AIM Festival unveils three-tiered lineup of bass, techno and trance for 2018 edition

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AIM Festival 2018

Home to a multitude of culinary delights, architectural history, and a thriving underground dance music scene, the city of Montréal showcases a quintessential example of Canadian charm.

Artists continually praise the city for its people and crowds; deeming them as respectful of others, yet definitely know how to get down. To accompany the numerous club residencies and events throughout the summer stands AIM Festival, a three-day camping festival hosted in Parc Carillon. Located on the outskirts of the city, AIM strives to craft an immersive experience with live artistic additions, scheduled community workshops and a core focus on maintaining an environmentally-conscious setting.

Assembling an assortment of 60+ artists over five stages, attendees are invited to a three days filled with 32 hours of nonstop music; what some may vouch for as the perfect weekend escape.

As the curation of the lineup has a clear focus on trance, bass and techno acts, the 2018 edition brings out the best of each genre, inviting a bounteous selection of long-standing class acts. From timeless talent like Danny Tenaglia and Sasha, a rare six hour set from Ben Gold, and the inclusion of Lee Burridge‘s enchanting “All Day I Dream” event series, AIM Festival effortlessly strikes a balance of authenticity and excellence, and reinforces Montréal’s integral part to the growth of dance music throughout the country.

AIM Festival 2018

GA, VIP and camping passes are available for purchase here

deadmau5 is currently developing his own electronic game

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deadmau5 isn’t ‘playing games’ when it comes to the foundation of his fully equipped LAN/gaming center in Canada. Well, maybe just one.

The producer is already at work on a first-person shooter game, just after announcing his intent to establish a gaming mega center in Milton. Given its nascent stages, the game will take “a year at least” to officially release.

A game engine instituted by Epic Games, Unreal Engine is developing the game. Although the program remains in the “early alpha” testing stage, deadmau5 has already offered the public a preview of what the game will look like during a recent Twitch broadcast in which he streamed himself playing a prototype of the game.

“We’re just setting up some basic mechanics, getting a space together where we can jam out in an arena of sorts and spitball ideas…once we’ve agreed on that and nailed in network code and sever delegation, we head down the ‘fun and original secondary objective’ route,” deadmau5 has said of the state of the project.


U4RIA Festival announces full-fledged, two day lineup for Toronto trance fans

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U4RIA Festival

Though it may seem like house and bass music are the most recent craze to draw people into the dance music community, trance remains one of the long-standing genres with steady growth around the world. A key facet to the rave scene for over 30 years, fans are captivated by the traits that characterize the genre; harmonious melodies, soaring vocals and a distinct musical form that lulls listeneres into an almost hypnotic state.

Ringing in the summer with the first of it’s kind, Electric Escape is hosting U4RIA Festival; Canada’s first two-day trance festival. Held over the first weekend of June, attendees will be treated to an abundance of trance newcomers and fan-favorites at the Toronto Event Centre, conveniently located just outside the downtown sphere.

Planned with care and the attendees’ comfort at the forefront, U4RIA offers three stages, indoor/outdoor access and an outdoor pool bar to top the weekend off. With over 30+ international and local artists in each realm of the trance genre, fans will be treated to the likes of Astrix, MaRLo, and John O’ Callaghan over the weekend.

Dancing Astronaut spoke with Stanley Ho, the festival founder to learn about how U4RIA stands out from other nation-wide events, and his thoughts on the growth of the trance scene vs. the currently prominent bass scene:

What does U4RIA do to stand out from the surrounding Canadian festivals and events?

U4RIA is an all-trance music festival. It’s not a typical mixed-genre event as it was curated to focus on one specific genre only and also to show the world how great Canada’s trance community is. We have assembled the most sought-after artists that you typically won’t see at every major festival in Canada, but that you would find at marquee global trance events like Transmission and Dreamstate Luminosity. Trance is making its mark again across the globe and U4RIA hopes to establish itself as Canada’s leading trance festival, which is not to be missed.

How have you seen the trance scene evolve over the last five years, and how does it differ from the currently reigning bass phase? 

