Ultra’s 2018 lineup may have leaked, according to multiple sources. Earlier this evening Empire of the Sun posted the leak to Instagram but they have since removed the post. Popular festival news twitter account, The Festive Owl, posted the leak to social media with a detailed account of the aforementioned series of events. Although it is unconfirmed as to whether the leak is in fact fully accurate, Empire of the Sun’s sharing of the festival’s poster increases the likelihood that the leak is indeed accurate and The Festive Owl’s certainty on the matter is certainly compelling.
Enigmatic Australian electronic duo Empire of the Sun has returned with a new EP On Our Way Home. The new release is the group’s first since their last LP Two Vines debuted inOctober 2016 and features three new tracks: “On Our Way Home,” “Two Leaves” and three versions of ” Way To Go.” The alt-electro pioneers have also released stunning videos to accompany two of the tracks, with groundbreaking Japanese media director Nobumichi Asai of WOW Productions crafting an especially stunning visual manifestation for “Way To Go.”
The video dropped yesterday and utilizes innovative 3D scanning technology, motion, and facial motion capture technology. Speaking about the group’s recent inspiration from Japanese culture, Luke Steele, who formed Empire of the Sun in 2008 with Nick Littlemore, recalled, “We discovered Japanese director Nobumichi Asai’s work through a short film he had created called Kagami and all of his famous face projection mapping works. The colors and shapes he creates are mind-bending. with a certain digital romance to it all. Our unwavering confidence in his ability had us reaching out to him to marry his imagination with our music.”
This is Empire of the Sun’s first release in nearly a year and the Australian supergroup is perhaps best known for their striking aesthetics and creative flair. This new chapter for the duo is yet another testament to their potent creative acumen considering the combined views of the band’s innovative videos now exceed 150 million, including more than 70 million for the global hit “Walking On A Dream.”
The festival will take place from September 16-18 at the Tokyo Odaiba ULTRA Park across three stage- Main Stage, Live Stage and RESISTANCE. Having announced an Ibiza residency recently, RESISTANCE will also see a major upgrade in Tokyo this year, with Carl Cox, Joseph Capriati, Sasha & John Digweed and Seth Troxler set to headline its stage.
View the full Phase 1 lineup below:
Watch the Ultra Japan official 2016 aftermovie below:
Empire of The Sun have perfected their craft of making irresistible indie pieces filled with expert synth work and adventurous songwriting, cementing them as a heavy favorite among those craving a more alternative form of electropop.
After three years of relative silence on their end, the pair began teasing news of their new album in 2015, finally giving away official information in August. Two Vines has now been unleashed, granting fans access to fifteen compositions that traverse various soundscapes all tying into an “urban jungle theme,” from the cheery title track, to more laid back pieces like “Way To Go.”
2016 has been an exceptional year for album releases. Since January, the dance music realm has been blessed with an eclectic array of thoughtful longform offerings. The chaos of Boys Noize’s Mayday, serenity of Flume’s Skin, and majesty of Eric Prydz’s Opusonly begin to broach the vibrant emotional spectrum of LPs that have provided the foundation for one of electronic music’s most illustrious years yet.
As we officially bid farewell to summer and plunge into autumn’s austerity, it’s important to note that there are still many extraordinary albums yet to be released this year. We’ve compiled five albums in particular that are worth getting excited for before January 1, 2017.
Words by Will McCarthy, Michael Sundius, Alexandra Blair, and Michael Cooper.
Mr. Oizo – All Wet
Mr. Oizo has yet to become a household name stateside, but the French artist is a pioneer across two disciplines. For the better part of the last 20 years, Mr. Oizo has established himself as a visionary in bizarre techno, while also succeeding as a surrealist filmmaker under his given name, Quentin Dupieux.
