REVIEW: NIC FANCUILLI - BALANCE 021 | 11 Jun 2012

I've always enjoyed the 'Balance' mix compilations from the very get go. The last one; mixed and grooved almost to perfection by Deetron, and which I also had the privilege to review here earlier this year, was a breathtaking excursion through dance music of the highest order. I also enjoyed Balance 019 with Henry Saiz on mix duties immensely. Balance 021 is, by far, no different either.

Mixed by Saved Records boss Nic Fancuilli, this mix continues the Balance Music ethos of providing the listener with pure quality, as well as highlights the very essence of Nic's own ethos as a DJ and label owner. I vividly remember 'hanging out' with Nic and mutual buddy Matt Crowhurst, a few years ago on one of his visits to Singapore talking about almost everything under the sun really. Most notably, about Canterbury, a small town in England which people rarely speak of; unless you've graduated from the University of Kent or literally grew up amongst its quiet and pleasant surroundings. He even recalled a pub called 'The Cherry Tree', that we've both been to at one time or other, although my memory of the stunning blonde Irish Capricorn waitress that worked there was, as they say, my own little experience altogether. When the topic of 'music' eventually did come up, we both found that we shared similar ideas, opinions and even roots.

Nic's 'roots' and wealth of experience clearly shines effervescently on this mix. He delivers a plethora of diverse tracks on CD1, simply and aptly titled 'Balance', that flows seamlessly and effortlessly from the atmospheric Intro of Luca & Bruno's 'Raindrops' into May jane Cole's 'Something In The Air'. From here on end, it's another balanced,  breathtaking journey through deep house, tech-house and techno, straddling various styles from atmospheric  to melodic, jacking beats to rolling basslines, and just about all else you can think of that's in between, keeping the focus on sheer quality and intricate mix techniques, sometimes, even three at a time.

From the Iron Curtis' 'Goma' to Franck Roger's 'After All' to tracks by the Loverbirds, Joris Voorn, Quell, Marco Bassanov and Omar S, Nic keeps the mix intensely diverse and timeless, and yet keeps the arrangement, continuity and flow subtle and intelligent, without trying too hard at all. Something that seems to be missing in most other mixed compilations and DJ sets these days.

On the second CD, again, very aptly titled 'Saved', Nic chooses to focus on tracks from his own label. "A shameless plug?" One might ask. Or an autobiography of the man's passionate drive to create and assimilate? To some extent, I think it's a bit of both, but when it's done as well as this, why ask the question anyway?

Nine remixes were recorded specially for this mix, and again, in keeping with the labels ethos, it keeps the focus on quality house music and highlights the diversity within the label. Nic delivers a stunning mix that borders on its timeless feel with representation from the venerable older heads like Stacey Pullen and Rolando, working with Fancuilli himself, on Limmo (the Robert Dietz Remix is featured here), and The Test (Paul Ritch Funky Mix) respectively.  Nic also weaves in more his own talent in the mix on his own track 'Wild' and his remixes of Loco Dice's ' Definition, Radioslave's 'Grindhouse', Chiapet's classic 'Westworld' (under his infamous Skylark guise) and Josh Wink's 'Don't Laugh'; one of the nine remixes specially crafted for this mix. There's plenty of respect given to the new blood too, with artists like Robert James, Cilo and Samu.I.



I did especially enjoy Samu.I's 'Forgiven' which cheekily "borrows" the riff from MK's 1993 classic remix of "Can You Forgive Her" by the Pet Shop Boys. (I can see some of you 'heads' digging through your 90s crates now actually).



CD2 rounds off nicely with Mark Fanciulli's 'Sacrifice', a respectful nudge towards the importance of family and an overview to why Saved Records is one of the most respected and essential labels in the industry.

Balance Music has again delivered another quality release from the mind and heart of another great DJ and producer, that, undoubtedly, in more discerning circles, will sound just as fresh if whipped out and played in 5 years to come. It's also the focus on Nic Fancuilli's overall ideals on life actually, as a timeless, diverse journey. If you've ever stayed the way through his set from start to finish, you'll know what I mean.  Now, I doubt that 'The Cherry Tree' in Canterbury still stands where it was, perhaps it may still, and if I ever catch you there sometime Nic, the first round is on me.

