After almost 13 successful years in the Swedish music industry, producer & artist William Fredriksson felt he was losing the passion for music. He had left his solo artist career behind him several years earlier, despite selling gold, and was starting to feel less and less motivated in his production – he needed a change. He recently returned under the moniker, Will Laroca, who’s recent debut single “Holy Ones,” was a stunning pop-driven EDM track with an inspirational and spiritual message, received high praise from critics & media outlets, fellow DJs, and music lovers alike.
“The transition into house music came from a genuine interest in mixing different music styles and experimenting with different tempos and genres. Because of my hip-hop background with very meaningful and personal text and content, it came naturally to me to mix them and create my own take on EDM with deep lyrics. I’m a musician with the greatest respect for the art of music. The possibility to express emotions, dreams and thoughts through a song is what drives me. I basically fell in love with making melodies.” – Will Laroca
Now, he’s back with an exhilarating new single, “Northern Lights“, signed to Virgin Music Sweden, drawing inspiration from his Swedish heritage and the natural light phenomenon. It’s a addicting slap house tune powered by bright violin melodies, inspired by old Swedish folk music, hailing back to the 14 & 15th centuries, as well as the ancient Old Norse musical style from medieval times. “Northern Lights” sends the message that even when you’re in the coldest and darkest of places – the northern light serves as a metaphor for hope.
“The Northern Lights is a metaphor for the guiding light of positivity I felt when I was able to bring myself from a dark place. To me it was with the help of my faith, but for others it can be something else, the positive force that has the power to guide you through tough times.” – Will Laroca
Two Sundays ago, a little over 3,000 people crowded into the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles to celebrate the tenth anniversary of one of the most beloved albums in electronic music, Clarity by Zedd. The debut album from the German-Russian/American producer featured some incredible and long-lasting hits including “Shave It Up,” “Spectrum,” and of course the title track, “Clarity.” The deluxe edition also included the hit “Stay The Night.”
When the show was announced, I was immediately skeptical of how a typical EDM crowd would act, or interact, with a live orchestral, sit-down performance of one of their favorite albums, especially without any vocalist appearances. I was even more looking forward to how people would be dressed — considering the typical EDM fashion at shows and festivals, this setting called for a bit more formality. No one arrived in a full suit and tie ensemble or flowing gowns, but there weren’t any pashminas, either.
The performance began without much formal introduction from Zedd or the maestro. A simple walk onto stage as he sat at the large piano at the front of the orchestra signaled the beginning and we were off to the races. Zedd and the orchestra followed the original tracklist of the album, moving from “Hourglass” to “Shave It Up” to “Spectrum” and so on.
Of course, when they reached “Clarity,” everyone who had been told to refrain from recording subtly (or not so subtly) pulled out their phones and grabbed their 15-second story for Instagram as the violins emulated, to the best of their ability, Foxes’ voice.
Even to massive Zedd fans, who by current standards began listening during his True Colors era, the latter half of Clarity wasn’t as well known. You could feel, even as the orchestra and Zedd hit their stride in the performance, that the crowd was marginally less engaged as they’d probably heard their favorite song and were just along for the ride for the remaining five songs.
After approximately 45 minutes, after “Epos” had concluded, Zedd, the maestro, and the orchestra took their bows and Zedd and the maestro walked off stage. Of course, an encore was coming and they played “Stay The Night,” at which point the crowd finally felt bold enough to sing along themselves. Again, the two walked off stage and the deafening roar of the crowd brought them back once again, for which they performed “Alive.”
Again, they walked off stage, and again, the roar of the crowd brought them back one final time as Zedd told the crowd they were out of songs, but since everyone was finally feeling so comfortable, they would play “Clarity” once again, and this time, to sing along.
The energy at this point was electric and all house rules were thrown out the window. Phones shot up to record, the crowd stood and sang, it felt like a more “usual” EDM show, albeit with a 50-piece orchestra rather than a couple CDJs and mixer.
Throughout the performance, one sentence kept echoing in my head: “They are not artists because nobody can play the guitar.”
The iconic line from “Rock n’ Roll (Will Take You to the Mountain)” by Skrillex, originally pulled from this video, makes fun of the fact that producers work primarily on laptops and computers with computer generated sounds. The ignorance comes into play when one doesn’t realize that those sounds are emulated — they have to come from something, somewhere, some reference. With Zedd’s early music especially, and given his pedigree as a talented “real” musician, it’s no surprise that his music could be translated to an orchestral performance.
As the cellos, violins, brass and horns, and everything else came into play throughout the performance, I kept thinking how if that man in the video were to see this, he might change his mind, and others might, too.
The music we hear a DJ play at festivals might have been created on a Windows 95 or a new MacBook Pro, or perhaps sampled from the electrical signals of plants, but it’s still music whether you see a guitar or not.
Growing up with a strong background in classical music, ALESSA.A placed at the top of western Japan for young pianist competitions. Her name quickly spread throughout the classical music community. Using her wide fanbase, ALESSA.A debuted as a DJ at the Thailand Full Moon Party in March 2019. Following this performance, she made a big leap to expand her musical influences across China. To add to her distinguished resume, ALESSA.A also held the first collaboration concert between an orchestra and a DJ in Japan referred to as “Japan Century Orchestra”. The once-in-a-lifetime experience went viral in Japan and was reported across widespread TV, newspapers and radio. Another feat for the growing artist is her title as the official DJ of the Red Hurricanes, a professional Japanese rugby team in Osaka.
Now she’s back, this time working with Manse and Vincent Voort for their epic future rave single, “Bring Me To Life“. It has main stage Tomorrowland vibes, packed with fiery synths, rumbling bass, and electrifying lead to will get anybody off their feet. ALESS.A’s piano talent shines, as her beautiful arrangement sits alongside chilling vocals, enchanting you the whole way through.
“This song is a collaboration with MANSE and Vincent Voort. I have been raised with classical music since I was 3 years old. So I created a song that fuses EDM and classical music. The highlight is the live piano performance. The melody of this song leads the listeners to a world of emotions.” – ALESSA.A
Will Laroca aka William Fredriksson is a Swedish artist, songwriter and producer. Even though Will Laroca is a new project, William is no newcomer. In Sweden he is already a multi-platinum producer in the production team TMA, together with his childhood friend Tiam Faorkhy Nia, as well as a gold certified solo artist (under the artist name WILLOW). From 2012 until today, William has helped shape Sweden’s modern hip-hop sound in collaboration with some of the most influential Nordic hip-hop artists.
His music fluidly moves through electronic music and acoustic instruments as well as different genres and styles to create his own personal and exciting sound. The music is easy to access for everyone without losing a deeper meaning, both lyrics and melodies are important for him. Laroca’s influences come from all kinds of genres besides EDM, anything from rap, disco, rock and funk to Swedish/Middle Eastern/South American/African folk music and ethnic beats, as well as pop and country.
Now, this talented artist is back with his new single “Holy Ones” signed to Virgin Music Sweeden. It’s a smooth, pop oriented house track with nuances of Meduza and even Bastille, but all together, unique to Will Laroca. Will explains, “Everyone has darkness and light, we all struggle with those sides and the song is about overpowering your darkness, standing firm and believing in your purpose. If you have purpose, you are a holy one. Have some faith and know your worth!”
