Sascha Funke, one of Germany's greatest techno auteurs and the genius behind best-selling records like Bravo or Mango (BPC 167CD/LP), has some pretty big news. And it's not about some one-off band project, but a partnership meant to stay. As Saschienne, Sascha has formed a duo extraordinaire with multi-talented instrumentalist, singer and wife Julienne Dessagne, displaying an expressivity previously unknown to anyone following his solo work. That said, Sascha is no stranger to expressive depths, with his earliest tracks already oscillating between plucked introspection and purposeful anthems. His 1999 career debut single Campus was released on Kompakt at number 13 in the label's catalog, in this case bringing only good luck to the then-rookie producer, since he went on to produce one masterpiece after another. Now, Sascha Funke returns to his very first label: after 13 years as a techno producer, Sascha has, thanks to Julienne, rediscovered the joy of the early days in the studio. Both artists describe not only a mere change in studio ergonomics, but the force of love ripping apart old constructs. As a trained piano player and former semi-professional contemporary dancer, Julienne was exposed to classical and contemporary music early on in her life. Praising the intricate work of composers like Philip Glass or Louis Sclavis, it shouldn't come as a surprise that she fell in love with the challenging, unpredictable club sound from Optimo's JD Twitch & JG Wilkes, her first real club experience in the UK. She then went on to work for prestigious Soma Records and London's legendary Fabric Club. All those are influences tightly woven into the sound of Saschienne. Far away from the romantic hokum of crude feel-good songwriting, they not only focus on the harmony and bliss, but explore the discord, the misunderstandings that great love brings with it. Saschienne's debut release Unknown maintains the perfect balance between intimate idiosyncracies and public formatting. Going from quickly sketched chords and whispered consonants to a full-blown thunderstorm in just a matter of a few tracks, it's a hypnotic road-movie worthy of Bonnie & Clyde. Gaining momentum as a marathon runner would, Saschienne's music reaches out further and further, always fascinated of what might be behind the next curve.