Founded in 2007 by the Zenker Brothers out of Munich, Ilian Tape has successfully carved out its own niche when it comes to warehouse inspired techno and breakbeat electro. Helping spawn the careers of artists like Andrea and Stenny, to the Zenker Brothers themselves, Ilian Tape is responsible for the release of Skee Mask’s entire solo output - namely his debut album Shred and 2021’s Pool - to courting the respect and subsequent music of old school legends like Roger 23 and Surgeon. With the likes of Pessimist, Etch and Walton helping spearhead a new and UK inspired approach to the Ilian Tape sound, there’s no denying a new vanguard in cutting edge dance music has arrived.
Review: We've seen quite the evolution of Ilian Tape's sound over the past 18 months with the label expanding and expressing new sounds and remits by welcoming a new fold of artists to include Pessimist, Etch, Walton and Konrad Wehrmeister. The latest to be added to this list is sonic and performance artist, new technologies researcher and gender studies transgressive Katatonic Silentio. Previously lurking in the outsider realms of experimental dance music, the artist arrives on Illian Tape with a lush, heavy and experimental EP full of field recordings, foley sound and out there drum patterns & spaced-out percussion. With some edgier electro, halftime stepping grooves and refined industrial beats coming out of "On The Edge Of Unthought State" and "Midnight Train Breaking Through" - to the beatles yet aggressive sounds of "Shy Fy" - it's "Cartography Of Nowhere" and "Tabula Rasa" that really capture the imagination here. Get to know.
Review: Surgeon follows the Golden Sea release on Ilian Tape from earlier this year with this fine four-tracker. "Winged Assassin" is a rolling, stepping affair that resounds to acid-soaked blips and woozy synths. In contrast on "Crater 101", there is a harder sound audible, with visceral kicks underpinning noisy stabs and sheets of steely percussion. But the UK techno veteran is in less abrasive form than usual on this release, and "Place of Angels" resounds to a murky bass and squelching tones. On the title track, Surgeon ventures even farther from the techno path, delivering an abstract atmospheric composition that blurs the boundaries between electronic and post-rock's stream of consciousness.
Review: Turin techno stalwart Andrea has been serving up slabs of goodness on Ilian Tape since way back in 2012, though "Ritorno" is remarkably his very first full-length excursion. The 12 track set is far more varied than his fine club-focused singles, with the Italian variously turning his hand to swelling, Global Communication style ambient techno ("Attimo"), ultra-deep breakbeat dreaminess ("SKLYN"), melodious, jungle-influenced IDM ("LS September"), bassbin rattlers ("TrackQY", the skittish brilliance of moody roller "Reinf"), dreamy soundscape techno ("LG_Amb"), angular fusions of bass music and dark Italo-techno ("Drumzzy") and picturesque ambient dub slow jams ("Twin Forests").
Review: New Andrea material on Ilian Tape - incoming! The mysterious techno maverick returns to the German imprint with four new slices of sci-fi funk, packaged in the artist's usual blend of synth experimentation and 90s d&b flavours. "20th November" is a booming, piledriver of a tune suited to the world's biggest dancefloors, while "Layer" breaks the groove down with heavier injections of breaks and growling bass tones. Then comes "Radiant", a beat-heavy, dubwise joint that reminds us of Shed's Head High material, leaving "Remade" to stutter in space with its off-kilter beats and glitchy percussion swings. Masterful.