With plenty of musical influences present on “Holy Ones,” the most impactful inspirations around the track comes from his faith and God.
“The transition into house music came from a genuine interest in mixing different music styles and experimenting with different tempos and genres. Because of my hip-hop background with very meaningful and personal text and content, it came naturally to me to mix them and create my own take on EDM with deep lyrics. I’m a musician with the greatest respect for the art of music. The possibility to express emotions, dreams and thoughts through a song is what drives me. I basically fell in love with making melodies.” – Will Laroca
More than many other genres of music, when it comes to EDM, a gathering of fans are more similar to a community than a group of people with a common interest. (Exceptions apply.) That could be why when community issues arise, they seem to spread like wildfire and end up as a discussion on Reddit, Twitter, TikTok, Instagram, and more.
It’s also why, when /u/Adventurous_Care6669 asked r/EDM about their hot takes, many of them were community focused. We’ve highlighted a few below, but you can read the whole thread here.
As a 31-year-old myself, who’s been going to shows since he was 18, and working in the scene since 24, I’ve had my fair share of people asking me how I still do it. The passion for the music doesn’t just disappear when you hit a number; sure, I go out less now than I did in my 20s, but you can still catch me front rail at smaller festivals and running into the crowd when I hear my favorite DnB track come on.
Rave influencers are really a mixed bag. And a lot of it depends on how deep and fresh into the fandom you are. For my jaded self, videos making fun of wooks might scratch an itch. For others, skits about rave moms might feel incredibly relatable. Others still might enjoy parodies of people on their first roll at a festival, asking random passersby for gum and water.
It gets universally cringe when we feel that someone from outside the community is trying to co-opt our world for their views. That being said, guys like Cherdleys, Trevor Wallace, and Blake Webber get a lifetime pass.
This one is so dependent on personal taste and frequency of shows that it’s hard to put commentary on. But the basic idea holds up to scrutiny — especially during a large artist tour when the music is time-coded to the visuals, there are certain inherent restrictions on how much a set can be changed from night to night. And if you like a set, you’ll be more likely to have fun seeing it again. It’s why recorded sets on YouTube still rack up tens of thousands of plays years after the event. If it’s good, we won’t mind as much.
Underground raves are actually not that cool
This one definitely nails the hot take question. Underground raves, as in true underground raves without a well-known (or insured) promoter that typically are spread via text and word of mouth, are few and far between these days. When you have professional sound and lights, and comparatively higher fees, artists are going to be less likely to play in a storage container out in the Mojave Desert.
But to the point that this user is making, there is no oversight. They are sometimes (not always) run without concern for health and safety and standard rules need not apply. You’re certainly going at your own risk, and the potential for a lifechanging time is there, but sometimes it’s not worth it..
Festivals today aren’t trash, it’s just your nostalgia running wild
I’m definitely guilty of this one, though I don’t think festivals today are “trash.” I’m just getting older and I can’t personally hang with the young kids anymore. That doesn’t mean that the events themselves are getting worse. There’s more diversity than before (though we still have a long way to go) and the stages are getting bigger and louder.
Sure, there’s elements of corporate greed at play in most festivals in certain aspects. But even looking at Insomniac, the biggest EDM promoter in the country, Pasquale has a long history of devotion to the scene and his vision reflects what the majority wants, not necessarily the most devoted among them.
The rise of EDM in America, specifically the stadium sized progressive house sounds of Swedish House Mafia, Avicii, and Tiesto had an enormous impact on artists all over the world, one of them being LA -based artist, Chris Costello. Today, he makes his debut with an electrifying EP, ‘We Could Be Together‘.
Touching on these earlier influences, Costello beautifully blends pop vocals with euphoric arrangements. Each song feels like an anthem on its own. You can’t go wrong with any song on this EP, but our favorite has to be the opening track, “Out Of Time,” a song truly feels like it belongs on Ultra’s main stage.
Here’s what Chris had to say about it:
“I wanted to create an EP inspired by the ‘Golden Era of EDM.’”
Here at Your EDM, we’ve long carried the belief that EDM and other forms of electronic music wouldn’t be where they are with experimental artists. Mechanizing audio was originally the discipline of scientists, after all, and experimental musicians always seem to have that mad scientist arc.
Whether we’re talking Philip Glass, Brian Eno, Musique Concrète or more contemporary curious artists like Hans Zimmer,Venetian Snares, Aphex Twin and even Noisia, tinkering with sounds, mods and recording techniques factors in just as much as composition, emotion and vibes. It’s just the way these artists’ brains work, and thank goodness they do. Who else is going to push the boundaries of EDM and continue to move it forward? You don’t progress genres by throwing cake and humping the decks, that’s for sure.
Because there are so many famous-cake throwers and deck-humpers around and also because of the slightly elusive and complex nature of the experimental electronic artist, there’s a bit of a dearth of interviews with these beautiful minds on Your EDM. Luckily, we’ve finally reeled one in.
YEDM has been following Chris Ianuzzi for some time now, since his days in the equally experimental but more rock-oriented band Sluka to his ultra-experimental solo project I, Synthesist to his recent releases under his given name, the Olga In a Black Hole EP and Planeteria LP. With those symbiotic releases somewhat categorizable as IDM, Ianuzzi has pulled out all the stops with his upcoming LP, Maze. Released slowly as singles over the past six months, the full and fully tweaked Maze will be out in March.
Maze sees Ianuzzi both returning to form and going fully formless, with some of the tracks almost having a full-on rock or pop structure and others being borderline chaotic. With an almost joyful shirking of genre and style, Maze does more than just push the limits of music and sound; it laughs in the face of those limits.
With Maze set to be one of those albums that pushes the electronic music universe to expand just a bit more, it seemed a prudent time to see if we could sit down and pick one of these magnificent experimental minds, and luckily Ianuzzi agreed to a Q&A. What follows is one of the most descriptive and entertaining descriptions of an artist’s process we’ve heretofore seen on YEDM. If you’ve ever wondered how these guys think, Chris Ianuzzi has provided an excellent window. Hold on tight, embrace the chaos and read on.
Why did you want to release Maze in a series of singles rather than all at once? Have you found it easier or more difficult to do it this way? How many tracks are left to go?
All the tracks have essentially been released in one way or another. I always think creating music is part of a period in time. Music can be presented like a book with chapters. When someone suggested that I try releasing singles before the full album, I thought it was a great idea.
Albums require a lot of time and getting singles out does a couple of good things. First, it’s harder for people to forget about you in this low attention span world. It also gives time to allow the bigger work to develop. Lastly, releasing in singles gives the composer/producer a chance to make different versions after getting audience reactions. It creates a lot of pressure getting the stuff in the system on time and I think that’s good for me. I liked getting audience reactions from live shows, but we have a pandemic and things are different with no shows, so this creates a similar effect.
What sort of modifications have you made based on the feedback and your own observations?
