San Francisco label Manjumasi keeps up a good head of steam with a fine fourth release. This time it comes from another local artist in the form of veteran Ben Engelberg, who for the first time adopts the new moniker Bengal.
Releasing a highly infectious brand of house that mixes up textures on labels like VIVa Music and Trapez LTD, the likes of Laurent Garnier and Luciano often reach for his tunes. After something of a hiatus, Ben is now back at his luxurious best, serving up a trio of superbly musical tunes that marry driving drums with punchy percussion and come with remixes from Dachshund and MUUI. Well versed in everything from jazz to Javanese gamelan, he has a widely infused sound that is fully absorbing.
Opening things up with real style is ‘Fractal Dust’, an exquisite deep house track with tender piano keys and soft, circling pads making for a truly spiritual vibe. It is late night and romantic, while ’Masada’ is heavier but just as beautiful. Bulky drums kick down low and rolling bass sucks you in over and over as chords linger delicately in the air above. ‘Universal Traveler’ is next and is the third and final original. Again it is a vast and cavernous affair with weighty drums and sparse but emotive keys that manages to be dreamy but driven. All three are standout track from this truly talented producer.
First up on remix duty is Swiss maestro Dachshund, who has turned up the energy on ‘Masada’ and delivered an outstanding track that combines his trademark stabby synth motifs with the more subtle melodic elements of the original making for a tune that is both strong yet soft. Rounding things out is a re-interpretation of ‘Fractal Dust’ by Berlin mainstay MUUI. His remix takes the original into an even deeper space, where expansive sonic realms are washed over with beautiful pads and melodic
With this latest EP Manjumasi Records continues to shine a light on some serious talent from the Bay area and beyond.
Release Date: February 2nd, 2017
1. Fractal Dust (Original Mix)
2. Masada (Original Mix)
3. Universal Traveler (Original Mix)
4. Masada (Dachshund Remix)
5. Fractal Dust (MUUI Remix)