Words on contemporary releases. Seeking to offer an honest description of works which manage to exist in their own space and time.
VA – 5 Years In Love With Involve – Involve Records 
Reviewed by Harry Castle
The Involve Records imprint is a Madrid based label which has racked up a solid list of releases since its launch in 2012. Spain’s answer to the underground acid sound that we have come to love. They boast a well-defined selection of infamous producers to their releases; including the likes of the late Andreas Gehm, Z.I.P.P.O, Boston 168 and Jeroen Search. The celebration of 5 years running could not be memorialized any better than with this massive VA compilation. With a melding of old school and new school acid and rave inspired productions, this compilation shows how versatile and enticing techno can be in 2017.
The track list is a dirty trip from some of the most interesting producers of the past 5 years.
- _Asstnt & Roll Dann – Chronicle of a Love Foretold
- Yotam Avni – Involve
- Alien Rain – Space Age
- Boston 168 – 1989
- Jeroen Search – The Regions Beneath
- Bambounou – Tolerant Hedonism
- FJAAK – The Tube
- Regal – Send Nudes
- Cosmin TRG – Zbor
- Exilles – The Hidden Grove
- Fabrizio Rat – Felt
- Z.I.P.P.O – Falling
Involve Records grounds itself on the values of its founder Regal and he has had an active part in turning Involve in to one of the hallmarks of acid techno on a global scale. We are not surprised to find one of his own tracks on the menu for this release as he has unsurprisingly become somewhat synonymous with the Involve Records sound. In fact, their first ever release was Regals second physical EP. Send Nudes is an old school UK hardcore inspired rave track with an incredibly addictive hook that would send shockwaves through any clubs’ sound system. A tribute to the roots of the machine funk music of the 90s.
Alien Rain’s celestial acid production Space Age is what it says on the tin, a space age track that is akin to his earlier work which destroyed warehouses 5 years ago. In fact, Milton Bradley’s acid influenced moniker allowed for him to shape his acid techno sound. From an old school sound to Boston 168’s 1989, we are bustled through the decades of rave. The arpeggiated, dripping wet acid tune pulls psychedelic and industrial elements into the mix and slaps us with a comforting, otherworldly tune. The release continues with Bambounou who brought to life an entrancing tribal journey when he generated Tolerant Hedonism rattling with ritualistic purpose. This stunning tribal techno track is a sequenced power trip through hollow percussion elements and intricate drum loops.
Our last track of choice for this powerful 5 year compilation is Fjaaks offering of wide kicks and synth mayhem. Only they could do it like this. Cheeky rhythms keep The Tube moving forward with regular assertions of tension breaking drops. Once again this trio assert themselves as if deservedly peacocking with their stellar analog productions. None of the tracks are to be passed over. 5 Years in Love with Involve is a holistic unrelenting trip through five years of groundbreaking Techno music. All we can hope for is that this dissection of rave continues through 2018.