December was the last month and the piece called Maze was released. Now before the album is released I am making some developmental changes. In some cases its like “the Demos are done, lets see what I have to do.” “Live in Today” gave way to a newer version called “Sweet Over Time.” “Fantastic Hellos” is a remix of some elements from “Hello” on the Planeteria album. Then I made a different version for the album called “Cosmic Hellos” which is a combination of the two. (Laughs) I have to stop with that piece now! I’m becoming a “Hello” psycho.
I am also making a slightly different version of “March of Madness” for the album. It will be processed using the (Dolby) Atmos system, which is a form of 360 spatial audio. I’m working with some great people in Turkey making an AI video for the song too. Its going to be fantastic.
Let’s talk style a bit: a lot of these tracks on Maze seem, to the casual listener, almost to be the antithesis to your previous ventures Olga In a Black Hole and Planeteria. You’ve said, however, around the time that Olga…was released, it was meant to be a prequel to Planeteria in terms of both style and substance. Now that it’s mostly done and out, how do you think Maze relates to these other works?
I set up a challenge for myself with Planeteria. I felt that I wanted to move beyond song structure and repetitive grooves. I have been working with songs for many years with my I, Synthesist project. so, I was like a teacher not allowing old habits to be there. I think I went too far. I didn’t feel comfortable being myself sometimes. I think it was a good work-though and I went through the process and learned. I also wanted to get better with my modular synth.
By contrast the original “Hello” for example, was created in a day, it was during album mastering time. I really was like a rebel using a drum & bass groove with that. I just let loose at the end.
On closer listen, there are a lot of elements that are similar between Olga…/Planeteria and Maze, but they almost seem reversed. The ambient sound design and general woo feel are still there, for example, but they take a backseat to more organized noise elements and post punk-style vocals. Was that a conscious decision or sort of just how it flowed as you were working? What do you think it means for your overall sound and style?
I definitely had a flow (this time around). I have always worked with sound design as the core and inspiration of work. I started making music and wasn’t thinking about songs. “Infinite Prize” was definitely a song stuck in my head as I got going and then the vision of what a video could be (came to me).
As I continued making more music, song (structures) were definitely present. I then went to “Saturday Night Confession.” That was originally made for the I, Synthesist project but it was left hanging and I decided to finish it. “So Far, So Near” was originally meant to be instrumental. This new stuff was started before the release of Planeteria.
Tech talk time! The other thing that’s quite noticeable on the new tracks is the experimental side of things has been ramped up and thus the composition must have been a different process. Did you still work scoring-style due to wanting to cram all those different elements in or was it more mad scientist in the studio this time? Or both?
Both. The Mad Scientist is always there. I mean, take a look at the I, Synthesist pictures. Maze could be looked at as the fourth I, Synthesist album but I really felt the need to continue using my name and being comfortable with that.
You’ve got a healthy dose of drone going in these tracks, but it sounds quite different than in previous work. Did you do anything differently or come up with new techniques? How big was the Moog element this time around?
I am really into my modular synthesizers and always exploring. I don’t think of trying to make drone or anything. I find things that are telling me something. Funny, I didn’t have a Moog on Planeteria. I had a modular Moog a long time ago. I did recently get a Moog Subharmonicon and I used it for some elements in “So Far So Near.” The big use of it is in the end of “Infinite Prize.” The patterns developing and changing are all done with the Sub Harmonicon’s sequencer. I hope to add a Moog with the original Moog oscillators and filters later this year.
Even with the rock-style vocals and what pop fans might call more structured track formats, the Maze tracks seem to still be pushing the boundaries of experimental electronica. What new methods or arrangements did you use to get your results? How much was programmed with modern/digital methods and how much was analog/modulators?
I spent a lot of time in my life working in rock-oriented bands, using that song structure, so some elements are part of my vocabulary. I spent a lot of time doing scoring and working with classical as well as experimental. I have a (diverse) vocabulary.
I’ve also always been known for pushing envelopes. I am not consciously here trying to be a conquistador, it just happens. I have always loved analog synthesizers as well as some digital synths, et cetera. Combining these elements can be beautiful. I think certain elements have their place the way an orchestra has instruments.
How does the experimental/sound design end of things figure in?
The Maze track “Setagaya” is a good thing to talk about (to explain how I work). It’s not a song; it is more sound design-oriented but it does have melodic and rhythmic elements that a person can latch onto. I was in a band called Sluka that was signed with a Japanese label. After the second album was finished, I was making comments about how the sounds of Tokyo were inspiring to me. I started a project that was recording sounds of Tokyo on DAT and then sampling them and making the music that it inspired with the samples. Nobody knew what in the world I was talking about then. The project was televised in Japan showing how I made the recordings and worked through it. Still no one really got it. (laughs) This was 1990, the world has changed a lot since then. OK, (maybe I am a) conquistador. Or at least an envelope pusher.
(Flash forward to “Setagaya”) and I still had some of the sounds that I recorded and decided to make something current that used them. The sounds that I recorded were from an area of Tokyo called Setagaya. The train and any things about Setagaya are a great thing (to sample even now).
What, if any, are the more philosophical or story-telling themes of Olga…/Planeteria and Maze? What do you want listeners to take away from the overall experience of these three releases?
I would like people to go on a journey within themselves to find what the pieces and songs inspire. Olga In a Black Hole began by me using a Russian soft synth called Olga. I had a reverb plugin called the Black Hole made by Eventide. So, my Olga was being played through The Black Hole. This created a vision for me to latch onto for my own creative story.
Which track or tracks on the album do you think would be best for audiences to listen to in order to get a snapshot of what the album’s about? Best track for EDM crossover fans? Experimental fans?
I think that “Hunger” is definitely an EDM crossover thing, Some even find industrial elements in it. It is very danceable an I want to hear it loud in a club. Any of the “Hellos” could fit into an EDM/drum & bass type as well. “March of Madness” also has points that could fit into the EDM crossover. I am putting that song through developments right now. As I mentioned, song inspired a fantastic computer artist and sculptor in Istanbul, Turkey. He is making an AI video for it. It’s amazing to see this develop. It is very similar in approach to what Duran Duran did with “Invisible.”
Last week we entered my lyrics into his computer and we watched paintings develop from the computer’s dream state. This is going to be a very special work. We are working over Zoom. The video for “Infinite Prize” also was created through Zoom work as everyone was in a different location.
(On the experimental/post rock end of things), I think “So Far So Near” is a great example of using song structure in development but it really expanded with the three minutes of modular world at the end as well as internal stuff. The intro has some good analog stuff. The whole song is a little over ten minutes and I will keep it like that for the album. The single was split into Side 1 and Side 2.
Of course this project is still going and not totally finished yet, but what else is on the horizon for you? Do you plan to continue this series or go in a totally different direction?
I am very interested in performing. I want to dive deeper into the analog modular synth and digital modular synths. I want to make video and music. I make video backdrops for performances.
I don’t see (Maze or anything I do) as a series but just what I do, I want to make an invitation to go on a journey. No restrictions.
Aside from that, my daughter Nina started making the Maze track “Shuttles” and I helped her finish it. She is 13 now and a fantastic pianist so I hope to work with her more in the future.
