R&S and cutting-edge electronic music are as synonymous as Messi and football. You can barely speak of  one without mentioning the other, such is the label’s impact on the scene over the last 40 years. To  mark the momentous occasion, Renaat Vandepapeliere’s Belgian powerhouse is doing what it does best:  serving up In Order To Dance 4.0, a brand-new installment in its legendary series that once again  showcases new music from a mix of familiar names alongside next-generation artists. It is a timely  reminder of where the label has come from and where it is going next. 

The years in between have seen the label launch artists like James Blake, Lone and Blawan, offer a  European home to US greats like Derrick May and Joey Beltram (whose classic ‘Energy Flash’ on R&S  remains one of techno’s biggest-ever tunes) and even work with the untouchable Aphex Twin, all while  offering an endlessly high-quality stream of innovative techno. More recently the sounds have evolved  into hip-hop and lo-fi soul, but the label’s famous prancing horse logo remains a respected stamp of  authority.  

The first In Order To Dance compilation came back in 1989 and showcased the best in-house and new  beat, the latter of which being a homegrown Belgian sound that is very much back in fashion today. The  artists on that album were all A&Red by Vandepapeliere’s expert ear, and it is that same ear that has carefully curated this latest collection. 

Hyphen kicks off this new era with the stirring electronic soul of ‘Winter Sky’. It’s awash with melodic  beauty and elegant beats that get you on your toes before Paul Roux’s ‘Baptéme’ leads you inwards. The  smeared chords convey brokenhearted melancholy over heavy broken beats. After that artful start,  Subject 13 & Conscious Route showcase R&S’s other side: an irresistible dance floor sensibility with  sleazy bars over ghetto beats. There is skewed futurism to the frosty hip hop of Nphonix & Matrika’s  ‘Rumble Around’ which embodies the evolution of the R&S sound, while Saytek’s ‘IYNDUB01 (Live)’  douses you in warm dub currents as you gaze off to the stars. 

The mid-point is marked by the playful melodies and vocals of ‘Did This’, a truly original cut from Dino  Lenny who has been embedded in the scene now for 30 years. Label purists will love the trio of tracks  that follow and very much capture the essence of R&S: there are the twisted beats and cosmic synth  sorcery of VROMM’s ‘Red Tuna’, punchy techno elegance of Insider’s ‘Something Flash’ and raved-up  energy of ‘Hold On’ by Pascal Nuzzo. Things get even more visceral and direct with the frazzled jungle  

rhythms supplied by Ultimatum on “Som.1” before lending way to the soulful breaks and head clearing  chords courtesy of Dharma’s “Structured Chaos”. Adam Antine’s ‘Sortavala’ is a funky breaks workout  and Acidulant “closes things out with a coruscated acid-electro cut designed to rip up the floor. The first  In Order to Dance compilation was pivotal in the early evolution of electronic music, and 40 years on this  installment is just as important.  

As an accompaniment to the new wave of ‘In Order To Dance 4.0’, a series of cutting-edge music videos  have been produced. Acclaimed artists and video directors, including Alessandro Amaducci, Ben  Marlowe, and Gala Mirissa, have all stamped their digital artistic visions onto these stunning  compositions, syncing audio and visual for a multi-sensory experience. 

Pre save it here.