Both on his own and as one-half of the duo Alter Ego alongside Jorn Elling Wuttke, Frankfurt-based electronic producer Roman Flugel has spent the last two decades carving out a distinct presence amongst the European techno scene. A year on from his excellent ‘Happiness Is Happening’ album, this latest double 12” vinyl EP on Hypercolour ‘Monday Brain’ sees Flugel offering up six new tracks. ‘Teenage Engineering’ opens proceedings on a comparatively light and airy note as crisp tech-house rhythms glide against a lush backdrop of shimmering synth trails and cowbell percussion, the presence of elegantly rolling piano keys adding some darker undertones to the effortlessly rolling grooves.
If the aforementioned track calls to mind hints of Kompakt’s similarly refined aesthetic, ‘Man Sees The Face, God Sees The Heart’ gets more stripped-down and spacious, sending gritty snares flickering against noodling analogue bass synths, sampled dialtones and wafting ambient pads in a manner that evokes classic early nineties ambient-house ala The Orb or System 7. Elsewhere, ‘Church Of Dork’ kicks the pace up a few notches as harsh electro snares click against burbling analogue bass tones and handclaps in what’s easily one of the grittier offerings here, before ‘Vegetarian Leather Jackets’ sends things surging off into a rush of eerie bleeps and phased electronic effects as steel-edged snares add an undertone of menace in what’s perhaps the one truly dancefloor-focussed moment to be found here. An excellent EP from Roman Flugel that for the most part sets the controls for the headphones rather than the feet.