Italian balearic extraordinaire My Friend Dario returns to Hell Yeah! Recordings for another outing, this time with an an ode the Mar Jonio coast that straddles the south side of the Italian peninsula. Sonica Jonica is four tracks of dense seaside sonics for all hours, blurring the lines between freaky disco, mid-tempo sunshine and loose, psychedelic funk.
The eponymous ‘Sonica Jonica’ opens proceedings with its frothy, foaming synth bass and throbbing arpeggios, warping and contorting the composition into near-cacophony before an exit point appears on the horizon; the ambience of a quiet coastal morning provides a momentary interlude, as thunderous drums signal the return of the dark-tempered rhythm section. This is a chugging, brilliant club workout to open up the EP.
Second track ‘Marittimo’ leads us to baggier territory, where deep house organs cavort amidst marimbas and hand-made percussions, with a jazzy, low-swung bassline pulling up the rear. Background music for beautiful days, or morning coffee by the spiaggia; it’s lush, easy-going sonics, whichever way you take it.
‘Old But Gold’ is a slight return to the digital feel of the opener, with synth toms and airy seventh chords sitting side-by-side atop a loopy, whirring beat and circular guitar riff that harkens back to the essence of another My Friend Dario track, Tora, released on the label back in 2020.
Closing out the EP is the evocatively titled ‘Acid Mosquito in a Summer Night’, a slice of bizarre technoid brilliance that throws a psychotic bassline under offbeat cymbals and wah guitar, touching on afro, exotica and dizzying techno motifs. A certifiable balearic freakout to finish up this excellent four-tracker from the Italian producer.
The Sonica Jonica EP is available now at Hell Yeah! Recordings. Digi only!
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