“Being jaded is lame,” The Black Madonna comments on her experience on Holy Ship!

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“Being jaded is lame,” The Black Madonna comments on her experience on Holy Ship!The Black Madonna Uli Webber Mimag

The Black Madonna might be a little more of a believer in EDM after her experience on the most recent sailing of Holy Ship!. The floating festival, which just anchored its 12th and 13th editions, booked its annual lineup of dance and hip-hop’s best for two weekends of cruise ship revelry. The lineup featured The Black Madonna within a well-rounded cast of talent, spanning from 4B to Skream, Valentino Khan to A-Trak, and while the BBC resident DJ admits she will always feel “most comfortable in a dirty basement or warehouse,” it seems her experience on Holy Ship! has softened her heart for electronic music’s gateway genre. It all started with a word of advice from electronic music’s sagest wiseman, Carl Cox of course. Cox concedes that EDM is a fan’s entry point, and hopefully, from there they will develop their own acquired tastes.

Seeing it unfold aboard the ship, The Black Madonna reflected on her Holy Ship adventure, taking to Twitter with a host of gratitude to the ShipFam for, “teaching an old dog new tricks.” Read The Black Madonna’s cheerful tweets below.

 

Welcome to the Jungle: the local event brand shaping China’s flourishing electronic music culture

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Welcome to the Jungle: the local event brand shaping China’s flourishing electronic music culture8

The air at China’s Electric Jungle music festival is rife with more than just thick blankets of meandering cigarette smoke. The untethered Chinese electronic festival goers beam with the enthusiasm of a culture not yet jaded by the “put-your-fucking-hands-up” of it all. 

China’s sprawling electronic music scene, while invariably unique (despite Western influences), follows the traditional counter-culture-becomes-the-culture plot. Among the local efforts to secure dance music widespread recognition, Jungle Events is most notable for working, not just to throw sensational, world-class festivals with the most sought-after electronic acts, but to promote camaraderie among its supporters.

“Jungle is one of the only domestic festival brands in China. The team is made up of Chinese ravers who want to establish a community of ravers in China, not just throw festivals,” says Chinese trance titan and perennial Jungle billing, Luminn, echoing the company’s distinct ethos.

Signed to Armin van Buuren’s army of global trance talent, Armada, Luminn (real name, JunLiang Fan) speaks ambivalently towards the influx of foreign festival brands embedding themselves in the Chinese market. As the first Chinese artist to secure a clean sweep of spots on the Ultra, EDC, and TRANSMISSION lineups, he posits with authority: Jungle stands out. 

It’s simple enough. The Chinese want to go to raves thrown by Chinese ravers. That’s not to say international muscle hasn’t amassed a robust following in recent years. Ultra China’s first swing in 2017 drew over 40,000 awestruck attendees to its inaugural weekend in Shanghai. The goliath outfits also make an effort to book domestic talent. EDC China’s official flyer from last year sprinkled the hometown heroes alphabetically alongside Alison Wonderland, Disclosure, and the lot—same-size font and all. 

“Rave:” an antiquated term on US or European soil. But inside China’s cocktail of fresh-faced organizers and authorities privy to the most arbitrary whims (event permits count for little), the tired term has earned its wings here. Even the most meticulously planned festival is an inspired act of valor for the Chinese—clandestine warehouse setting be damned. 

KSHMR, born Niles Hollowell-Dhar, reckons he’s performed in China more than any other country outside the US. Resting on the upper-most echelons of both the international big-room scene and Jungle’s most recent lineup, the California native revels in the laundry-fresh feel of China’s developing dance scene.  

“They are probably the most enthusiastic of any fanbase that I have around the world—showing up at the airports when I arrive, and even at the hotels,” says KSHMR. “There’s a vigor and a zeal to the Chinese people that I feel it’s a shame that a lot of the world doesn’t understand.”