The trance scene has always been around amongst trance purists and such, however, this time it is making its return to the main stage and mainstream crowd and it still has a lot of growth potential to come. As an event producer from Canada’s west coast for over 19+ years, I have seen the scene evolve across our nation. The bass and trance scene used to go head to head in the 2000s in terms of popularity. Trance was predominantly the top genre in electronic music until around 2010 across the globe. However, the North American scene was still pretty much underground until 2009-10. Inspiring artists were looking for a sound to break into mainstream pop and radio channels in North America. Just as trance was starting to break into the mainstream, along came house music which many will also classify as that acronym we all love to hate: EDM. With a flair of feel good sounds, catchy pop vocals, and hot trance synths, draped over heavy bass drops and electrifying dancefloor anthems, a clear winner was born. Electro house, bass house, future house, G-house, big room house and progressive house had a strong grasp of the global dance music scene from 2010 onwards and showed no signs slowing down. Amidst this time, many trance listeners tastes evolved and grew into the new house music sound as it became more and more mainstream. Keep in mind this was music could be heard on the radio while driving to work or while you’re at the gym, or even at top 40 bars and nightclubs that once only played radio-friendly pop music. Safe to say, EDM and all of the house music sub-genres associated with it was everywhere and could not be avoided. As listeners of this EDM-infused house music continued to evolve, many were looking for music with a bit more depth and meaning. They craved compositions which had multiple levels to them and were much more than a catchy chorus combined with an epic drop. Many found themselves gravitating back to trance through artists like Above & Beyond, Armin van Buuren, Andrew Rayel who’ve done a fantastic job at making trancey-house music aka. trouse, and bringing it to the main stage in settings like Ultra Music Festival, Tomorrowland and EDC. The 138 bpm scene of uplifting trance, vocal trance, tech trance and even progressive and full-on psy trance also continued to grow aggressively and exponentially with even more events like Dreamstate, Transmission, and A State of Trance being held on a global scale. While the reigning bass scene has always been around, their sound also evolved from the heavy drum and bass to a having a much more listener-friendly vibe which appealed to the masses. In general, trance and bass are not much different globally in terms of evolution over the past 5 years. Both sounds are digital/electronic and the beauty is there is no language barrier for either. The only difference between both genres popularity depends on the event producers in your area. It takes event producers a lot of time, commitment, dedication and funding to push a genre to mainstream. However, I will cut this short as I could keep on going for hours on this topic so I’ll get to the point. U4RIA will be an event to showcase some of the world’s finest trance artists that you may not have heard of before, but you will surely not be disappointed by. Come with an open mind and let us take everyone on a journey into trance.

U4ria Festival 2018

One day and weekend passes are available for purchase online

Snowbombing Canada announces headliners ODESZA and Cardi B for 2018 edition

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Photo Credit: Andrew Whitton

From Montreal’s Igloofest, to the gone-but-never-forgotten Brrrrr Winter Music Festival in Toronto, Canadians are incredibly fortunate to host a plenitude of outdoor-winter events throughout the years. Though winter is close to being over and the inaugural start to festival season approaches, Snowbombing Canada is here to remind everyone that there’s never a wrong time to party in the snow.

Fusing the worlds of winter-sports and dance music into a winter-wonderland for four days and nights, Snowbombing Canada takes place from April 5–9 amidst Sun Peaks Valley; one of the hidden treasures of Canada’s West coast. With success in booking distinguished and complementary dance/hip-hop headliners, last year’s event saw Kaskade and Ludacris close out the event.

As the 2018 edition nears, fan-favorite duo ODESZA and hip-hop queen Cardi B are set to headline the “Forest Stage”, appropriately located in between the panoramic views of snow-capped mountains and towering trees. Boasting a plethora of additional acts like Black Tiger Sex Machine, Gorgon City and Troyboi, Snowbombing has curated a detailed lineup that suits the festival’s exuberant vibe.

Snowboarders and skiers are treated to the best of both worlds; shredding during the day and dancing at night. Activities like ‘Alpine Yoga’, ‘The Snowlympics’ and some cheeky ‘Chair Life Speed Dating’ add unique attributes that turn guests from attendees, into Snowbombing veterans.

Snowbombing Canada 2018

Festival passes, accommodation and transportation are all available online

New device from Pioneer set to better distribute royalties to artists

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SOCAN, the Society of Composers, Authors, and Music Publishers of Canada, have teamed with Pioneer to better track what is being played in clubs and venues across the country and, in turn, better distribute royalties to the proper artists.

