Italian-born London-based artist Fabio Monesi is a true house head. He produces and plays hardware-driven records that hark back to the classic sounds of house’s late-’80s golden era. Most of his releases have landed on his own Wilson Records—a vinyl-only imprint that has also housed records from Gene Hunt, Steve Murphy, and Jordan Fields, among others—as well as a few select EPs on labels that share his aesthetic (L.I.E.S.'s Russian Torrent Versions, Arour Records, and Skylax).
For his latest EP, Pipe Dreams, Monesi returns to Wilson Records following last year’s debut album, Parasol Dance. The EP is filled with the gritty club-based sounds upon which Monesi has built his name, presenting four analog-heavy house cuts. “Mirage” kicks the EP off with a dusty sci-fi synth line that swirls and morphs underneath a chest-thumping kick and an intertwining bassline. It’s a trippy ride, especially towards the track's mid-way point when its elements seem to give way, leaving just an off-kilter drum groove before it builds itself back up again. Up next, “Endless Struggle” is centered around an overtly feel-good vocal sample that brings to mind DJ Metatron/Traumprinz. Monesi’s gritty drum-machine groove holds it together and sets it on its way to being a sure-fire summer favorite.
On the flip, Monesi keeps things more subdued with the gorgeously smooth title track. Again, he shows his prowess at unearthing enticing vocal samples; this time, it's housed within a jazzy framework with silky chords and a groove-led bassline. "Chi-Town" rounds out the EP on a slightly more left-field tip, its tumbling groove and marching bass providing a healthy bed for choppy percussion and trippy vocals. The overall mood and irregular beat provide a fitting end to the stand-out EP.