Once the effects of the awe-inducing elixir comprised of Skrillex, REZZ, and Martin Garrix, (just a few of Jungle’s other active ingredients) subsides, we remember Jungle 2018’s auspicious undercard. Radiating sweet heat akin to her effervescent live sets is DJ Lizzy. Chinese-turned-New-Jersey-native, Lizzy Wang was the first female Chinese DJ to book a slot at Ultra. Inspirited by Newark’s omnipresent hip-hop culture, Wang started making music to relate to her more rambunctious American peers. Like a video-game heroine, she began unlocking levels of newfound confidence with every DIY production skill acquired from days spent poring over YouTube tutorials.

Wang attributes Jungle’s loyal following to its keen and ever-domestic ear. 

“[The Jungle Team] cares about what the Chinese ravers want to see on a lineup,” says Wang. “It’s about more than selling tickets.” 

Both the Jungle founders, a collective of former University of Southern California transfer students, and Chinese EDM at large, owe at least their root infrastructure to dance music conventions from the states; though what’s evolved since their most nascent notions of EDM world-building is unmistakably domestic. Luminn observes the recent rush of Chinese producers opting to include Mandarin and Cantonese lyrics in their tracks. 

As with nearly any art form, there is a degree of reciprocity inherent in Eastern and Western influences that travels through the global dance music scene. Just before his Saturday performance at Jungle’s most recent installment, globetrotting English-born, part-Chinese trap talent, TroyBoi spoke of his manifold use of Asian instrumentation in his productions (“KinjaBang” and “Souls,” are two of the starkest examples).

“I like to create a worldly sound, with an electronic/hip-hop backbone to it that will translate wherever I play,” he says. “It gives me an edge when I come to tour in places like China.”

In comparison to TroyBoi, the LA-based Drezo was one of the most unanticipated additions to the 2018 lineup. Sporting visuals suited for a biopic on Satan himself, and a nefariously pulsing electro/house sound to match, Drezo’s performance was certainly liable to send Jungle patrons into a head-scratching frenzy. Instead, Drezo’s prescribed dose of strange was just what Saturday’s Bass Stage ordered, accruing a commendable crowd that was as excited as it was confounded.

“Something about the atmosphere here reminds me of the [US] scene around 2011,” says Drezo just after his set. “They go crazy for everything.”

Repeat Jungle dignitary, Terry Zhong, a recent grad of Boston’s Berklee College of Music cites Justin Beiber and Lady Gaga’s blurring the lines of pop and dance music as a vessel for EDM’s Chinese infiltration. The Insomniac talent began fine-tuning his piano prowess at the age of five—since then cracking a sundry of local lineups, including EDC Guangdong, as well as prominent bookings throughout the domestic club circuit. 

“[The Chinese] are trying to emulate what’s happening in the US,” says Zhong. “But now we’re starting to grow our own dance scene, to find a Chinese PLUR.”

Sound familiar? 

 

New study finds heavy metal and electronic music are the top genres for drug consumption among fans at live events

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New study finds heavy metal and electronic music are the top genres for drug consumption among fans at live eventsCoachella18 W1 IngestA 003860

There have been more than a few studies that have looked into the drug consumption habits of electronic music fans, and as the musical genre has gone from emerging to mainstream,researchers continue their search into the stigma associated with EDM fans being fallacy or fact. Drugabuse.com recently did a study that measured not only electronic music fans for their drug and alcohol consumption at live events, but fans from different musical genres to determine how linked musical choices were to consumption. Drugabuse.com surveyed over 970 people about their substance use, their average age when first consuming alcohol or drugs at music events, and why they chose to use these substances at live music events. Their findings, while based on a relatively small pool of people, are enlightening.

Electronic music fans were the most intoxicated concert-goers out of all of the genre’s sampled, however heavy metal fans were a close second. 67.5% of electronic music concert-goers reported intoxication at live music events, while 62.2% of heavy-metal fans reported intoxication.

New study finds heavy metal and electronic music are the top genres for drug consumption among fans at live eventsDrugabuse.com Study

Where heavy metal fans narrowly beat out electronic music fans for the top spot is age of consumption of drugs or alcohol at a live music event. Heavy metal fans, on average, ran into drugs or alcohol at an event starting at 19, whereas electronic music fans reported their first run in being at age 20.