Maze will release in full in March. The singles released thus far can be steamed on Spotify and Apple Music or purchased on Bandcamp. Stay tuned to Ianuzzi’s YouTube channel for the upcoming videos mentioned in the interview.
The Joe Biden/Kamala Harris inauguration is officially happening tomorrow — and of course what better way to prepare for the dawn of a new administration than an official playlist?
It was curated by “D-Nice and Raedio, the audio everywhere label founded by Issa Rae and Benoni Tagoe, and was crafted in partnership with the Presidential Inauguration Committee,” reveals Billboard. Songs on the playlist include Kendrick Lamar, Bob Marley, Beyoncé, Tame Impala, Bruce Springsteen, Mac Miller, and more.
Only two EDM artists were deemed presidential enough to be worthy of inclusion on the playlist: Major Lazer and Kygo, with “Make It Hot” and “Higher Love,” respectively.
You can listen to the full playlist below ahead of the televised inauguration tomorrow morning.
Over the past few days, dance blogs have been publishing articles with various spins on the title, “Flux Pavilion Says Goodbye To Dubstep.” It’s a good article concept — a catchy title with a genre figure that has been at the top of his game over the past decade, with plenty of hits to his name like “I Can’t Stop”; “Do or Die,” Childish Gambino’s sole foray into EDM; his remix of “Cracks” by Freestlyers; the list goes on.
But the reality of this tweet is a bit more nuanced. While the above tweet has 390 RTs and nearly 4k likes (at time of publishing), the preceding tweets which undoubtedly give it context are far less engaged with. In referring to himself as a “dubstep person,” Flux Pavilion referencing the sort of person who’s always “trying to persuade everyone that dubstep is still good […] just because someone said it was bad in 2013.”
Flux isn’t saying that dubstep is bad, either. He’s just saying that he’s no longer the kind of person who’s wasting energy on trying to convince anyone that it’s “still good,” even though it’s been good this whole time.
As we approach the release of his new album, .wav, a week from today, I wanted to offer a perspective that other authors of the aforementioned articles might not have — and that’s that I’ve had .wav for the better part of three months, and have been listening to it, and I can tell you his best is yet to come.
While .wav is not objectively a “dubstep album,” elements of Flux’s core sound are still pervasive within the project, including familiar bass patches, synths, melodic arrangements, and keys. Not to mention one of the tracks on the album, an orchestral production fused with dubstep that is one of the finest bass tracks I’ve heard in a long time.
So for anyone who’s been reading the recent articles and has been worried that Flux Pavilion is leaving the scene behind, hopefully this helps to assuage your worries a bit. He certainly won’t be the same Flux that we’ve known for the past decade, but we can’t expect someone to do the same thing for over 10 years and not get a little bored of it.
.wav, the new album from Flux Pavilion, is out January 21. Pre-save it here.
The resurgence of indie synth pop in the late 00s and early 10s was sort of a breath of fresh air in a musical climate that prior to that had been pretty strictly divided between pop, EDM and Indie. Acts like M83, Cut/Copy, Hot Chip. Phantogram and even the Yeah Yeah Yeahs took the new synths and mods that had been developed for EDM and pop and ran with them. Moog was once again installed to its rightful place at the top of the synth Pantheon and it looked like the fusion of indie rock and EDM was going to blast off through the 2010s.
While the afore-mentioned bands are still around and making great stuff, indie synth pop sort of plateaued around 2010 and the scene split again or rather, a lot of the synth and electronic artists started working with pop music and indie rock, while more accepting of synth intervention, went back to analog somewhat. It seems the precedent was set, however, and it was only a matter of time before indie synth was back up and running. This year seems to be that time, and it makes sense when you think about it; pretty tough to get an entire orchestra into your shelter in place, whereas synths are portable and easily disinfectible.
Philadelphia artist David Thompson’s career has followed the trajectory of indie synth in terms of a timeline, although not necessarily the purpose. An installment on the Philly indie scene between 2012 and 2014 with his band Big Tusk, Thompson put away his synths to take up the human rights causes he’s passionate about in a more meaningful way. He founded the Philly Tenants Union and Philly Workers for Dignity in that time, working to help improve living and working conditions around his home city. He began releasing work again in 2017 with another local band and just recently went solo. His new EP The Wall is his second solo release.
Both Thompson’s human rights work and this EP were started before COVID hit, but now they have even more significance and are downright prophetic. Both tenants and workers need help more than ever with all the shutdown and housing crises, and similarly The Wall strikes a whole new tone with recent events. With its title track presumably about Trump’s failed xenophobic wall project and all the things it represents in the sociopolitical climate of the last four years, Thompson pulls no punches lyrically in this EP. It’s not subtle and it’s not meant to be. “Time” discusses the prison that is work-a-day life for many people while “This Goon Cant” “Clair” and “Obsession” are more personal but still hint at time lost because of the current times.
So with all those stark lyrics and messages, where’s the synth pop? Why, it’s right along with said lyrics. Channeling his inner Duran Duran, Kraftwerk and Cut/Copy, Thompson mushes the lyrics together with upbeat, complex and sometimes slightly eerie synth work. “Time” has a nostalgic “Girls on Film”-style beat but also channels Thompson’s other major musical influence, classical hymns. In fact, Thompson says most of the tracks on The Wall have classical influence to them but in “Time” it’s definitely front and center. As an avid choir participant, the church organ-like keys are a fun secondary melody in “Time” and they add a sort of goth Joy Division-like undertone.
Next up on the EP is the title track which arguably has the biggest contrast between lyrics and music. Almost unbearably cheerful the synths in “The Wall” screech away as the chorus literally talks about the “dirty work” of the wall. It’s likely meant to seem fake, strained and a bit fearful, just like the climate in the US ever since that wall was threatened. “The Goon Cant” was co-written by Michael Muller and has probably the most pensive musical work on The Wall. It’s lyrically the most introspective as well so it makes sense. Presumably about his own personal failings, there seems to also be a ting of politics there as well, as the lyrics conjure up thoughts about the dangers of demagoguery and the confusing legacy the Baby Boomers left for the younger generations.
Bringing up the rear on The Wall are two more personal tracks. “Clair” is a surprising 70s rock-style bop that conjures up Elvis Costello in general tone or even The Mamas and The Papas when it comes to synths. This track shows even more of Thompson’s compositional range, as he had TV Pole Shine‘s Howe Pearson on guitar and clearly designed the track around said extraordinary guitar work. Finally “Obsession” bounces right back to ultra-synth as it bops around some pretty dark lyrics about internet “stalking” and living in the past. The contrast is back and the music is meant to be futuristic as a commentary on the current state of human connection.
One almost feels guilty for dancing along to the infectiously poppy tracks on The Wall, but it’s quite clearly meant to be a danceable guilt trip. Or, if you’re a more glass half full type, perhaps it’s meant to remind us to dance and enjoy music, art and love even with everything that’s going on in the world and in our own hearts. We can still connect to ourselves, after all, and synth pop is a great way to get there. In the meantime, acts like David Thompson are contributing to indie synth pop 3.0 with clean, technically sound work and no matter what the point, we’re definitely here for it.
The Wall is out now and can be purchased on Bandcamp or streamed on Spotify.
