Review: As Innervisions looks forward to its 100th release in 2021, its new 'Limbo' various artists compilation marks a change within the label, club culture and the music industry at large, signifying how it will continue to evolve and adapt. Featuring ascending Bavarian Innellea on the evocative breaks of "The Invention Of Flying", Danish dancefloor drama expert Denis Horvat in fine form as always on "Unikum", Lake People, the alias of prolific Leipzig-based producer Martin Enke, with a typically ethereal outing titled "Divergence" and the ever reliable Aera with the serene futurist electro beats of "Shallows". To quote label boss Dixon regarding the release: 'The world is in limbo and going through a transition. So is Innervisions, building a bridge between how we have done things in the past, and how we want to do things in the future'.
Review: Munich-based Permanent Vacation perform their usual yearly ritual by serving up a bunch of essentials, with their seventh edition here including a whopping 25 tracks. Kicking things off in style is Madrilian producer Pional's uplifting anthem "Tempest", label chief Benjamin Froehlich appears with "Drawn From Memory" which receives an evocative rework by French legend I:Cube, while German nu-disco heroine Perel is on point as always with the neon-lit "Angelika". Elsewhere, Irish duo New Jackson present the glassy-eyed and bittersweet "Romancecar", label co-head Tom Bioly gives us the deep Italo vibe of "Night Heat", label staple Fort Romeau shows off his usual knack for emotive dancefloor drama on "Heaven & Earth", plus the worthy addition of Terr's dark disco delight "Have You Ever" (Dub Version).
Review: Aleph music chief Ralf Schmidt aka Aera is back on the esteemed Innervisions imprint with the Prana EP, which is imbued with the instincts of a storyteller across six sonically different yet interconnected micro-worlds. From the dreamy and sublime vibes of "Way Out" where tech house and 8-bit elements collide, to moments of cleverly crafted and emotive futurism that we've come to know and love from the German producer - which can he heard on riveting journeys like "Turning Machine" and "Little Smasher". It wouldn't be an Innervisions record without a bit blissed-out and melodic deep house, would it? "Brackets" has you covered on that front.
Review: Ralf Schmidt aka Aera is back on Permanent Vacation, with three dance versions from his recent album The Sound Path that was released earlier this year. The new interpretations go straight to your feet and shove you onto the dancefloor. From the shimmering and hypnotic dance mix of "The Dance Will" that injects a whole new form of magic into it than the original. There is also "May Your Heartflame Continue" (Dance mix) which takes a moody, brooding turn optimised for proper dancefloor drama and "Birds At The Lighthouse" going for a deep electro vibe in the fashion of early Carl Finlow.
Review: Following up some fantastic releases on Innervisions, Hivern Discs and of course his own Aleph Music imprint, Berlin based Aera returns with his second full length album since 2013. The Sound Path appears for Munich based Permanent Vacation and is described as his most coherent and personal work to date, incorporating new age, kraut, and ambient influences. Indeed there is quite the variety of moods and grooves featured on this opus: from the deep and contemplative electro of "Flowers Under Water" and "All The Birds" , or the techy balearic house of "Logic & Kindness" through to the straight up, evocative dancefloor journeys the German is renowned for- such as on "The Sun Will" or "Stitch In Time".
Review: It's that time again: Berlin institution Innervisions returns and rounds up this year's melodic techno futurists on Secret Weapons' tenth edition. Indeed it's a big one, but not with the usual suspects, would you believe. Take for instance Marc Romboy: the German tech house legend behind the respected Systematic imprint appears with the spacey and euphoric dancefloor drama of "Infrared", rising star of the Berlin scene Nitam (previously on Ostgut Ton sister label Unterton) appears also with the seething, late night adrenaline of "JS/42" which nails that Panorama Bar vibe so nicely. Elsewhere, the always impressive Southern Italian duo Underspreche make a welcome appearance with "From The Exotism To The Future" yet another example of their contorted take on Afro house, while minimal don Marc Houle reappears, with a nifty rework by German power duo Frankey & Sandrino on the epic journey of "Paligama"
Review: Ralf Schmidt aka Aera's last outing was on Innervisions and it's not hard to understand why he commands the support of Dixon as well as John Talabot's Hivern. Aera is a gloriously colourful smorgasbord of influences - including house, acid and trance. "Bibimbap" unfolds to metallic, futuristic drums accompanied by trippy acid lines and shiny trance synth. Meanwhile, "Thai Park" sounds like a logical but subtle conclusion to electro house, as Schmidt tweaks and teases a bass that modulates its tone against the backdrop of a rickety rhythm over the course of its eight-minute duration. By contrast, "Rotunde" is far lighter and dreamier: teeming with feather-weight, lullaby melodies and irresistible thumb-clicking percussion, it is nonetheless shot through with a bleeding bass. By the time he gets to the pulsing groove of "Lumen" - also remixed by La Gomera - the sound is tracky but still deliciously tripped out.
Review: On German producer and Aleph label founder Aera's latest release, the coalescing of influences from the past forty years of electronic music is audible. From the early electronic-style noises that warble over the bubbly acid pulse on the title track to the deeper than deep house of "Krystal Close" and the Mathew Jonson-sounding micro-trance melodies of "Keeping the Book", Running Hot is nothing if not adventurous and diverse. Innervisions also deserves praise for its choice of remixer; Steve Rachmad is not the most immediate name one would associate with the German label, but he does a fine job here, turning "Keeping the Book" into a deep, pulsing techno track, accentuating the original version's beautiful spacey-ness.
Review: Innervisions' Secret Weapons series is always worth a look, if only for the opportunity it gives to delve into Dixon's CD wallet and see what he's been hammering over the last six months. As usual, there's plenty of Grade A material to enjoy, from the undulating rhythms and drifting chords of Hunter Game's "Ice", to the forceful electronics, woozy pads and dreamy vocal snatches of Flowers & Sea Creatures' picturesque "Overworld". Elsewhere, Nu Tone delivers some intense afterparty fare in the shape of "Rumble", while Ripperton reaches for the lasers on the shuffling deep house gem "Unfold". Arguably best of all, though, is Aera's "Freak Wave", a midtempo shuffler that boasts a wonderfully warm, organic feel, with rich percussion and fuzzy analogue synth-work.