New study finds heavy metal and electronic music are the top genres for drug consumption among fans at live eventsScreen Shot 2018 12 22 At 8.41.08 PM

The main difference between heavy metal and electronic music fans for consumption comes down to why the fans consume at live events. Two in five heavy metal fans reported they consumed drugs or alcohol to reduce social anxiety, while 77% of electronic music fans reported consuming drugs or alcohol to enhance their enjoyment.

Calvin Harris lets fans engage him in impromptu Twitter Q&A, distances himself from EDM

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Calvin Harris lets fans engage him in impromptu Twitter Q&A, distances himself from EDMCalvin Harris 1

Calvin Harris took a short break yesterday from cranking out number No. 1 records and posing for Armani underwear spreads to engage in a slew of Twitter exchanges with fans on the state of his music and “EDM” at large.

The Scottish “Feel So Close” producer answered music and non-music-related inquiries alike with a bit of comedy and a great deal of candor. A glaring takeaway from the repartee is Harris’s delineating his current chosen production style with the now-ubiquitous umbrella term, “EDM.”

Upon a fan asking whether or not he’d be “going back to EDM at some point,” Harris replied,

“EDM has been sad, slow songs for years now. Doesn’t have anything in common with the music I love to make. 2010-2014 edm was more house influenced to me. Anyway now I’m out the bubble and making big records with amazing singers that sound like house music to me…”

Additionally, Harris took the opportunity to suggest he’ll be diving back into the festival circuit soon–now that many of his large-scale projects (namely Funk Wav) are in the books. He also announced an indefinite retirement from his former live performance setup, having purportedly exhausted the format at this point in his career. However, make no mistake: at 34, Harris continues to flex his adventurousness in the studio. Just this month, he offered one of his rare vocal demonstrations on his new house single with Benny Blanco, “I Found You.”

Photo Credit: Rukes

 

 

Steve Aoki unveils foolproof crossover blueprints on ‘Neon Future III’ [Stream]

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Steve Aoki unveils foolproof crossover blueprints on ‘Neon Future III’ [Stream]Steve Aoki Neon Future III

Steve Aoki‘s Neon Future LP installments have always felt like full-blown events, and the main event of the cake-tossing EDM icon’s year has finally arrived: Neon Future III. 

Aoki’s ubiquitous productions are never off the airwaves long. In between his well-endowed festival/touring schedule, the globetrotter found time to pepper 2018 with releases. Despite the consistent output, Neon Futures III easily stands out from the rest of Aoki’s output with an feature-stuffed track list that’s poised for some serious chart damage.

“Neon Future III (Intro)” starts off the LP with a no-vocals-necessary stadium electro scorcher–but the opening volley quickly gives way to an categorically stacked slate of feature-heavy pop-leaning productions. Former One Direction-er, Louis Tomlinson is on-board for radio-ready house on “Just Hold On,” and K-pop sensations BTS are right behind with “Waste It On Me.” Aoki has a potential crossover smash for every genre in the chamber, with everyone from blink-182 to social media queen Bella Thorne in line to lend their talents. For fans of his full-throttle instrumental offerings, the tone struck by the intro track resurfaces at the LP’s close, with none other than Bill Nye lending heavyweight sample clout to album close: “Noble Gas.”

Hakkasan pairs Steve Aoki with Lil Uzi Vert for co-headline performance

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Hakkasan pairs Steve Aoki with Lil Uzi Vert for co-headline performanceSteve Aoki Hakkasan Credit Joe Janet

Las Vegas nightlife hub, Hakkasan, has a proven knack for pairing top EDM talent with the most in-demand hip-hop acts in the game right now, but they’re one-upping themselves with their latest booking. Dim Mak kingpin Steve Aoki is primed to take over the club on November 15 with one of rap’s most sought-after performers of the moment, Lil Uzi Vert, for the duo’s first ever co-headlining performance. While Uzi and Aoki have yet to officially collaborate, a shared stage in Las Vegas this month could give way to a studio link sometime down the line.