Nashville musician Chris E. Kelly called his electro project Lost American because at the time, he was an expat in Spain, having wandered Europe and Asia for years. Now that he’s retuned to his hometown, it seems he may keep the moniker; it’s certainly a “lost” sort of time for America, after all.
Potential sociopolitical statement names aside, Kelly has fashioned Lost American to be a modern take on electro house with lots of synth, deadpan vocals and ravey collabs. Think Nashville’s answer to Roxy Music, The Pet Shop Boys and The Human League with a bit of German techno and Kaskade-style pop EDM thrown in, or maybe just a “Sirius” version of early 00s synth pop upstarts, Gil Mantera’s Party Dream. It’s international nostalgic, punchy and fun all at the same time.
Lost American’s most recent few tracks, despite all being unapologetically synth-heavy, vary quite a bit in both style and substance, especially when the remixes get involved. “Let’s Stay Outside” is a slow, thoughtful and ambient heart-clincher of a track whose original mix uses deep, industrial-style bass and future bass backing to lift the pensive vocals out of monotone and into the sublime. This track has two remixes and Kelly has certainly been smart to employ this tactic of remixing his work. The wide open composition and synthy nature of the original tracks really lend themselves to remixing, forcing the listener to hear the vocals differently and, not for nothing, expose it to a wider audience.
The first remix was done by Stash Konig, a breakout EDM artist who put a definite dancefloor spin on “Let’s Stay Outside” that certainly will catch the ear of the festival audience but at the same time really preserves the feeling of the original. The “tetraphobic” mix by Lee Groves follows the lines of the original but adds even more punchy deep bass and distortion to really squeeze down on the emotional feel of the track. All three mixes are technically masterful and perfectly evocative.
“Robot Spark” also has two mixes, with the remix being done by a Rauch von König, seemingly another name for Stash Konig (if the promo is anything to go by). This track is where the Roxy Music rubber really meets the vintage synth road, as with both mixes that sort of ennui-filled ambient work is paired with new wave-style keyboard melody. Von König stuck to the lines here this time, punching the track up with the 80s synths that match the fun, atomic age lyrics. Kelly made what he calls a mini documentary video for this track but it’s more like a cheeky director’s cut of the actual video, where Kelly explains everything that’s going on as images of his band flash in the background, he apparently gets sick at one point and he dances around like a GenX dad visiting the disco set of Trainspotting. Both versions are a lot of fun.
Bringing Lost American’s releases current to the day, he just released “Thank You Miss America” today and if you were wondering if we pulled that “America is lost” theory out of our altogether, wonder no more. Both video and song are heavily charged with political commentary and really can you blame Kelly? Imagine playing music abroad for almost 20 years and then coming back to this. Talk about culture shock.
Musically, “Thank You Miss America” is as close stylistically to Kelly’s own description of his recent work: “I”m calling it Southern Gothic electronic: a modern take on what triggers passions in the deep South.” Well said, as this track has that great call-and response vocal quality with drawn out vowels and high notes that are on the verge of a yodel. Despite there being lots of fancy instrumental work and electronic production in the background, one can feel the swamp of the deep South here.
There’s not much to say for the video other than “watch it,” but presumably Kelly made it before the events of January 6 so it’s eerily prophetic. Or some might hope it’s prophetic, that is, as at the end (spoiler), an animated Trump is jettisoned from the planet. Here’s hoping Kelly and his animator are psychic.
With an intensely diverse and open-minded style, an obvious mastery of production and songwriting and the wherewithal to work with some great remixers, it’s likely this won’t be the last the EDM world has seen of Lost American. In fact, the remix of “Thank You Miss America” isn’t out yet so suffice it to say we’ll have at least more thought-provoking banger on our hands shortly. Bridging genres, eras and literal oceans with his work, Lost American is far from lost, even in the current times.
All the tracks reviewed above are out now and can be streamed with lots of other Lost American tracks on Spotify. Check out Kelly’s YouTube channel as well, as there are interesting videos for almost every track he’s put out in the last year.
For the first time in years, Dzeko returns for another high-energy mix in 10 minutes, celebrating some of the best EDM tracks of 2020!
The mini-mix includes 37 massive productions from Tiësto, David Guetta & Morton, Martin Garrix, Ytram, Sofi Tukker & Gorgon City, Dillon Francis, Don Diablo, Juice WRLD & Marshmello, Oliver Heldens, Loud Luxury, CID, and many more — all mixed into one seamless presentation of high-profile dance hits.
Dzeko also works in his collaboration with Keith Urban, “Both Still Young.”
For a few years running, the EDM community looked forward Dzeko & Torres‘ annual mix before they went their separate ways. House fans will especially appreciate Dzeko’s revival of the popular series — for a year when we need it most.
Enjoy here via Proximity and peep the tracklist below!
Dzeko – 2020 In 10 Minutes
01. Tiësto – The Business
02. Tina Turner & Kygo – What’s Love Got To Do
03. Meduza – Paradise
04. NOTD & Catello – Nobody
05. Diplo, Paul Woolford & Kareen Lomax – Looking For Me
06. HVME – Goosebumps
07. DJ D-Sol ft Gia Koka – Someone Like You (Azello Remix)
08. Ytram & Elderbrook – Fire
09. Twocolors – Lovefool
10. Loud Luxury – Cold Feet (Cat Dealers Remix)
11. DVBBS ft Blackbear & 24kGoldn – Tinted Eyes
12. Shaun Frank – Take Me Over
13. Joel Corry ft MNEK – Head & Heart
14. Sigala ft James Arthur – Lasting Lover (Tiësto Remix)
15. Tiësto & Vintage Culture – Coffee
16. Alok, Illkay Sencan & Tove Lo – Don’t Say Goodbye
17. Sofi Tukker & Gorgon City – House Arrest
18. CID – Dolce
19. Don Diablo ft Zak Abel – Bad
20. Juice WRLD & Marshmello – Come & Go
21. Will K – Take It Off
22. Joel Corry – Lonely
23. Oliver Heldens ft Boy Matthews – Details
24. MK & Carla Monroe – 2AM
25. Cat Dealers & Flakkë – Sweet Munchies
26. Diplo & Wax Motif – Love To The World
27. Tujamo – Enough Of You
28. Dzeko ft Keith Urban – Both Still Young
29. Topic & A7S ft Lil Baby – Why Do You Lie To Me
30. Dillon Francis ft BabyJake – You Do You
31. Mike Williams & Justin Mylo – Face Up To The Sun
32. Young Bombs, Darius Rucker – Wrong Side Of Love
33. Benny Benassi & Jeremih – Lovelife
34. Martin Garrix ft Clinton Kane – Drown
35. Illenium – Nightlight (Michael Calfan Remix)
36. David Guetta & Morton – Kill Me Slow
37. Loud Luxury & Frank Walker ft Stephen Puth – Like Gold
Queen’s Gambit was without a doubt one of the biggest, if not the biggest, new shows in 2020. Never before has chess been so engrossing or enthralling to a wide audience, but it was due in large part to star Anya Taylor-Joy’s magnificent performance.
