It’s been kind of silent up in here, too silent I’d say. Blame it on the holidays and transitioning into the new year. In any case it is time to get back to basics and see what 2015 has in store for us. Drumroll…

As I was busy sifting through all things audible and suitable last week, I received a digital promo pack from Berlin-based record label SKYAPNEA, featuring the young imprint’s sophomore release Marble Planet by Prism Pavilion, aka label head Giovanni Civitenga’s latest side project. Some of you may already be familiar with Gio’s eclectic and inquisitive approach to rhythm and sound patterns under his other moniker My Dry Wet Mess, including releases on Flying Lotus’s Brainfeeder label, Daedalus’s Magical Properties or the Fine Grains amalgam. This one however, strips it all down to the nitty-gritty in a 14-beat tribute to “the simple rough beauty of the hip hop instrumental”. Sign me up!

Marble Planet comprises a short but thoroughly engaging 20-minute offering of raw-ish beats, harmonic loops and resonant ideas, a metamorphic foundation of sorts. “This is the kind of stuff I started making when I was 15… to rap on… then my career on the mic came to an end and it took me another 15 years to feel the need of making rap beats again. It just feels right and it’s fun doing the very first thing again that made me wanna make music,” says Civitenga. In other words, just like marble itself, this is building material. Rest assured, while Prism Pavilion’s production is reminiscent of 90s hip hop in form, his collection of instrumentals reveals a multitude of vibrant colors, when you shine a light on it.

Also, be sure to tune in to SKYAPNEA’s bi-weekly ambient radio show on NTS Radio.