Lil Uzi Vert and Steve Aoki’s shared headline performance comes amid a packed month of entertainment on the Las Vegas strip. Heavy hitters like NGHTMRE, Kaskade, Tiësto, and Matoma are all also slated to perform at Hakkasan and the club’s affiliated properties across the month of November. Find Hakkasan’s full November lineup below.

For more information or to purchase tickets, visit Hakkasan’s website here. 

Hakkasan

Thursday, Nov. 1

Main Club: Lil Jon

Friday, Nov. 2

Main Club: NGHTMRE

Saturday, Nov. 3

Main Club: Loud Luxury

Sunday, Nov. 4

Main Club: Salvatore Ganacci

Thursday, Nov. 8

Main Club: Borgore

Friday, Nov. 9

Main Club: NGHTMRE

Saturday, Nov. 10

Main Club: Tiësto

Ling Ling Club: Phoreyz

Sunday, Nov. 11 | “Rock with Me”

Main Club: Jeff Retro

Thursday, Nov. 15

Main Club: Steve Aoki with Lil Uzi Vert

Ling Ling Club: DJ Dash

Friday, Nov. 16

Main Club: Gryffin

Saturday, Nov. 17

Main Club: Kaskade

Sunday, Nov. 18

Main Club: Crankdat

Thursday, Nov. 22

Main Club: Fergie DJ

Friday, Nov. 23

Main Club: Borgeous

Saturday, Nov. 24

Main Club: Matoma

Sunday, Nov. 25

Main Club: Jeff Retro

Thursday, Nov. 29

Main Club: DJ Shift

Friday, Nov. 30

Main Club: Matoma

JEWEL Nightclub

Friday, Nov. 2

IRIE

Saturday, Nov. 3

DJ Karma

Monday, Nov. 5

FAED

Friday, Nov. 9

Brody Jenner

Saturday, Nov. 10

DJ Sourmilk with Dzeko

Monday, Nov.12

DJ E-Rock

Friday, Nov. 16

blackbear

Saturday, Nov. 17

DJ Drama

Monday, Nov. 19

DJ Shift

Friday, Nov. 23

DJ Turbulence

Saturday, Nov. 24

Scooter

Monday, Nov. 26

DJ Karma

Friday, Nov. 30

Just Blaze

Omnia Nightclub

Thursday, Nov. 1

Heart of OMNIA: Maria Romano

Friday, Nov. 2

Main Club: Party Favor

Heart of OMNIA: DJ Nova

Saturday, Nov. 3

Main Club: Zedd

Heart of OMNIA: DJ Lucky Lou

Terrace: Pedi

Sunday, Nov. 4

Heart of OMNIA: Phoreyz

Tuesday, Nov. 6

Main Club: Fergie DJ

Heart of OMNIA: DJ Crooked

Thursday, Nov. 8

Heart of OMNIA: Mikey Francis

Friday, Nov. 9

Main Club: Kaskade

Heart of OMNIA: Kid Conrad

Terrace: Fabian

Saturday, Nov. 10

Main Club: Zedd

Heart of OMNIA: DJ Nova

Terrace: Mikey Francis

Sunday, Nov. 11

Heart of OMNIA: DJ Dash

Tuesday, Nov. 13

Main Club: Zedd

Heart of OMNIA: Wild DESEO – hosted by AJ Kallejero with DJ Exile

Thursday, Nov. 15

Heart of OMNIA: Mondo

Friday, Nov. 16

Main Club: Steve Aoki

Heart of OMNIA: Maria Romano

Saturday, Nov. 17

Main Club: Matoma

Heart of OMNIA: NVM

Sunday, Nov. 18

Heart of OMNIA: DJ Stretch

Tuesday, Nov. 20

Main Club: Burns

Heart of OMNIA: DJ Lucky Lou

Thursday, Nov. 22

Heart of OMNIA: DJ Dash

Friday, Nov. 23

Main Club: Gryffin

Heart of OMNIA: OB One

Saturday, Nov. 24

Main Club: Steve Aoki Birthday Celebration

Heart of OMNIA: Phoreyz

Sunday, Nov. 25

Heart of OMNIA: Pedi

Tuesday, Nov. 27

Main Club: Fergie DJ

Heart of OMNIA: DJ OB One

Thursday, Nov. 29

Heart of OMNIA: DJ D-Miles

Friday, Nov. 30

Main Club: Loud Luxury

Heart of OMNIA: DJ Shift

Martin Garrix continues release streak with ‘Access’

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Martin Garrix continues release streak with ‘Access’Access Martin Garri

Something seems to be brewing in the Martin Garrix world. The EDM wunderkind has been on an ambitious release streak, putting out three new singles in the span of a week while also teasing something mysterious on his website. No word as to what exactly he has planned — be it an upcoming EP, or an album — however, Garrix is continuing his ongoing roll with a fourth single.