EDM fans, though, might have found the star strangely familiar. In a total blast from the past, the answer is here: Taylor-Joy starred in the video for Skrillex’s “Red Lips” remix by GTA.
The music video first dropped Mar 5, 2016, before her big break as the main protagonist in M. Night Shyamalan’s Split later that year. Now, she’s in one of the biggest television phenomena of the year.
Check out the video again below if you’ve forgotten!
YØUNGBLØØD has caught our ear on more than one occasion with his heavy, at times unrelenting, bass/trap productions — and we can expect plenty more coming 2021 from this next up producer.
From the creative mind that brought us “Playboy” and “Throw It Down” with BLOSSO, YØUNGBLØØD continues his hot streak with new singles “ROLLIN’” and “Nosebleed,” both featuring DamianSimmons. Also, a new collab remix with jistix, for UZ‘s “Fire.” Instead of writing up one production over another, we thought an artist spotlight would be more suitable with everything the LA-based talent has going on.
After releasing on Nightenjin and ElectricHawk this year, YØUNGBLØØD is heading into 2021 full force. Read and listen along as we check in with YØUNGBLØØD — and hear the momentum in play out during his annual New Year, New Blood: IV mix, which airs tonight on Nightenjin’s Twitch channel. The 1 hour 40 minute mix, chock-full of IDs, releases tomorrow via SoundCloud and Audius.
Background check! When did you start producing and when did you become YØUNGBLØØD?
So I began producing EDM back in 2014 by making prog house but I didn’t start making trap or using the YØUNGBLØØD name until about 2016. I discovered EDM actually through Breathe Carolina and Martin Garrix but I eventually found a love for Flosstradamus and Yellow Claw that brought me to where I am now.
Describe the YØUNGBLØØD sound in your own words…
We started calling my sound “designer trap” or “designer bass” I think at some point this year haha, but essentially I think of this project as a place to make music that I personally love listening to while pushing my musical boundaries to create something both cohesive and unique. I have a ton of music already slated to come out early next year and I still have plenty more to release beyond that including an EP that I really feel will reshape people’s image of my music and the YØUNGBLØØD project.
You can expect more music than I’ve ever released ever before as well as consistent streams and hopefully some shows in the summer (again, pandemic permitting). I’ll be putting out at least one EP if not two along with plenty of singles. I’m also planning on putting together a special pop-punk side project with some people I’ve worked with in the past to let me revisit my roots of when I really got into performing music. I also have a ton of collaborations with various artists like Maces, PR!CE, Banana Phone, Hearsay, and plenty more that I’m excited to show everyone.
Anything else you want to plug? 🙂
YES! I’ll be debuting my annual mix; New Year, New Blood: IV in a stream this year! I’ve teamed up with Nightenijn, Electric Hawk, Trillvo, Baked Up, and the Arcadium Project to bring a very unique stream lineup filled with custom visuals and stacked with IDs. I’ve brought PR!CE and Maces along to help round out the lineup and the stream will debut on Dec. 30 at 6pm PT/ 9pm ET on the Nightenjin twitch.
If there’s anyone in the EDM scene we can all consistently look to for some emotional support in these trying times, it’s San Holo. With his particular brand of beautiful melodies, toned down vocals, slow tempo, and more, his vibe is all about positivity and making his fans feel good.
Thankfully, 2020 is nearly over, but that doesn’t mean that the hardships we faced this year are going to automatically be over. Still, it will be nice to finally put this dumpster fire of a year behind us and at least try to mentally start fresh in 2021. While we all come up with New Year resolutions to better ourselves or at least get back to some semblance of homeostasis, you can listen to San’s “goodbye 2020 set” and get your emotions in order.
Forbes just released its annual Highest-Paid Celebrities List for 2020. Even during a global pandemic which curtailed many of the list’s entrants’ ability to make an income, the total earnings only dropped $200M from 2019 for a total of $6.1B.
However, the list also reveals a new guard of younger, hungrier entrepreneurs, entertainers, and athletes. While years ago we might have seen Tiësto and David Guetta on the list, now the sole representatives of EDM are The Chainsmokers and Marshmello. Even Calvin Harris is nowhere to be found.
The Chainsmokers come in at #21 with $68M, and Marshmello at #35 with $56M, surrounded by names like Mark Wahlberg, Ben Affleck, and Dr. Phil. The Chainsmokers even come a couple places higher on the list than both Ed Sheeran, Taylor Swift, and Post Malone.
The only musicians higher are the cream of the pop crop: The Jonas Brothers (#20, $68.5M) and Ariana Grande (#17, $72M). Elton John ($81M) also comes in at #14 and Drake is #2 with $170M, a full $420M below #1 entrant Kylie Jenner. Drake’s place on the list likely comes more from his Adidas brand partnership and entrepreneurial ventures than his music, lately.
Example has long been one of the greatest crossover acts in EDM and hip hop, called upon for numerous collaborations and remixed more times than we can count. When he first teamed up with Calvin Harris for “We’ll Be Coming Back” in 2012 on 18 Months, it was a smash success. Now, the pair are back with a new track on Example’s new album, “Some Nights Last For Days.”
“Some Nights Last For Days” is the title track from Example’s seventh studio album released yesterday. The production from Harris feels reminiscent of the funky style he made for Funk Wav Bounces, and meshes perfectly with Example’s harmonized, meaningfully slow vocals.
You can listen to the full album here and check out “Some Nights Last For Days” below.
The Chainsmokers released their hit “Paris” in 2017 following the success of their Collage EP the previous year, containing the major global smash hit, “Closer” with Halsey. It was the first single in what would eventually become their debut album, Memories… Do Not Open.
While the song was written as a metaphor for the journey through a young relationship, one section of the lyrics has given it a whole new purpose as it’s been adopted by the Black Lives Matter movement on TikTok as a new anthem.
I don’t know if it’s fair but I thought “How
Could I let you fall by yourself
While I’m wasted with someone else”
If we go down then we go down together
#ifwegodownthenwegodowntogether has emerged as a hashtag associated with the videos, emphasizing the solidarity that those who use it have with the black community. It’s been shared by Hispanics and the LGBTQ+ community, and even the Native American community has been included (first video below).
Croatian techno artist Walter Wayne has just released Twisted, the EP follow-up to his breakout debut album Synchronize. Extraordinarily, the two releases were pretty much back-to-back, with Twisted dropping just a month after its LP forebear. With another single on the way this Friday, it’s fair to say Wayne stands to be one of those prodigal artists who are able to release tracks at a dizzying pace while keeping the quality extremely high. With techno like this, however, no one will be complaining about keeping up.
While his Synchronize LP was concentrated on melody and ambient sound design, almost bordering on progressive house, Wayne has decided to take Twisted, well, twisted. Taking his style in an altogether different, dark techno direction, Wayne uses a number of techniques to get the sound he wants. Taking cues from legends like Kraftwerk, modern deep techno artists like Monq and even artists from other genres like Camo & Krooked and Misanthrop, Twisted uses various synths and programs to create lots of unique sounds.
