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  • Release Date 2017-04-28
  • Label Particles
  • Catalog PSI1714
Regulars on the Particles imprint, Rick Pier O'Neil and Desaturate produced dazzling summer heat through their "Crouched/Cursed" EP in July 2016. With "Crouched" already seeing a solo release and remixes from Matan Caspi and Stark and Sahin, it is now the turn of partner track, "Cursed" to receive similar remix treatment of its own.

Espen Gulbrandsen is no stranger to the modern dance industry. An artist from his country's Oslo capital, the Norwegian producer has been active in the commercial market, signing his music to labels since 2003. Indeed, as Recluse, with Thomas Nøkling, the duo signed a trio of singles that all ended up supported by Armin Van Buuren and a fourth, signed to Solarstone's Deep Blue, went on to feature on 2005's A State of Trance compilation. Writing under his own name from 2007, continued to see Espen find success with a catalogue of material that has found its way to the likes of Looq Records, Lost Language and Silk Music with consistent regularity, supported by the DJ glitterati from Blake Jarrell and Darin Epsilon to Ricky Ryan and James Grant.

A strong catalogue on Proton family labels has regularly featured Espen's work but a solo contribution to Particles via a remix of Omar El Gamal's "Escoz Me" is now followed up with a second. Providing an intricate percussive backdrop, full of claves and toms, the running bass line so prevalent on O'Neil and Desaturate's original makes its presence felt. Evolving elegantly, the presence of delay-laden, freeform and flowing melodies indicates Espen's signature production sound as his reworking of "Cursed" rises and falls with consummate ease. The resulting eight-minute piece is a joy to behold.

From America's City of Angels, US producer, Michael Sandler, is an artist with strong cross-genre appeal through his SAAND moniker. An artist with a considered approach to his craft and a "melancholic shade of house" to the fore, Sandler's work with Till Von Sein, Powel and Derek Marin have amply illustrated the depth of his talent, rubber stamped with recognition from Beatport as "Breakthrough Artist of 2015". His work signed to some of the leading underground imprints, Dilate, Motek Music and Union Jack Records have all featured his music while the "Mysterious Power" EP and "Tien Que Bajar", appeared on the Sol Selectas, 2016 Beatport crowned best-selling deep house label and number one "Summer Sol" album.

A single remix of Orsen's "Elysium", lit up Particles in August 2016 and it is thus with great pleasure that we welcome back SAAND to the label. Reworking "Cursed", SAAND takes a typically mature deep house sound to O'Neil and Desaturate's track. A rich and vibrant percussive shell encapsulates proceedings, driving the track forward with unrelenting precision and force. Sub bass and seismic kick add to the groove while a nod to the original's bass line is found at the mid-point breakdown. Amid a white-noise wash of pulsating pads and middle-eastern rhythms, SAAND has created an innovative rework that is sure to fill club floors and festivals across the globe.

Good fortune has certainly favoured Rick Pier O'Neil and Desaturate as "Cursed" finds magical remixes from Espen and SAAND.

Directed by Jay Epoch
AandR by Marina Gerardi
Mastered by Cid Inc.
Design by Ben Mautner
Text by James Warren