Rosati – “First Impression” (dolly) [February 23, 2024]

DJing and producing dance music is a lot like cooking. It might seem simple at first, but mastery requires understanding how ingredients mix together, proper timing, and knowing how to use the tools. A great chef can transform a seemingly ordinary recipe into an amazing meal with a hot pan and a sharp knife—and similarly with music—a skilled DJ or producer can activate the same pleasure centers in the brain as eating a delicious dish.

True to his Italian roots, Francesco Rosati enjoys cooking as well as discovering new cultures through cuisine. That, and he also loves to serve up his signature style of Techno to the delights of clubbers. Rosati’s freshest batch of banging beats, “First Impression,” is the third installment to Steffi’s “These Streets” series on her imprint, dolly. Named in honor of the immediate connection Steffi and Rosati formed at a gig in Manchester, “First Impression” continues the label’s keen curatorial approach toward timeless Techno with a fantastic four-tracker EP.

Writing for this release began back in 2021 after Rosati and Steffi’s initial meeting and exchanging of demos, but it proved to be a lengthy refining process to achieve the EP’s current level of quality. Good things really do take time, especially when an artist demands a high standard of themselves creatively. Tight, snappy, but still with plenty of thump, Rosati rose to the challenge of tapping into the nostalgic revival of 90s and 00s sounds while simultaneously taking advantage of all the modern tools of the trade.

The opener, titled “Bloody Cash” (and its catchy synth stab), is an amped-up homage to a track by Rosati’s fellow countryman and one of his personal inspirational figures, Marco Carola. The punchy groover “Inside” is a satisfying second course with shimmery synths drizzled over a robust rhythm section, kick and bass perfectly balanced, while hints of a vocal linger and loop around in the background. Rosati goes for gold on “Midas Touch”; and finally, perhaps as a clever joke, the sweet and shuffling “First Impression” title track is offered for dessert, suggesting he has no desire to be another flash in the pan producer in today’s fast food Techno scene.

Few things have the unique ability to bring people together quite like food or music, and Francesco Rosati knows this all too well. Just like Nona’s lasagna, sometimes great things require years of experience and careful preparation to achieve something so elegantly layered. Rosati’s thoughtfulness in his production and track structures show signs of his other musical influences, like Classical, Soul, and Jazz, that subtly shine without losing that Techno groove. Fresh off his debut of rattling the hallowed halls of Berghain and with another release on the horizon in mid-May, if you can’t stand the heat, stay out of his kitchen, because Rosati is cookin’ right now. 

-Alex Dahm

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