CD1:Balance

Luca & Bruno – Raindrops Intro

Maya Jane Coles – Something in the Air
Juno Download (Mp3/WAV)

SIS – Break Down
Juno Download (Mp3/WAV) | Amazon (256kbps Mp3)

DifferentME – Back to Tomorrow

Iron Curtis – Goma
Juno Download (Mp3/WAV) | Amazon (256kbps Mp3)

Eastment – U Dig (Cassy & Chris Carrier Remix)
iTunes (256kbps AAC)

Jae B – Vibe

NTFO, Rhadow – Roots

Juno Download (Mp3/WAV) | Amazon (256kbps Mp3)
Franck Roger, Mendel Turner – After All

Oscar OFferman – Only My Shorts

&ME – Purple Rain

Juno Download (Mp3/WAV) | Amazon (256kbps Mp3)
Ray Okpaya (feat. Obi Jazz) – Bounce to This

And.Id – Need for Chicago
Juno Download (Mp3/WAV) | Amazon (256kbps Mp3)

SLG – I Love You But I’ve Chosen Disco (feat. Smolny)

Amazon (256kbps Mp3) | iTunes (256kbps AAC)
Joris Voorn – Spank the Maid

Juno Download (Mp3/WAV) | Amazon (256kbps Mp3)
Nic Fanciulli – Movin’ On

Pol_On – Heavy Rain

Juno Download (Mp3/WAV) | Amazon (256kbps Mp3)
Lovebirds – The Beast

Juno Download (Mp3/WAV) | Amazon (256kbps Mp3)
Quell – Joy
Juno Download (Mp3/WAV) | iTunes (256kbps AAC)

Ricardo Villalobos, Jay Haze – Fenlow
Amazon (256kbps Mp3) | iTunes (256kbps AAC)

Efron, Piek – Vous Etes Fou
Juno Download (Mp3/WAV) | Amazon (256kbps Mp3)

Anonym – If Every Day Was a Sunny Day

Juno Download (Mp3/WAV) | Amazon (256kbps Mp3)
Humano – Life

Juno Download (Mp3/WAV) | Amazon (256kbps Mp3)
Vernon Bara, Igor Vincente – Don’t Feel No Way

Martin Eyerer, Glimpse – Southern Soul (Jay Shepheard Remix)

Juno Download (Mp3/WAV) | Amazon (256kbps Mp3)
Marco Basanov – Up

Omar S – Here’s Your Trance Now Dance

CD2: Saved

Gianni Callipari – Whybee
Simon Baker & Robert James – All Of A Sudden

Guti, Livio & Roby – We Are

Samu.l – Forgiven

Mark Broom – Jackpot (Robert James Remix)

Subb-an – This Place

Juno Download (Mp3/WAV) | Amazon (256kbps Mp3)
Philip Bader, Andrea Oliva – Girls

Emerson Todd – Haere Mai

&ME – Matters

Juno Download (Mp3/WAV)
Robert Dietz – Bingo Wings

Nic Fanciulli, Stacey Pullen – Limmo (Robert Dietz Remix)

Philip Bader – Amir Loves You (Nic Fanciulli & Davide Squillace Remix)

Clio – Bad Boy

Juno Download (Mp3/WAV) | Amazon (256kbps Mp3)
Harvey McKay – Showface (Acapella)

Alex Tepper – Feng Shoe

Boris Ross & Jeff Moore – Golden Dreams
Juno Download (Mp3/WAV) | iTunes (256kbps AAC)

Nic Fanciulli – Wild

Loco Dice – Definition (Nic Fanciulli Remix)

Amazon (256kbps Mp3) | iTunes (256kbps AAC)
Winx vs. Nic Fanciulli – Don’t Laugh (2012 Remix)

Clio – Mister Nice

Juno Download (Mp3/WAV) | Amazon (256kbps Mp3)
Nic Fanciulli, Rolando – The Test (Paul Ritch Funky Mix)

Radio Slave – Grindhouse (Nic Fanciulli Remix)
Amazon (256kbps Mp3) | iTunes (256kbps AAC)

Hollen, Pirupa – Black Fusion
Juno Download (Mp3/WAV) | iTunes (256kbps AAC)

Nic Fanciulli, Gary Beck – Hear Me Out (Nikola Gala Remix)

Chiapet – Westworld (Skylark Remix)

iTunes (256kbps AAC)
Mark Fanciulli – Sacrifice
Juno Download (Mp3/WAV) | iTunes (256kbps AAC)


By | Brendon P
Tags | Techno , House , Tech-House , Audio , Mixes



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