- It'd be unfair to say that Donato Dozzy only plays deep, hypnotic techno that favors a slower tempo. (Indeed, the only time I've ever seen him DJ in person, the BPM never fell below 130.) But it's clear that the Italian producer has a deep, abiding love for music that gives you room to dream. And his debut album, the limited edition cassette K for Further Records, will do little to change this perception. As far as I can tell, the first track on the thing is a delicious, plodding 15 minutes at 60 BPM.
I say "as far as I can tell" because the supposed nine tracks on K are mixed elegantly into one another, providing two 28 minute rides into ambience. More than anything else, K resembles the sort of music found on Pete Namlook's Fax label in the late '90s. But unlike Namlook and his many (many) friends, Dozzy is never interested in pursuing abstraction. There's always a beat anchoring things, just in case you feel like you're floating too far away. There's always a sweet melody to remind you that you're looking up at the sky, rather than the Earth from space.
There's a fine line, of course, between sweet and too sweet. The music that you find labeled New Age instead of electronic. Dozzy knows this, and always has something to keep it dirty or dark enough to keep K out of the yoga studio. The aforementioned first track's droning backdrop is exceptionally creepy once you pull into focus; the song that ends the first side has a groaning propulsion along with a kick and a hi-hat. It isn't all dreamscapes, though: The second side's opener—perhaps the least successful tune on K—has a chorus, looped in time to the awkward and overbearing beat.
It's understandable that Dozzy would shoehorn in a beat-driven piece onto the second side. He does, after all, have many different sides to his musical personality. But when an acid line enters halfway through the second side of the cassette, supported by little more than itself for several minutes, you hear what makes him beloved by so many. He's a master at producing music that sounds both avant-garde (to dance floor enthusiasts) and palatable (to those uninterested in harder sounds) at the same time. K represents the finest collection of this particular talent yet.