“Access” is a particularly special one to fans, having been played out initially as a sought-after ID under the name of “Chinatown.” Name change aside, the track’s makeup remains the same as what had initially caught attention in the first place, catalyzing a euphoric rush in its listeners with its light, easygoing synthwork and nostalgic riffs that feel like a warm breeze on a sunny day. Whatever Garrix has planned, it seems like quite the venture, and followers are anxiously awaiting to see the final product.

 

Vicetone time travel with triumphant Avicii tribute, ‘South Beach’

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Vicetone time travel with triumphant Avicii tribute, ‘South Beach’Vicetone South Beach Avicii Tribute

By any measure, Vicetone has the secret formula for festival and club smashing EDM anthems down cold. The dutch duo have garnered tens of millions of streams on the strength of hits like “Neveda” and “Astronomia.” Now, Vicetone delivers something special with “South Beach,” a track the group have dubbed their own musical tribute to Avicii.

“South Beach” is an instant uplifter, opening on an infectious synth hook that primes listeners for impact. Drums engage beneath a wall of beaming chords before landing in a swelling, string powered breakdown. The track’s finale is triumphant and joyful, and instantly transports back to late 2000s dance music nostalgia. Although the crisp and melodic production comes Vicetone standard, the origins of the track’s throwback feels become crystal clear from the duo’s backstory posted to social media.

The song was among the first they ever made, and management advised them not to release it given the clear influence of their reverence for Avicii in the track. When the legend passed away in April, Vicetone managed to find that song on an old hard drive and finally finish it. Nine years later, the song has taken on new meaning as a tribute from the duo to one of their musical heroes. “South Beach” is an impactful, time-traveling reminder of just how much Avicii affected today’s biggest EDM stars.

 

 

 

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Premiere: Benzi drops ‘EDAT PACK VOL. 2’ stocked with remixes of Skrillex, Drake, Lil Wayne and more [Free Download]

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Premiere: Benzi drops ‘EDAT PACK VOL. 2’ stocked with remixes of Skrillex, Drake, Lil Wayne and more [Free Download]Edat Pack Volume 2 Artwork

Your stepdad’s favorite DJ is back at it. Benzi returns with another one of his stacked periodic drops, giving away EDAT PACK VOL. 2 completely free of charge, as per usual, loaded with a grip of his famous personal edits. Between deliveries, the legendary remixer’s personal cuts get passed around like clout trading cards. Now he has officially dropped off his summer batch, featuring stacked edits and mashes that include Skrillex, Drake, Lil Wayne, ATLiens, Travis Scott, and more.

Download EDAT PACK Vol. 2 here

Enlisting fellow producers CRNKN, New York’s DJ CHUWE, and others for some added firepower, Benzi orchestrates a ten-track collection of certified set list weapons, packed with bridge-gapping edits that stitch together dub, hip-hop, drum n’ bass, and trap. Find the full EDAT PACK VOL. 2 track list here and grab the free download below.

