As Alison Wonderland continues to ascend in the electronic realm, she’s become a fixture in the global dance scene while slowly rolling out new productions. She’s allowed her live performances to speak for themselves — a wise decision — with an upcoming installment at Coachella a high point of anticipation. Another sign of her powerful production abilities and strength of her fanbase: she’s the highest billed female DJ set to perform at the festival in 2018.
Presently, Wonderland’s preparing to release her new album, AWAKE, and now released its very first track.
Unlike her most recent trap-ridden single, “Happy Place,” which found Wonderland in a place of considerable sonic comfort and calculated drops, “Church” is an empowering, future pop single. Its lyrics are challenging and demands that all comply to her utterance, “You better, treat me like church.”
Words by: Christina Hernandez, Katie Daubert, and Kanvar Koli
Today’s electronic music scene is a blessing and a curse. Accessing music across all genres and subgenres has never been easier; same goes for making it. However, with such abundance comes saturation; where to even begin seeking out new music that speaks to the soul?
Such daunting task is thankfully made much easier thanks to radio shows, many of which are generously bestowed upon the public by DJs who go the extra mile to bring their sounds to the masses. These regular occurrences not only shine a glimpse into the artist themselves, but also provide a more concise stream of neatly-organized music to look forward to, and fall in love with.
Given the importance of such shows in the electronic sphere, Dancing Astronaut has chosen 10 radio shows, in no particular order, that have particularly stood out in 2017.
Radio Wonderland (Alison Wonderland)
Alison Wonderland’s refreshing radio show started quite recently, with the first installment of Wonderland’s radio imprint airing on May 1, 2017. Having already featured guests like Slander and Valentino Khan, Radio Wonderland has already established itself as a platform for quality music.
Deadbeats Radio (Zeds Dead)
Deadbeats Radio was launched in summer of 2017, and has wasted no time in climbing to the top of ranks for its forward-thinking look on bass music and overall embodiment of the Zeds Dead aesthetic.
In addition to being a prime source for all things Deadbeats-related, the show also made waves with its nostalgia-ridden 17th episode, which featured a slew of tracks that inspired the influential and well-loved bass duo that we see today.
The Birdhouse (Claude VonStroke)
Claude Vonstroke maintains his reputation as a dance pioneer with his weekly radio show: THE BIRDHOUSE. This year, the show provided an extension of Vonstroke’s carefully-curated musical output where he continues to showcase some of the finest and latest independent house, techno and bass music producers and DJs. Not only did the show celebrate its two year anniversary in the 105th episode with a live mix from the host himself, but also featured a delectable range of legendary and up-and-coming artists like Tensnake, Sacha Robotti, MIJA, Claptone, and more.
Diplo & Friends
Diplo & Friends is easily one of the gold standards when it comes to radio shows. Even after half a decade, Diplo & Friends continues to impress, as it handed mix debuts to breakout stars Illenium and Ekali while also featuring some of Diplo’s best live sets— including his performance at Afrikaburn in South Africa.
AM Only & Sirius XM joined forces in 2016 to create The Cookout as a way to showcase the next generation of dance music icons. Since then, the weekly show has become a fixture within the electronic scene for its impeccable selection of talent joining on for mix duties. This year witnessed another bountiful slate of caliber music, curated by the likes of TOKiMONSTA, Malaa, Giraffage, and Whethan, to name a *very* few. It’s safe to say that this podcast is a “must-follow.”
Night Owl Radio (Insomniac)
Insomniac has stretched far beyond being simple promoters. The behemoth brand, ran by Pasquale Rotella, launched Night Owl Radio in 2015 alongside Sirius XM. It has since become a well-loved happenstance, known for its diversity in guest selection and consistency in quality. This tradition continued on relentlessly throughout the past year, inviting guests like Flosstradamus, Shiba San, and more, and also earning points for its Kaskade takeover.
Radio One residency – deadmau5
Another radio show inaugurated in 2017, deadmau5’s BBC radio one residency has been nothing short of spectacular. The Canadian legend made full use of the platform available to him, helping to break through new Mau5trap talent, reviving his dormant testpilot alter-ego, and consistently delivering some memorable techno/progressive/electronica sets. Though the residency has come to an end, fans were delighted at deadmau5′ announcement that in 2018 he’d be launching a brand new show on his own podcast.