All Wet will mark Dupieux’s sixth LP as Mr. Oizo. Spanning 15 tracks in length, the album contains a plethora of high profile collaborations across a myriad of genres. Boys Noize, Siriusmo, and Crookers’ Phra all lend production talents to the record, while Peaches and Charli XCX are among its notable vocalists. Of course, the song most poised to convert American audiences to Oizo’s cult of peculiarity is his Skrillex collaboration; “End Of The World” has already begun to establish a massive presence in DJ sets and online. Luckily, the techno deluge of Mr. Oizo’s All Wet is imminent.
Release Date: September 30
Label: Ed Banger Records
Lido – Everything
With production credits for the likes of Halsey and Chance The Rapper, to say nothing of his extensive lineup of remixes — including an ambitious mix combing half of Kanye West’s The Life of Pablo — and flip work, Lido has proven himself to be one of the hottest names in electronic music. With a style that can effortlessly flip from heavily synthesized to R&B and gospel-inspired piano ballads, the hype has been building for his debut album Everything, due out in October.
Lucky fans who caught Lido’s set at Coachella have already heard the LP in full, though for now, the Norwegian has opted to tide fans over his first single “Crazy.” If the October 7 release date is still too far away, be sure to check out his amphibious, Jersey club side project Trippy Turtle.
Release Date: October 7
Empire of the Sun – Two Vines
Empire of the Sun have been making the most of the three year journey to their forthcoming LP, Two Vines. Known for their opulent aesthetics, the duo spent time recording in both Hawaii and Los Angeles, chasing a mirage that defined the album’s sound from the outset. Says band member Nick Littlemore: “there was an image we talked about very early on… a modern city overtaken by jungle, almost like mother nature taking back the planet.”
Drawing inspiration from the dreamy harmonies of ’70s prog pop, the duo recruited high profile collaborators like Fleetwood Mac’s Lindsey Buckingham and members of both Prince and David Bowie’s bands. The result, witnessed in lead singles “High and Low” and the titular “Two Vines,” is as luscious as anything we’ve seen yet from the psychedelic duo.
Release Date: October 28
Justice – Woman
There is likely no album this year we’re anticipating as heavily as that of Justice’s Woman. The legendary French pair’s impending third album has the entire dance world on the edge of their seat, and for good reason — the previous two LPs served to help alter the course of electronic music as we know it.
What’s more, if the first two singles, “Safe and Sound” and “Randy,” are any indication, then Gaspard Augé and Xavier de Rosnay appear to be in top form. Blending disco, electro, and techno with live orchestra accompaniment, a choir, and plenty of swoon-worthy vocalists, Woman will undoubtedly reignite the Justice fever when it drops in November.
Release Date: November 18
Label: Ed Banger Records
It’s been a quiet two years for Tycho since the release of Awake in 2014. That album cemented composer Scott Hansen’s status as a chill wave icon and the project has spent months touring the nation, bringing dreamy sunrise sets to the likes of EDC and Burning Man. In between shows, Hansen and his rotating cast of musicians have kept busy creating arrangements for a new album that will largely be a departure from previous work.
Hansen posted the project’s latest single “Epoch” on his graphic design blog, calling the track the “keystone” of the group’s evolving sound. The new release will “[hone] the sonic aesthetic of Dive while drawing on the kinetic energy of Awake,” and promises to explore “darker themes and new musical territory.” The singles pairs cold, buzzy synths and punishing drum lines with Hansen’s signature bright guitar licks for a spacious, melancholy effect. While Hansen has yet to announce an official release date, it is suspected that the release will come via Ghostly International sometime this year.
Release Date: TBA (2016)
Label: Ghostly International
Honorable Mention: deadmau5
Back in July, deadmau5 casually remarked that his new album was “pretty much” finished, immediately sending fans into a frenzy. While we’ve yet to receive an official release date from Zimmerman, we’ve heard countless snippets of the Canadian producer’s new work in the form of studio streams and live sets — including a new 9-minute progressive house piece and two tantalizing electro concoctions.
With no confirmation that the album will arrive this year, however, Zimmerman’s forthcoming eighth studio album remains an “Honorable Mention” on our list. It’s worth noting, however, that in a periscope stream last week, Zimmerman’s tour manager remarked that the album may be coming as soon as November.