Red hot Italian DJ and production collective Aura Safari is back with a second full-length album, Island Dreams. It lands on Hell Yeah Recordings on September 15th and is another live and sun-kissed odyssey through balmy Mediterranean evenings, gorgeous sundown sessions and funky analogue grooves.
Andrea Moretti, Lorenzo Lavoratori, Daniele Melloni, Nicholas Iammatteo, Lorenzo Francioli, Ruggero Bonucci and Nicola Pitassio are Aura Safari, and between them they play drums, percussion, bass, keys, and guitar. They contributed to the first volume of the Buena Onda compilation in 2020 on this label, a year after serving up a debut album on London’s Church Records. Since then they have become ever more entrenched in their local scene in Perugia. They are skilled musicians and instrumentalists with an effortlessly charming sound and play summer sets at the Umbria Jazz Festival, winter warmers at the legendary Red Zone Club and host their own Tropical Climax parties each month in the town centre.
Aura Safari are also deep-digging music collectors who have extensive and far-reaching tastes. When cooking up their sounds they draw on everything from Afro to Italo, house to disco, 80s boogie to world music, jazz and Balearic beats. This new album shows that once more across four sides of vinyl that sweep you up and transport you to somewhere idyllic.
The title track kicks off with steamy Mediterranean grooves embellished with lush Rhodes chords and sprinkles of cosmic magic. ‘Sur Mon Balconnet’ then slips into dubbed-out disco territory with 80s synths and leggy drums while ‘Riserva Naturale’ is a new-age jazz house sound with majestic lead synths and heart-melting chords that speak of a sunset dance on the beach. ‘Onda’ has squelchy boogie bass with hip-swinging drums, ‘Wave Riding’ is a lo-fi funk excursion with hints of West Coast Californian swagger and ‘Magic Malbe’ is loose-limbed Balearica with clear blue skies and blissed-out chords.
‘Dancing in the Moonlight’ feat. Zeke Manyika has all the vibrant feelings of bubblegum pop with Afro vocals and steel drum sounds next to rich xylophone sounds. There is plenty of heat and exotic charm to the proto-Afro house of ‘Tropical Climax’ and as well as dub versions of ‘Sur Mon Balconnet’ and ‘Dancing in the Moonlight’ come the scuffed-up Dam-Funk style beats and boogie of ‘Disco Mantra’ before closer ‘Patagonia’ shuts down with elastic drums and bass and playful synth leads that send you home wanting more.
Island Dreams is a tropical escape to a rich world of fusion sounds that look back to go forwards. It’s a feel-good record to accompany hot nights and lazy afternoons, cocktails at dusk and dancing till dawn.
RICHARD DORFMEISTER/ KRUDER AND DORFMEISTER
Excellent summer vibes !
BILL BREWSTER/ DJ HISTORY
PHIL MISON / CANTOMA
Loving this album
PETE HERBERT / DISCO DEVIANCE
Wow really special this.
Loving the afro dub mix
HIATT DB / RHYTHM SECTION
Huge fan of their first release, this one does not disappoint. Balearic bliss for the Mediterranean of the mind. Beautiful!
JKRIV / RAZOR-N-TAPE
Dreamy summer vibes.
LUCA LOCATELLI/ MOPLEN
Lots of goodies right here, dancing into the moonlight is my cup of tea!
HECTOR ROMERO/ DEF MIX
I really like this in every way.
Interesting! Will be spinning!
SEAN BROSNAN/ FORWARD DISCO
This is balearic to the bone, i feel lie pulling up a sunlounger with cocktail in hand.
MARK BROADBENT/ PIKES HOTEL
Lovely usable Balearica that’ll fit finely and sublimely in and out of my dj sets around the island this next couple of months. Warm sounds lapping around my ears right now.
PASTA BOYS/ DJ RAME
This pure Class!
MAX P/ TANGRAM
What a mature work from Aura Safari. Keys and other live instruments are absolutely sublime.
DANNY ASHENDEN/ SLOTHBOOGIE
Ohhh this is sublime! All up in this one.
ANDY WILSON/ SONICA IBIZA
MASSIMILIANO PAGLIARA/ BLACK SPUMA
PAUL MORISSEY/ BOZAK
Nice balearic feels to this Patagonia and Island Dreams are the stand out tracks 🙂
MAX ESSA/ BONONO JAPAN
A wonderful album from beginning to end. Love it!
Fabulous release…All tracks…Love it!!
Magic 80’s funk-dreamy vibe! Seem to be a child again 🙂 Perfect for this summer. For sure we’ll play one of these tracks for intro set greetings to Aura Safari ! 10/10
WILLIE GRAFF/ THE STANDARD IBIZA
Such a nice album…Sounds like Balearic Boogie to me. All the cuts are really nice.
HARRI HARRIGAN/ SUB CLUB GLASGOW
STEFANO TUCCI/ TANGRAM
I follow and love Aura Safari music from day one. They are one of the best live/dj collective around and this collection of dreamy/jazzy/breezy tracks are here to confirm that. Big up to the amazing Hell Yeah records for releasing it!
GINO GRASSO/ BBE
Best work of the summer…. Really amazing… every track killer. Grande Marco Gallerani for the release on his label
JASON BOARDMAN/ AFCIONADO
100% love this, my favourite track is the OG version of Sur Mon Balconnet with its Compass Point Dub stylings but it’s a very well balanced and varied LP overall, hopefully the Aura Safari LP will receive similar attention to the Nu Guinea output as it’s at the same level.
OLIVIER CAVALLIER/ PLAYLISTER
Nice downtempo groove.