In his quest for notoriety in a world increasingly filled with superficiality, Brazilian DJ and producer Vicente Amadeo aka Art In Motion’s main tool is his insatiable musical appetite. In 2011, he founded the label Plano B Records, which recently reached its 100th release with his EP Arado, a sound synthesis of his current musical essence that flirts between ambient music and melodic house with organic, progressive and hypnotic touches.
After a long period living in Berlin, the artist is now based in Portugal, where he is finishing his master’s degree in Music and Technology, as he is a true lover of modular synths, another characteristic very present in his sound. During his career, his debut album “Llankay” stands out, which at the time, released in 2015, showed his maturity in the studios and defined a new musical direction, exploring the more intricate and emotional side of electronic music.
Filled with news on the way, we took a few minutes to chat with Vicente, who told us about his plans for 2024 and the new projects he’s working on in search of new horizons.
Hello, Vicente! Thank you very much for meeting us. Where are you talking from, and what have you been up to over the last few weeks?
Art In Motion: Hello, thank you very much for having me. In 2021 I moved to Portugal and I currently live near Lisbon. Lately I’ve been focusing a lot on finishing my master’s thesis. In the studio, my time is divided between productions for a new project, the line-up of 3 labels, Plano B, Living like Birds & Ikigai for next year and my mixing work that I do for other artists.
You’ve just released the Arado EP, which marks the 100th release on your label Plano B Records. What’s going on in your head (and heart) at the moment?
Art In Motion: It’s funny to think that after the pandemic we even thought about shutting down the label. I was quite distressed by the idea. It was a time when I got in touch with a lot of people who had been part of the label over the years and after that period I was able to calmly reflect on our whole journey and how incredible it had all been. So many dear people I’ve met, so many places that music and the label have taken me. I’m very happy when I look back at this timeline, I’m glad we didn’t give up. And now I’m feeling so refreshed that we’re going to open another record label.
Looking at the sound of the EP, we notice a greater flirtation with ambient music, without neglecting a hypnotic progression… what atmosphere did you want to create in this work? Does it accurately reflect your current moment as a producer?
Art In Motion: I’ve been listening to and producing a lot of ambient techno, dub techno and ambient music in general. As I’ve always liked to work with melodies and now with the modular, it was a natural and very interesting process to take the drums out of the songs and work on the arrangement with just a few elements. Over the course of a week I made some songs with the same 4 voices (oscillators) as my modular, recorded different takes of each song and then finalized them on the computer.
Can you tell us a bit more about the equipment you used? We know you have an attraction to modular synths… how was the creative process leading up to the finalization of the tracks?
Art In Motion: The three tracks on the EP were produced with the same hardware, my modular eurorack, a Roland SH2 synthesizer and the roland TR8S drum machine.
On the ambient track, A Glimpse of Existence, the process was a little different from the others. I recorded several takes of the modular on the computer and with each take I improved something, be it the sequence of notes, timbres, arrangement or textures. For the final take, I recorded the 4 separate channels simultaneously into my DAW, Cubase, and then made minor edits to the arrangement and finalized the mix.
Until a while ago you lived in Berlin, but now you’re in Lisbon. How has this change been for you? What are the best aspects of this transition, whether in your professional career or even in your personal life?
Art In Motion: Berlin for anyone who likes electronic music is like Disney for a child. It’s incredible, not just the parties and clubs, but also the conferences, studios, record stores, equipment fairs and the amount of producers in the city. There’s a lot of exchange. Lisbon has been extremely important to me on a personal level, the quality of life is great, I’ve moved back to the seaside, I have good friends and lots of new parties coming to town. Although it’s a small city, there’s plenty of room to grow and develop.
As well as Plano B Records, you also run the sublabel Living Like Birds. What is the philosophy behind each of them? Are the curatorial criteria different?
Art In Motion: Yes, Living Like Birds came about when I was living in the hills of Rio during the pandemic. The idea was to have a sound geared towards indie dance, breaks, electronica. Something more open than the melodic and progressive sound we released on Plano B. We also opened up space at Living for new members.
We know you have ambitious plans ahead, both for your personal project and for new initiatives. What is already concrete that you can tell the public?
Art In Motion: I’m finally putting together my live show and testing how I’m going to start presenting it. I’m also working on a new ambient techno project where I should be releasing an album early next year on my new label, Ikigai, with my long-time friend and producer Steve Menta. Both Plano B and Living like Birds are due for a few changes, we’re going to revamp some things in the brands such as visuals, promos and communication.
Finally, a few quick questions. What’s your favorite launch and why?
Art In Motion: Can I name two? On a personal level, it was launching my project, Akken, with Pedro Cruz, on the label. Pedro was my first mentor, so years later having the pleasure of exchanging, producing and creating a project with him was symbolic for me.
On a professional level, Tony Casanova’s remix of Jacarandá. As well as being an artist I admire, it was the track I played the most on the label. As well as having incredible memories playing it on the dancefloor, we also had a close-knit team of artists and a really nice moment within the label.
What advice would you give to anyone starting their own label?
Art In Motion: Good planning, consistency, patience, partnerships and a lot of love.
What would you change about the industry if you could change anything?
Art In Motion: As my base is music production, better remuneration or revenue from music sales or streaming would be interesting for record producers. We’re living through a very cool moment of inclusion, but of course there’s still a lot of work to do. Imagine if we had public money or more access to sponsorships for the development of smaller, independent scenes, be they festivals or record labels, but which ultimately foster culture and other local areas.
An artist you’d like to release on Plano B Records?
Art In Motion: Sebastian Mullaert.
A final message to the public who have read this far…
Art In Motion: Many thanks to everyone who has followed the history and evolution of Plano B Records and my projects. And of course to everyone who is reading this. We keep believing, improving and working to plant more good things in this world.