Global Trance Grooves (John 00 Fleming)
John 00 Fleming’s Global Trance Grooves has become a stalwart in the underground trance scene throughout its decade-plus of existence, bringing the best and most underrated talent and songs into its fold each month.
What sets this series apart from others is Fleming’s unrelenting drive to remind the masses of trance’s true ethos, in a time where he feels it’s been diluted and mischaracterized. Everything under the sun is covered, from lush progressive, to Goa, to subtle hints of uplifting. Having amassed a powerful lineup of guest mixes over the past 12 months, including Hernan Cattaneo, Airwave, and Sean Tyas, 2017 has certainly been the year of Global Trance Grooves.
EPIC Radio (Eric Prydz)
This year saw the return of EPIC Radio on Beats 1, curated by the renowned Swedish icon Eric Prydz. A seasoned vet in pushing the boundaries of electronic music, Eric Prydz keeps things interesting in his highly-acclaimed mixes by featuring a medley of exclusive tracks, unreleased bootlegs, and private remixes. Only a few months ago, he used his radio show as a platform to debut eight new IDs in the eighteenth episode of his Beats 1, EPIC Radio, inciting excitement from fans and heightening the anticipation of new music to come.
Fool’s Gold Radio (A-Trak)
A-Trak‘s launched his Fool’s Gold Radio show six years ago, and has since stood as a revered platform of today’s biggest and brightest sounds in dance music – all curated by the famed turntablist himself. Earlier this year, the Fool’s Gold label celebrated its 10-year anniversary, followed by the producer’s return to the Beats 1 lineup on Apple Music with a brand new open format for his Fool’s Gold Radio show which now supports a rotation of news, interviews, and music from his label and music contemporaries.
Australia joined the ranks of 25 other countries to officially legalize gay marriage on December 7, causing a wave of celebration over a legal battle that has been drawn out in the country for 13 years.
Alison Wonderland was on tour in home country at the height of festivities surrounding this development, and thus decided to use her gig in Sydney to show her support in an emotive fashion. The songstress assisted a woman in making her proposal unforgettable bringing the happy couple on stage and later giving them a shout-out on Twitter while expressing pride in her country.
The battle for marriage rights began in 2004, when the parliament amended the Marriage Act to ban the institution for gays. Since then, an overwhelming display of support for the return of their rights led to a new vote that officiated gay marriage as a legal right.
Multi-instrumentalist Ryan Browne has crafted a powerful rework of the track that dabbles in genres ranging from metal to dubstep – all while holding fast to the track’s original emotive power. He’s shown the work that went into the track in a short video posted to his Facebook page, which shows the producer performing both the drum and guitar aspects of his remix.
With the incorporation of these instruments, Browne gives the listener a behind-the-scenes look at his creative process. As dance music fans increasingly push for live instrumental components in their favorite artists’ performances, productions like Browne’s are crucial to eliminating the button-pushing-only stereotype that exists in the dance music community.
Browne’s “Messiah” remix is a mercilessly complex journey that transcends genres and categorizations to take the listener on a wild ride.
Over the past few weeks, reports of sexual harassment and sexual assault have made headlines across the country. From accusations against Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein to accusations against music producer The Gaslamp Killer, women of all backgrounds are coming forward to tell their stories of harassment and assault. Additionally, a social media campaign called “Me Too,” started by actress Alyssa Milano, has been spreading like wildfire, showing the widespread occurrence of such incidents.
In light of recent events, Alison Wonderland took to Twitter to share her personal story with sexual harassment in the workplace. The producer has been a fierce advocate for women’s rights and has previously spoken up about sexism and mental illness, using her platform to reach fans around the world and let them know they’re not alone.
In the following series of tweets, the producer tells the story of how she was sexually harassed by a former boss and how human resources failed to penalize him or investigate the accusation. She finds the man’s wife’s Facebook profile and sends her a message to let her know what happened.
The next day I went to HR & they said “well u are pretty and he was drunk” then subtly told me if I took it any further I would lose my job.
