Nic Fanciulli delivers dynamically expanse, emotive debut LP, ‘My Heart’ [Interview + Album Review]
It’s incredibly exciting, and yet, surprising almost that UK house maestro Nic Fanciulli is just now releasing his debut record — especially after playing such a pivotal role in the UK underground scene over the years. Fans of the virtuoso are ensured that it is with his prolific touring life and keen propensity for considerate curation that the phrase, “ Good things come to those who wait,” is quite applicable.
Surely, in an increasingly instantly-gratified, widespread age of musical connection that is oftentimes driven by the release of EPs and singles, a full-length album is hardly ever expected from those who frequent the circuits.
Fanciulli is one such act. After all, the artist has been busy cutting his teeth into the underground circuit for some time now. One may expect that the artist would not have the time to write and record an extended, cohesive body of work.
However, it is with his undeviating modus operandi and a refusal to remain sonically stagnant that allotted the creation of his first-ever LP, My Heart. It is also with his personal experiences in contextualization and a cultivated understanding of the impacts of dance music — both inwardly and outwardly — that Fanciulli shines on such an undertaking.
“This project actually started around ten years ago in 2007, right after I was nominated for a Grammy. I was surrounded by so many talented artists that I felt I really wanted to push myself and produce an album.” – Nic Fanciulli
On My Heart, Fanciulli delves into new experimental waters. The house don succeeds in an exploratory venture by way of a pleasantly employed variety of sonic landscapes, explored moods, and equivocal emotions over the course of 16 tracks. Through this, he presents an amalgamation of club-ready tracks and more downtempo numbers for the at-home listener.
My Heart, if the name hadn’t already served as a prior indication for its respective listener, comes from a considerably personal place.
“The music and touring aspect of my life was amazing but I didn’t feel I could channel the positivity I felt there into anything substantial at the time. The idea behind making an album was always to create something strong and meaningful, I wanted to make something that sounded as good at the afterparty as it does in the car, something that becomes relevant to every situation you listened in.”
Several thought-provoking numbers particularly stand out among an album filled with a blend of influences. One such tune, “Little L,” featuring Eagles & Butterflies, is a sound employment of all that Fanciulli set out to explore in his record.
Released prior to the full album, “Little L” offers a glimpse into the deeply emotive psyche of Fanciulli.
“The project name, MY HEART, came about when I realized I couldn’t switch off, or do this project part time – I had to totally immerse myself in it, and give my heart to it in order to finish it in a way I was proud of…”
Collaborations have certainly been a recurrent theme throughout Fanciulli’s career. He also teams up with the esteemed Guy Gerber on “The Perfect Crime.” The number, in turn, exudes immense melancholy and euphoria.
It’s clear from the deliverance that the collaborations were all really organic. However, perhaps, the best testament to organic collaborations on the piece is Fanciulli’s piece with Gorillaz‘ Damon Albarn.
He humbly describes the experience: “The craziest collab was having Damon Albarn on the vocals for ‘Saying.’ I had just finished a remix for the Gorillaz, and they really liked it; the next day I went into the studio and thought ‘I’m going to make a record for him and see if he likes it’. Luckily his management called, said he loved it, and within a week it was finished! It’s surreal for me; this is a guy who I used to listen to when I was doing my exams at school, I must have been a fan for 20+ years.”
Indeed, My Heart is an illustrious presentation of guest collaborators, delving into the waters of Fanciulli’s highly polished production skills and opening up fans to the newfound lush sonic beaconing of his soul.
“The album is called My Heart because I put my heart into it, Fanciulli asserts. “It’s a reflection of everyone I’ve ever met, everywhere I’ve ever been, and I hope everyone that listens can find something that resonates with their heart in the music. ”
Featured Image courtesy of Nic Fanciulli