Audiophile presents: INZO (Earth Magic Tour)
For INZO, there’s a thrill in possibility. The Denver-based electronic artist is less concerned with labels and more with creating immaculate vibes and moving melodies. “If I could make any andevery genre,” he says, “I would.” He lives up to that mission through luminescent synth lines thatflutter through his tracks like fireflies, chest-caving bass, and wistful, nostalgic vocal samples.
Through it all, no matter what sounds and styles he chooses, he has a constant goal: He wants you to feel something. “If you’re crying, if you’re having a fun time, if you’re having an epiphany at that moment,” INZO says, “sad, happy, whatever – I just want my music to be an experience.”
Having last released music in 2020, INZO is currently working on bringing his new and varied experiences to life. In addition to a collaborative EP with fellow dance experimenter LSDream, he’s preparing his solo EP, Earth Magic. Created during lockdown, its tracks are more cinematic and calmer, with lo-fi beats, piano breakdowns, and transcendent synth beams—a byproduct of his renewed focus on health and wellness. Making music itself has become therapeutic for INZO, so it’s fitting that his new work reflects that cozy headspace. As much as he enjoys playing live, he especially loves the quieter, more intimate moments of listening back to a track he’s made for the first time and realizing it’s exactly what he’d envisioned. “I like to make music for other people to enjoy,” he says, “but at the end of the day it’s an expression of me.” Growing up in Chicago, INZO, born Mike Inzano, seemed destined for music. When he was 4 years old, his parents enrolled him in piano lessons where he studied classical greats like Beethoven; at 6, he chose to learn drums inspired by rock groups like Red Hot Chili Peppers. In high school, Inzano found increasing success as part of a metal band. When a potentially career making opportunity to play Warped Tour fell through, he took it as a sign to move on, goto college, and pursue a medical career. But freshman year, he found rave culture, which pulled him back in. Instead of attending classes, Inzano camped out in the campus music studio andtaught himself production, eventually leaving school behind to pursue it full-time.
For the next two years, INZO tried on different styles, hopping from soaring progressive house (“High Above”) and raucous electro house (“Brocaine Camaro”) to a pop-rock-electronic hybrid(“Young Heart”). In 2017, he released the single “Visionaries,” a hazy track with crashing waves of bass and warm, cascading synth drops. Somewhere in its mellow ambiance and ethereal arrangements, something clicked. “That was the first time I was sure of my musical identity,” here calls. “Who I wanted to be, the music I wanted to make, the sound I wanted to capture.”Following that instinct served INZO well. His next single, 2018’s introspective “Overthinker,” was his most successful to date, recently surpassing 52 million Spotify streams. The bass-heavy track builds on atmosphere, sampling a speech by philosopher Alan Watts that cuts through the dreamy melodies and euphoric synth blooms with sobering musings. Then, inspired to shake up his sound, INZO flexed his range on his 2019 debut EP, Multiverse, delivering stuttering funk on “Let It Slide,” laser-charged heaviness on “Y,” and blindingly bright melodies on the title track.
As INZO prepares new music, he’s still keen on keeping people guessing. The tracks he’s making now are more vivid, softer, and prettier, but he hints at troves of unreleased tracks approaching heavier and more experimental territory—and even more surprise collaborations. What will he put out next? With INZO, anything is possible as long as it’s an experience.