While Ekali has not been shy about teasing the project, there is not yet a release date. The three track remix EP also includes edits from Josh Pan x X&G and Sober Rob x Oshi. Stay tuned for more information about the upcoming project, and watch the clip above to get a taste of how Skrillex & Ronny J’s edit sounds live.
Labor day weekend marked this year’s second installment of Prime Social Group’s Breakaway Music Festival, an annual festival series that finds its home in cities in and around major league soccer venues. This year’s holiday weekend event found itself gracing the grounds of Columbus, Ohio’s Columbus Crew stadium. While the city has been recognized amongst the country’s fastest growing metropolis, currently standing at number three, a drive through the state may suggest a different narrative. The route to Columbus and much of the state of Ohio is ridden with farmland, the surefire sign of Midwestern heartland. Fortunately, Columbus could not be more of an antithesis to this pseudo-Ohio narrative. Prime Social group, in particular, is a driving force behind this “mundane-Midwest” myth-busting.
Photo courtesy of Alex Powell.
Prime Social Group is a full-service concert promotions group based in the city that focuses on college markets across the country. Some of its events exclusive to Ohio include a 90’s themed summer festival, the Ohio University Number festival, and the multi-city spanning Halloween-themed Haunted Fest which has booked acts for this year that include Hardwell, Yellow Claw, and more. PSG’s event set out to see a continuance of its Breakaway Festival later this year in Charlotte, North Carolina, where Zedd is set to headline. Prior to the Columbus event, it had stopped in Grand Rapids, Michigan.
Tiësto, Slushii, Borgore, Jai Wolf, and Louis the Child are names that are slated to hit the stage later this fall in Columbus on behalf of PSG. Between a consistent envelope pushing booking team and a pronounced understanding of the idiosyncrasy that the college market desires, PSG’s rosters speak volumes for its respective cities’ entertainment markets. It’s safe to say the electronic music scene would not be the same in the Midwest—and certainly not in Columbus—without the companies’ efforts.
Columbus’ 2017 Breakaway return was an aggressive amalgamation of hip-hop and electronic artists, one that broke the boundaries of sonically-constricted line-ups. Priding themselves on booking up-and-coming artists that reach beyond the confines of genres, Prime Social group saw out that they achieved to create a breakaway experience in its own right. This year’s festival was a testament to that success.
Last year’s Columbus festival bill saw the likes of hip-hop’s ultimate sweetie, Chance the Rapper, as well as Dillion Francis, RL Grime, Alison Wonderland, Corrupt, and Gryffin. Filling in the hip-hop shoes of Chance’s aggressive annunciation meets poetic style this year was SuperDuperKyle. Most well known for his breakout single “iSpy,” featuring American genre nonconformer Lil Yachty—who was also at the festival—SuperDuperKyle brought forth an outrageously energetic performance. Çhanneling Kid and Play’s nineties aura was an artist who lured the crowd in for an auspicious evening. Followed up by 3LAU, Oliver Heldens, Lil Yachty, and then rave rap’s finest Travis Scott on the main stage.
Photo courtesy of Tyler Church.
Across the way, on the prime stage Friday evening was an undercard assemblage of equally impressive acts such as Crankdat, Shaun Frank, THEY., Malaa, and Getter. The prime stage exemplified a yearning for some of electronic music’s more heavy-hitting acts at the moment. The impressive array of hip-hop and electronic was a match made in heaven for its respective young audience and exemplified PSG’s audience understanding.
Photo courtesy of Tyler Church.
Despite massive amounts of rain dumping on Saturday’s attendees, the festival’s booking was a quintessential crowd pleaser. Starting off the second day with the heavy-hitting REZZ collaborator, the up and comer K?D, the afternoon was primed for an exhilarating experience. Leading up to the closing of the two-day festival was Galantis who was followed by Diplo on the main stage— whilst Mija and EDM’s favorite kitty Cashmere Cat closed out the prime stage. Columbus laid host to some of music’s most exuberant acts.
Photo courtesy of Tyler Church.
By bringing some of the world’s biggest names to the stage alongside supporting local and regional artists, the event was an energetic enigma. Despite being dealt mother nature’s infamous festival surprise the festival was an overwhelming success for its young audience and a telling testament of an ever-expanding company and cities’ success.