Case in point: EP opener “Crows” starts out with a classic techno melody before launching into and combining with some of Wayne’s now characteristic progressive sounds found on Synchronize but it also uses some very ravey dark synths layered over top of a rather minimal, snare-heavy beat. The same track also incorporates some subtle vapor wave synths that subtly tie the more techno-style melodies together. “Crows” is a great example of the layering and composition that takes a fun, ravey EDM track to another, more complex level.
Listening to such complicated composition, one might think Wayne has classical training but in fact his background is in engineering. Just as good for techno, really, and it also explains the layering and sound design that went into Twisted. Another highlight where we can see this sound engineering is in the EP’s penultimate track, “Line 172.” Here, the synths border on experimental as Wayne plays with sinewaves in almost every bit of the track.
He also does this soundwave play in “Through the Night,” which, on the high registers, seems like a literal experiment where Wayne tried to see how high he could pitch the oscillator before it became intolerable. It seems he his just the right level, as the track is still highly danceable, deep and fun all at the same time.
With his upcoming single “Robot Dreams” due out this Friday, Wayne seems to be going even deeper and darker, with heavy bass throughout the track and a sick and “twisted” break that should make most heavy D&B and bass music producers shake in their collective boots. If Walter Wayne has anything to say about it, deep and dark techno will be making a comeback shortly if not now, bringing both a depth and skill level that rivals some of the best sound designers in the game.
The Synchronize LP and Twisted EP are available to stream of purchase on Beatport, Spotify, Apple Music and GooglePlay. “Robot Dreams” drops Friday, June 5 on Wayne’s SuperPosition label and can be pre-ordered on Beatport.
Ellie Goulding isn’t your typical EDM artist — in fact, she’s not really an EDM artist at all. But after collaborating with Skrillex and Calvin Harris, and being remixed by Bassnectar and pretty much everyone else under the sun, no one has earned an honorable mention as much as her.
Her last album, Delirium, came out five years ago, but that changes this July with her newest album, Brightest Blue. The album will be 13 tracks in length, plus an extended 5-track semi-EP including her released singles “Worry About Me” with blackbear, “Hate Me” with Juice WRLD, and “Close To Me” with Diplo and Swae Lee.
It’s out in full on July 17. You can find your pre-order method of choice here.
Two days ago, Ghastly called out Carnage for allegedly buying views on his new documentary, The Price Of Greatness. His argument pointed to the discrepancy in views versus likes on the video (only 2k likes on 713k views at the time, while others had much, much different ratios). Ghastly later deleted the tweet at the request of his management.
Later that night, Carnage responded: “Ghastly if you can prove I purchased fake views on my documentary I’ll donate 100K to any COVID relief non-profit you want… but if you can’t how about you donate 1k to @anfnicaragua if you’re so sure that I have faked my numbers…”
. @Ghastly if you can prove I purchased fake views on my documentary I’ll donate 100K to any COVID relief non-profit you want… but if you can’t how about you donate 1k to @anfnicaragua if you’re so sure that I have faked my numbers…
Now, Ghastly has come back with a video giving evidence of his findings, one he claims puts the nail in the coffin. (It also must be noted that Ghastly donated $1,000 to Carnage’s requested charity before he even began his argument.) Like Your EDM’s original article on the subject, he examined other videos in EDM, namely documentary-style videos, that had realistic view/like ratios, not even videos that had the same amount of views as his.
As he showed in his findings, many videos exist that have fractions of the views as The Price of Greatness with more realistic ratios, many of them trouncing his documentary in likes. Screenshots of comments on the documentary also pointed toward buying views.
The nail in the coffin, as Ghastly puts it, alleges that this is not even the first time Carnage has bought views. He shows Socialblade data where Carnage’s videos spiked by millions of views even when he hadn’t posted a thing.
While there’s no concrete evidence, such as bank records or transactions, the overwhelming amount of even circumstantial evidence gives Ghastly’s argument far more weight.
Detroit may be known for techno, but the variety of rising talent in other genres coming out of the city’s remarkably diverse scene never ceases to amaze us. Case in point — Deucez, bitch.
The 25-year-old Motor City producer already has 12 years of production under his belt and began his musical journey to escape a rough childhood. With such persistence, it was only a matter of time before the EDM world picked up what he was throwing down. Although his experience spans nearly every genre of EDM, he’s found his stride with dubstep/riddim, on full display here with “Psycho.”
We’re by no means late to the party, as we’ve been playing this one out for almost a month now — but, it’s about time we gave this track the proper write up it deserves.
Check out “Psycho” right here via High Caliber Records and link up with Deucez below.
The Las Vegas Edition of the BigCityBeats WORLD CLUB DOME was set to take place June 5-7 in the Commerzbank-Arena Frankfurt. However, the event was cancelled on account of COVID-19. Nevertheless, BigCityBeats CEO Bernd Breiter and his team, racked their brains looking to create a concept that would still allow WorldClubbers the opportunity to experience the glamour of World Club Dome – Las Vegas, but in guaranteed safety. Their final result was to combine real life and virtual reality and create a one of a kind World Club Dome – Las Vegas Edition. Three days, the largest club in the world across all mediums, all channels, stimulating senses all through the prism of live events and the power of the internet. Live from Mannheim, live from the Frankfurt Stadium Pool, and broadcasting around the world.
On Saturday June 6, at exactly 12 noon, the huge live event will commence streaming; keen observers will have already realized that this is the exact time the gates of the Commerzbank-Arena in Frankfurt would have swung open. To begin the event, all BCB.FM superstar DJs will share a symbolic handshake. Then as the evening approaches, a moment that no-one around the world could imagine. A spectacular live show, which will include pillars of fire, mind-blowing lasers, CO2 cannons, plenty of pyrotechnics, and of course, the most ambitious and best music event in Europe.
While WorldClubbers will have to exercise patience until they can experience Las Vegas Edition 2021 in Frankfurt, the Mannheim Maimarktgelände is set to become one of the biggest dance floors in Germany: 600 “dancing cars,” a total of 1000 party goers, plus hundreds of thousands of people from around the world tuning into the live stream. Live on stage: Gestšrt aber GeiL and Le Shuuk. And connected live on big screen: EDM superstars from around the world. But that’s not all we have in store. Fans of the harder sound of dance music can prepare themselves for a Zombie Stage takeover of the WORLD CLUB DOME Drive-In. An additional highlight of the night will be further announcements of headline DJs for BigCityBeats WORLD CLUB DOME Winter Edition in Dusseldorf, January 2021.
WORLD CLUB DOME 2020 featured by the worlds best acts: Armin van Buuren, Afrojack, Da Tweekaz, David Guetta, Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike, EDX, Le Shuuk, Lost Frequencies, Robin Schulz, Steve Aoki, Timmy Trumpet, W&W and many more that’s will play across the weekend.
Pre-registration for the Las Vegas Drive-In has already begun, with pre-sale to follow shortly. Find out more at worldclubdome.com.
Arguments could surely be made for both sides — in the broadest interpretation of the term, he is absolutely within the confines of EDM, as he makes his dance music electronically. On the other hand, there’s a group that interprets the term to be one denoting some degree of commercialization, music that would be welcomed on the main stage of a festival. Though even that doesn’t really disqualify Porter from the term, as he’s certainly become big enough to warrant main stage billings.
