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Yarni Pigna

Sheffield-based producer Yarni releases his sophomore LP for EMK, and my goodness, it's a good one.


Released: 10 June 2022

I was considerably impressed by Yarni's (AKA Benjamin Harris) 2021 LP Boro, which oozed class and maturity. Ahead of this review I dipped back into that record to see how things had changed since his excellent debut. It was good to revisit and his follow-up is (as expected) even more impressive.

There's a richness to his productions, and the confidence Yarni hopefully captured with Boro has been nurtured and is present from the start with the magnificent opener 'Midnight Gateway'. It's a jazz-funk disco winner that's beautiful and timeless, the kind of track you would savour on a sunny afternoon at a festival. Afrobeat and jazz influences are more notable on this release but these are beyond pale imitations – this is the real deal.

Accompanied by a nine-person ensemble, Yarni has honed his artform to take the best from the remotely recorded live cuts and craft them into something new without losing any of the original energy. Other stand-out moments include the sun-drenched psychedelic soul of 'Lady' featuring the voice of Jeff Darko. Where the horn-driven, funk afrobeat groove of 'Nova' lifts you into euphoria, the cosmic trip on 'The Astral' is just in another universe.

Yarni champions a diverse array sounds, from disco to afrobeat, from jazz to funk, and in truth has mastered the lot. With two strong albums under his wing and attention by the likes of Luke Una and Nemone, one can’t help but think invitations to festivals, gigs, remixes and other productions will multiply – and rightly so.