Dubbed KUVO, the device plugs directly into the performer’s mixing board and collects the metadata from the tracks that are being played. In doing so, KUBO can then send the information directly to SOCAN who will then distribute royalties to the proper artists. This is a vast improvement over DJs providing their own playlists, as many don’t plan their sets out in advance and are then liable to forget a track or be unable to provide a list at all.

SOCAN is set to begin the roll out the KUVO devices to clubs, venues, and festivals starting in Toronto — entirely for free.

Photo Credit: @pioneerdjusa/Instagram

H/T: Billboard

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Wayhome Music Festival offers Fyre Festival ticket-holders free tickets

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A rare positive has arisen from  the never-ending saga of the disastrous Fyre Festival as the Canadian-based Wayhome Music Festival has decided to lend a helping-hand to the distraught, trust-fund occupying attendees who suffered through 48 hours of rationed food portions while stranded on the Bahamian island until outgoing flights resumed.

Embracing the stereotypical Canadian way of life, the Wayhome committee announced their incredible gesture of kindness by stating that “all 2017 Fyre Festival ticket holders can redeem their ticket for a 2017 WayHome General Admission Ticket by sending a copy of their unique confirmed Fyre Festival ticket to the following address;”

Featuring major artists like Flume, Justice, Illenium, Louis the Child, Marshmello, and Porter Robinson, Wayhome welcomes their doors from July 28-30 to all members of the dance music community, even if they happen to be Fyre festival refugees.


After the unsuspecting cancellation of Pemberton Music Festival, Wayhome has decided to extend their generosity to ticket-holders of the west-coast festival. Catching everyone by surprise after the uber late announcement of their 2017 lineup, the social downfall of the festival began when attendees caught word of the parent company’s bankruptcy, and statement regarding “no automatic refunds” for ticket holders.

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Pemberton Music Festival unexpectedly announces cancellation with no refund

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Pemberton Music Festival didn’t take long to establish itself as one of Canada’s biggest festivals. The British Columbian affair was known for its picturesque surrounding scenery and diverse, Coachella-esque lineup which featured a large roster of artists across the musical spectrum.

Despite its incredible look on paper, the event has had a notoriously tattered past, having to cancel two subsequent editions after its debut in 2008 and not returning until its three year run from 2014-2016. On May 18, Pemberton met its official demise. Not only will it not be taking place this July, but the festival has now filed bankruptcy, according to documents discovered by Global News.

Ticket holders were met with even worse news – no refunds will be given due to the event’s protection under bankruptcy law. If they do wish to see any of their funds returned, they’d have to file a proof of claim as a creditor through the courts. Even if they do so, generally approved proof of claims are paid out in installments over the period of bankruptcy.

Artists slated to headline this year included Major Lazer, Carnage, Zeds Dead, and more. Huka Entertainment, the primary promoters of the event, had the following statement:

“For the past four years, Huka Entertainment has worked to create a one-of-a-kind experience in the most beautiful place on earth. We are heartbroken to see the 2017 Pemberton Music Festival cancelled.

As a contract producer, Huka did not make the decision to cancel the festival. That decision was made by the Pemberton Music Festival, LP. We are extremely disappointed for our fans, artists and all of our partners who have supported the festival over the years.”

H/T: Global News

M83 will score futuristic new Cirque Du Soleil show, VOLTA

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Anthony Gonzales, the creative force behind the effervescent electronic music band M83, will be collaborating with Cirque du Soleil on an upcoming circus experience, VOLTA. Gonzales will compose the score and serve as musical director for the show. The futuristic event will make its official debut in Cirque du Soleil’s home city of Montreal, Canada in spring of 2017.

The show’s website describes VOLTA as such:

VOLTA tells a spellbinding story about the freedom to choose and the thrill of blazing your own trail. Inspired in part by the adventurous spirit that fuels the culture of action sports, the show weaves the adrenaline rush of acrobatics into a visually striking world driven by a stirring melodic score.

VOLTA is a story of transformation. It is about being true to oneself, fulfilling one’s true potential, and the power of the group to make that possible. It celebrates freedom as a movement.

Though the score will be Gonzales first in a live setting, VOLTA’s futuristic aesthetic seems to perfectly complement many of the themes in M83’s back catalogue. Tickets are already on sale at the Cirque du Soleil website here.

Via: Pitchfork

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