Still, the question was posited by the man himself yesterday and currently, at time of publishing, has over 37,000 votes. Right now, 77% of responses (approximately 28,771 votes) say that he’s EDM, around 8,600 disagree.
It’s also worth looking at the responses from some of Porter’s contemporaries, as “EDM” has always been a bit of a contentious acronym.
you have roots in edm and some deeper references from edm show through your music, but then there’s all of your other references and tastes too. i feel like you’ve cultivated your own space by now in balancing all of those. you’re flexible. you’re just you, porter robinson
YehMe2 has announced his time in EDM may be coming to an end…
Yesterday, Josh Young aka YehMe2 and once 1/2 of Flosstradamus, took to Twitter to share his open and honest thoughts about his project. For trap lovers everywhere, his unexpected statement is difficult to read.
“none of the promoters fuck with me,” he said. “since i left floss i feel legit black listed. so fuck it, my album is gonna be straight rap shit.”
We reached out to him for further clarification and here’s what he said:
I saw the quarantine streaming boom as a potential for different artists to be given huge exposure at little risk/cost to the promoter. But what we’ve seen are the same vanilla line ups playing the same vanilla sets.
I have always had to evolve and innovate to find success. This move is no different.
Back in 2017, Young explained the reason behind the split from his former counterpart Curt Cameruci, “I wanted to take creative control of my career, music and artistic vision.”
As long as he continues making music, we’ll be listening.
So, the good news is Zedd’s third album is still coming. We might not know when, but he’s still working on it, and he just shared a teaser of a new piece of music he’s writing for Z3.
“Just finished writing this piece,” he says in his tweet. “Started writing it years ago and turned it into my old intro for a while (some of you may recognize it). [Envisioning] this to be a mix of EDM and classical music.”
The chord progressions on the song definitely sound familiar, and you might recognize parts of it from his Ultra 2017 performance. It’s bright and sweet with just a hint of EDM that we’ll inevitably hear more of when the fully-produced version is released.
Check it out below and stay tuned for more Zedd album news!
just finished writing this piece. started writing it years ago and turned it in to my old intro for a while (some of you may recognize it). Invisioning this to be a mix of EDM and classical music. This one will go on my new album. 🙂 pic.twitter.com/1NqOAczVXr
Alan Walker’s last original release came just a month ago with “Heading Home,” his collaboration with Ruben. But now, he’s revealed his biggest release yet, a new collaboration with legendary composer Hans Zimmer.
Zimmer’s notable works include Interstellar, The Dark Knight, Dunkirk, Pirates of the Caribbean, The Lion King, Inception, and more. Now, the two are teaming up for something we can’t even really anticipate. To date, Zimmer hasn’t officially collaborated with any EDM artist, though Illenium, Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike, KSHMR, and others have used his music in their sets to great effect.
One of EDM’s favorite supergroups is back! 3 Are Legend (Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike & Steve Aoki) are back with “Raver Dome,” their first release since last year’s “Kahleesi.” As the title suggests, “Raver Dome” is an unbridled big room banger, made to be played at the main stage at maximum volume.
While touring has been shut down indefinitely, 2020 has been a stellar year musically for both DVLM and Aoki. This is the fourth single of 2020 for DVLM and Steve Aoki’s Neon Future IV is already one of our favorite albums of the year! The track opens with hypnotic rave synths, the melody only gets bigger with more production getting layered over. During the build up we get those “put your hands up” that’ll have you yearning for a summer festival. The drop is pure big room bliss and really hearkens back to the 2014-2015 days. The horns are bouncy and the kick is nasty!
The contributions of both Sandro Silva and Justin Prime only serve to beef up “Raver Dome”’s big room bona fides. Listen to the latest from 3 Are Legend, Justin Prime and Sandro Silva “Raver Dome” out now on Ultra and Smash the House. Relive 3 Are Legend’s epic Tomorrowland closing set from last year as they celebrated 15 years of Tomorrowland classics.
Upon first listen, most people wouldn’t expect that San Diego’s Nyxem is only one artist, doing all the parts of his elaborate sophomore album Behind the Veil of Light all on a Moog synthesizer. It truly sounds like Nyxem’s new work is a full analog progressive metal band with some electronica and theatrical sound design thrown in but in fact, even the very real-sounding guitar parts are done on Moog. We knew the OG synthesizer was taking things to the next level but with this album, Nyxem has leveled up once again.
It’s not only Moog that made these sounds, mind you, as Nyxem the Moog Sub 37 keyboard through a high gain amp modelling DAW to get the realistic guitar sounds on Behind the Veil of Light, so suffice it to say it wasn’t just a standard synth program that made those realistic guitars. What doing these melodies on a synthesizer did, however, was allow Nyxem to take all the sound design and ambient background to the next level on the album.
“War Engine” and “Above the Abyss” are good examples of the extraordinary result of Nyxem’s technique, with expert-sounding guitars supporting the somewhat goth metal-sounding synths that are the main melodies in these tracks. Behind the Veil of Light isn’t all metal-tinged, however, and there are tracks which venture into more ambient, experimtenal indietronica territory.
“Trees of Eternity” is a track where Nyxem’s sound design prowess can really be heard and appreciated by EDM fans, with a sort of dubstep-style beat supporting 80s Tron-Style synths. The track does eventually launch into something more progressive metal but it’s interesting there as well because it shows how electronica and more guitar-based music can exist together and even make a new, heretofore uncategorized sound.
With its double-kicks and blast beat drums, heavy guitars and gothic-style synths, it might be easy for an EDM fan to overlook Nyxem as an electronic producer but that would be a mistake. Since these guitar sounds and composition was indeed done all electronically, Nyxem might be one of the most innovative electronic producers out there now, having come up with this technique that should also have guitar virtuosos questioning their skills. The melding of styles here is surprising and the sound production flawless, so from either side of the keyboard Behind the Veil of Light is more than worth a good hard listen.
Behind the Veil of Light is out now and can be streamed or purchased on Nyxem’s Bandcamp page. Check out his first album Decompiled as well on Spotify.
If you’re looking for house music with a bit of a twang to it, then look no further. Molly Parton has you covered.
Today, Molly Parton is sharing his second single “Redneck” which combines pop, country, and house music into one feel-good track. The track is a blast of summer sunshine introduced by sugary sweet vocals giving a new meaning to the term “redneck.” The track features a steady, bouncy bass line and reutilizes the vocals into a warped, chopped melody. “Redneck” is flashy, fun, and groovy to say the least.
Molly Parton is the new project of Rob “Rez” Resnick known for his work in the duo Timeflies. Taking inspiration from traveling to Nashville and Avicii’s mega-hits from True, Resnick has been carving out a new niche in EDM that blends the best parts of these genres into catchy beats. Starting with his debut track “California” featuring Fairground Saints, Resnick is trailblazing a new kind of pop-power that could dominate the scene’s landscape overnight. As it is, the track “California” has already amassed 60 million views on TikTok and “Redneck” could follow the same trend.
We’ll have to wait and see. But until then, make sure to check out “Redneck” by Molly Parton and it’s new music video!