Omena Records was set up in 2014 by Local Talk co-founder Tooli, and has been gradually crafting a unique, genre-defying sound. The first Omena record, « Always » by HNNY, established a mellower vibe than the straight house of Local Talk, while subsequent releases have meandered through a variety of realms, from warehouse-ready techno belters (Anders Hellberg -- « Fiction ») to tropical instrumentals (Golden Retriever -- « Capablanca »). And yet, despite the diversity, nothing seems out of place. The catalogue is held together by a common thread of lush textures and jazz-inflected harmonies. This upcoming release -- their second LP of the year (following Seb Wildblood’s mini-album « :~^ ») -- does not disappoint.
Finnish producer Saine (SoundCloud) has been steadily putting out music since 2007. His first three albums, on Helsinki label Cymbidium Records, paired elements of hip-hop and funk with more abstract instrumental ideas, laying the groundwork for his later, sample-driven dance tracks. More recently Saine contributed the stunning ‘Prime Chops’ to the first Quartet Series record, and has continued to perfect a warm deep-house sound with the « Mint EP » released earlier this year on FINA Records (for which we premiered ‘Technique’). His new album, « For The Dreamers », harks back to his earlier beat works, while incorporating the refined approach to dance music that we have come to expect from Saine.
Today we premiere ‘Fireflies,’ the seventh song on the 12-track album. The piece opens with four bars of punchy kick, embellished with a distant cymbal and a subtle vinyl crackle. An arpeggiated synth line begins beneath a low-pass EQ that is progressively lifted as the tension builds. Grounded in a familiar house two-and-four snare-over-kick rhythm, various percussion is added to the mix, with brief, syncopated breaks. With its 4/4 beat, ‘Fireflies’ occupies a space towards the dance side of the spectrum in the context of the whole record, however, it is certainly not out of place. Coming just after the mid-way point, it is a beautiful peak for the album. The rich texture and muddled, aquatic effect is perfectly in tune with the other tracks, while the subsequent piece, ‘Quartz,’ employs an arpeggiaic motif that reflects the previous melody. « For The Dreamers » shows Saine at his best, consolidating a decade of musical ideas into a comprehensive whole that is a fantastic addition to the Omena catalogue. « For The Dreamers » is available for pre-order on Juno.