Plano B Records is an independent record label specialized in underground dance music with an experimental and organic flair. Founded in 2011 by the Brazilian producer Art in Motion as a place to release his own music, the label has established a solid catalog showcasing emerging artists from around the world striving to break traditional paradigms on a quest for originality. With over 80 releases on their catalog, Plano B Records built a reputation as a solid imprint focused on releasing fresh and dynamic tunes without following commercial trends or compromising on quality.
Da Le – “Sons of Orula” (on “8” by Plano B)
To celebrate their eighth anniversary, the label just released the compilation entitled 8: a collection of five tracks that encapsulates a strong sonic aesthetic and travels through different moods and styles but still maintaining the same vision and aural identity. The tunes on VIII feature five different upcoming artists from five different countries showing that diversity, friendship & unification still matters.
We had the opportunity to sit down with Art in Motion and talk about his journey with Plano B – its past, present, and future – and the intricacies of running an independent record label. Read it below.
8 years is a long time, the world has changed so did the music industry. How did The Label’s music identity developed throughout this period?
I think the sound has changed and my perception developed over the last years. I started releasing music as Amadeo, doing tech house/minimal tracks, and by then my friends were also doing the same style. Over the years, I felt I wanted to express myself differently by using more melodies and with a progressive way on telling stories.
The compilation ‘8’ – released last Monday to celebrate Plano B’s anniversary – brings an interesting mix of producers from Cuba, Australia, Costa Rica, Israel, and Brazil. Tell us a bit about this mix and what did you have in mind when curating this VA.
Most of our previous compilations consisted of only Brazilian producers but now we have been receiving many demos from all over the world which is pretty awesome. I decided to make a smaller compilation with tracks that I am really feeling it and which show our diversity.
How many releases did Plano B put out during this time? And which releases would you say are the most iconic and representative of the label’s trajectory?
We are heading to 80 releases at the end of the year. One of my favorites releases is definitely the timeless Akken Rising it is also the top seller track on the label.
How does your work as Art in Motion influence Plano B’s artistic directions? And how does your perspective as a label-owner influence your journey as an artist?
Well, I ‘ve been always a big fan of artists that got a strong identity, the ones who have something to say through their music. I think it’s something I look for but unfortunately, we get many demos that all sound the same. As I said previously, my artist vision definitely influences the label but I also learn a lot with it.
You moved to Berlin while Thiago Freitas aka lagon, the other half of Plano B, is still based in Rio. What attracted you to Berlin and how is this relationship with your partner?
I ‘ve been coming to Berlin for years and I’m still amazed about how they make everything with such a high level of professionalism. Many things attracted me this city, so many clubs, artists, agencies, labels… Everything is here! Thiago is in Rio and has been super busy with his main job right now, so we are trying to do as much as we can in terms of dividing tasks and sharing responsibilities. It is fantastic to work with someone you can trust, who share some functions, put out some goals and bring new ideas to the table.
We noticed that you guys deliver a very consistent and well-thought visual identity, strengthening the careful curation of sounds and textures. Is music the only thing that matters? And who is the guy behind your visuals?
I do better expressing myself through the music and I think that is how the label also works. We are not worried on being so flawless but would be nice to have a better structure. Usually, I have the visual concepts in my head and keep sending a lot of references to our designer, Giovanni Fernandes from dotstudio. He’s great! He is with us since the beginning of the label.
Looking back at these 8 years, what would have done differently and which was the main lesson learned?
Everything was pretty new for me back then, I wasn’t really a DJ or a music business guy, I just wanted a platform to release mine and my friend’s music. I think I would make things more organized and a better curation. Also, now I know is very important to have a team where everybody is connected and motivated to work.
Let’s finish with a cliché question: What can we expect from Plano B in the short-term and where do you see the label in the next 8 years?
I think consistency is the key. We will focus on working with more creative producers. Also organizing showcases is something that is on our radar. We have no big ambitions but we keep going and growing in a natural way .