage to repetition, gives another perspective how to perceive techno. Downtempo polyrhythmic excursions with guitars and analog percussion lend to “Trance Mutation” a new age feel without drifting away from the rhythm structures of floor-targeting ammunition.
Listened to the album three times in a row, which happens rarely, and not because of finding it difficult to access, but because with its hypnotic loops and well-dosed melodies it gradually became a part of ambiance. If asked about favorite tracks then I would mention “Correspondence”, “Polarity”, and especially “Rhythm”, which is like a journey up to Machu Picchu, but essentially it’s one entirety.
By making “Trance Mutation” feeling very live and acoustic, it might find wider audience even among those who see electronic artists as ambassadors of soulless noise. A soothing experience for this time of the year.