– Gain Phaser

Artist : DNYO

Title : Gain Phaser

Title : Jamie Stevens & Marc Marzenit

Label : microCastle
Release : 02.12.2013

Genre: Progressive House/Techno

Review by Andy Howarth


Hailing from Sao Paulo, Daniel Oliveira aka DNYO is a regular on the huge Microcastle imprint, itself home to a veritable who’s who of Progressive producers. A first listen to his Grain Phaser EP and it’s not hard to see why, it’s exceptionally accomplished stuff.

Title track is excellent, and marries driving percussion with big room synths, whilst swirling soundscapes pan around in the background. The heavy use of phasing throughout should be obvious from the title of the record, but it’s skilfully used to lend the track an entrancing feel, rather than cheapen it like you’d expect from a wine bar DJ hammering a Pioneer effects module. Veteran Prog stalwart Marc Marzenit is on remix detail, and commences proceedings with spade-loads of sinister atmospherics, before the boompty bassline gatecrashes its way into the party. I’ll be honest and say that I wasn’t keen on the riff he’s chosen to develop the track with, as I felt it doesn’t make good on the initial promise of the tune’s foundations. It’s not Marzenit’s best work by any stretch, but it’s still far better than most of what passes for Progressive House these days.

Unfortunately it doesn’t improve with DNYO’s b-side effort ‘Funk Dimension’. I struggle to see where the funk element of the name is present, as repeated listens don’t offer up much past a slightly confused record with little in the way of direction. The percussion is suitably pacey and sounds beautifully polished, but besides that I can’t imagine a scenario where i’d want to hear it played out. Thankfully Jamie Stevens has been drafted in to give the track a new lick of paint. His ‘Tech Dub’ is ballsy and bassy in equal measure, and actually reminded me a little of Alan Braxe’s disco-tastic ‘Vertigo’ from days gone by, and praise doesn’t really come much higher than that. Cracking effort.

The EP is rounded off with ‘The Jam’ which see’s Daniel back on form, showcasing a grittier style with an electro-tinged hook that builds towards a dramatic crescendo. On the whole, it’s a qualified success, but my choices from the bunch would be the ‘Grain Phaser’ original, and Jamie’s Tech Dub version of ‘Funk Dimension’. Superb stuff on both accounts.

About the Author

Born of the Oxfordshire countryside, Andy has always preferred the quaint aspects of life around a historic city to the hustle and bustle of places like London or Birmingham. That said, the desire to satisfy his thirst for live music has led to him fleeing the tranquility of rural life on a regular basis, in favour of regions where the nightlife doesn't have to come to an abrupt end at 3am.