EDAT PACK VOL. 2 Track list:

6ix9ine x Doreus – Stoopid (BENZI x CHUWE EDAT)
Cardi B x Rickyxsan & Hydraulix – Bickenhead (BENZI EDAT)
Drake x Skrillex – Mob Ties UK (BENZI x GENTZ EDAT)
Flipp Dinero x GRAVEDGR – Leave Me Alone (BENZI x CHUWE EDAT)
French Montana x ATLiens – No Stylist (BENZI x CAZES EDAT)
Lil Baby x Badrapper – Drip Too Hard (BENZI x GENTZ EDAT)
Lil Wayne x Kompany – Make It Rain (BENZI x CRNKN 2k19 EDAT)
Smokepurpp x Estremo – Nephew (BENZI EDAT)
Travis Scott x TYNAN & Disto – STARGAZING (NvrLeft x BENZI EDAT)
Young Thug x UNKWN – Chanel (Go Get It) (BENZI x CAZES EDAT)

Download EDAT PACK Vol. 2 here

Calvin Harris and friends celebrate Labor Day weekend with Hakkasan

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Calvin Harris and friends celebrate Labor Day weekend with HakkasanHakkasan Calvin Harris Photo Credit Joe Janet 1

Las Vegas-based Hakkasan Group is known for its worldwide hospitality, five-star restaurants and top-of-the-line night clubs which span from the eponymous Hakkasan, Omnia, and beyond. The brand’s organizers have been hard at work preparing their institutions for Labor Day festivities around the corner, and are finally ready to reveal the supremely-stacked bill of guest talent to headline throughout the weekend of August 30 to September 3.

Calvin Harris, Tïesto, and Martin Garrix are just a few names participating in the festivities, along with hip-hop phenomenon Lil’ Jon, who is no stranger to Hakkasan Group’s events. It’s hard to resist spending the holiday weekend among such legendary, chart-topping artists. Not to mention, no matter then venue, each performance is guaranteed to be accompanied by Hakkasan production standards, which include top class lighting and visuals, sound, and layout.

Omnia’s Vegas branch at Caesars Palace kicks off its Labor Day Weekend on Friday, August 31 with Calvin Harris, and Generic and DJ Dash as his opening acts. Zedd and DJ Lucky You take over on September 1. Finally, Martin Garrix closes out the weekend with DJ Bamboozle on September 2.

Jewel Nightclub, situated in the Aria Resort & Casino, has its share of talent as well. Playboi Carti opening festivities there on August 31. Tyga comes through on September 1, with the cake-throwing talent Steve Aoki closing out on Sunday, September 2.

Get ready to scream “HEY!” And “OKAY!” With Lil Jon at Hakkasan on Thursday, August 30. Hardwell swings by with Kill the Buzz on August 31. Tiesto headlines with Dzeko and DJ Five on Saturday, September 1, with an encore performance by Calvin Harris and Generik on Sunday, September 2. 1OAK Nightclub at The Mirage Hotel & Casino celebrates the end of summer with the “Panda” singer, Desiigner on Friday, August 31st, along with O.T. Genasis on September 1st. 

Pool parties during the day time hours are set to bring an oasis from the heat in the funnest of fashions. Wet Republic will be starting off its afternoon festivities Tïesto and Dzeko at the helm, with Steve Aoki and Kaskade joining the fray on September 1. Martin Garrix makes plays a daytime cameo alongside Justin Mylo on September 2. Liquid Pool Lounge at will be hosting the likes of Scooter & Lavelle, DJ E-Rock, DJ Drama, BRKYLN, DJ Buza. Last, but not least, partiers can also enjoy Greg Lopez, G-Squared, Zsuzsanna, and DJ Que at the Bare Pool Lounge in The Mirage if none of the previous events mentioned don’t fit their fance. On that note the Barekini Contest with DJ Flow on Monday, September 3 is set to be a fun cap off for the weekend. All in all, Hakkasan is gearing up to close out festival season in style.