2018 was projected to be a big year for What So Not with the anticipated arrival of his long-awaited full-length album debut. Now, as the ball gets rolling for the Aussie standout this year, What So Not is officially starting to deliver with the announcement of his upcoming Beautiful Things World Tour, slated to hit a handful of major international festivals as well as more than 30 stops around the globe.
The “Be Okay Again” producer is expected to hit Ultra, Bonnaroo and Lollapalooza‘s South American circuit, covering ground from Mumbai to Miami, Brooklyn to Berlin. The tour will include What So Not’s newly launched custom touring rig, featuring a massive chrome horse and chariot setup. The news of the Beautiful Things World Tour comes on the cusp of leaked, unconfirmed details about What So Not’s highly anticipated upcoming LP — rumored to be called Not All The Beautiful Things and said to include contributions from Skrillex, Rome Fortune, Toto, and more. Hopefully by the time What So Not hits the road later this month, we’ll know for sure.
Awakenings Festival has announced its glorious 2018 lineup, which will descend upon the grounds of Spaarnwoude on June 30 and July 1.
Over 100 artists will perform over the two days with some of techno’s heaviest acts fronting the bill. Artists like Carl Cox, Adam Beyer, Nina Kraviz, Sven Väth, and more, are some of the prime stalwarts on the bill. Awakenings will also see an equal dosage of techno’s ever-rising stalwarts like Job Jobse, Amelie Lens, Charlotte de Witte, and Dax J making their Awakening debuts.
Richie Hawtin will also be in attendance, bringing his special CLOSE concept to The Netherlands for the first time ever. Other notable acts include Marcel Dettmann, Joseph Capriati, Kölsch, Maceo Plex — who will be bringing his Mosaic concept to Awakenings for the first time ever — Ben Klock, Jamie Jones, Ricardo Villalobos, and Seth Troxler.
As expected, Awakenings Festival will be going above and beyond in their groundbreaking production. Attendees can expect top-of-the-line stage design, particularly in the open air areas of the festival.
Photo credit: Janet/madein1987
Bradley, California’s uniquely immersive festival, Lightning in a Bottle, has revealed the first phase of its 2018 musical line-up, set to take place May 23–28.
In an increasingly monotonous festival market, LiB defines itself in defying the norm. The festival’s forward-thinking curation has presently landed a diverse array of acts from Anderson.Paak & The Free Nationals, to Zhu, GriZ, Fever Ray, The Glitch Mob, Sofi Tukker, TOKiMONSTA, Modeselektor (DJ Set), Emancipator, Nicole Moudaber, The Black Madonna, and more.
Lightning in a Bottle’s strive for diversity in its programming can be best summed in music director and co-founder Jesse Flemming’s words:
“We’re definitely not trying to play the same game we are seeing with all the massive festivals these days when we book our music programming. Forget the big names you can see at 10 other festivals this year. For us the goal is to craft a musical playlist that will perfectly guide people along the experience we’re trying to create. We book each stage to be its own separate journey on any given day and we try to diversify it as much as possible so when you’re wandering around during the weekend you can always find something just right for you. This has been our goal since day one and it continues to shape how we book today.”
More information and tickets to Lightning in a Bottle, which go on-sale January 18 at 10 am PST, are available here.
Featured image by D Zetterstrom
There’s been no shortage of chatter over another possible Swedish House Mafia reunion since Ultra released their 2018 line-up last month. What a more opportune time after all than UMF’s upcoming twentieth anniversary edition, held in Miami’s Bayfront Park during March. In fact, if last year is any indication, it seems reunion rumors are becoming imminent during this time.
So why always with the hype?
When EDM pioneers Swedish House Mafia bid their final farewell at Ultra Miami 2013, the trio opened a speculative can of worms for when they might one day return to the stage. As festival season officially kicks off in March with Ultra at the helm, this year has reignited the SHM rumor mill. Indeed, there have been several happenings hinting at what would be a monumental reunion to be sure. The first and most obvious indication is the appearance of Axwell Λ Ingrosso on the 2018 bill, which naturally evoked fan chatter that Steve Angello would somehow jump out of a cake on stage. However outlandish and unlikely, the speculation comes alongside the fact that SHM recently wiped its Twitter account clean, spurring Billboard to stir rumors that a reunion was on the books for 2018, according to sources close to the publication. Additionally, Steve Angello began following Axwell and Sebastian Ingrosso separately on Twitter last month. But the most concrete evidence to a SHM return lays in a statement with Ultra CEO Russell Faibisch, who was recently named Magnetic Magazine‘s Industry Person of the Year. The honor came with an exclusive interview in which Faibisch spoke vaguely to this year’s special anniversary appearances,
“…something very big is in the works! Every year we pride ourselves on delivering for our fans special unannounced performances and surprises. But for the big 20th Anniversary, we knew we had to deliver something huge. Something unique that can only be seen at Ultra. It is completely under wraps. The only thing I can say is to Expect The Unexpected.”
So will a SHM reunion actually happen?
It’s possible, but highly unlikely. If these are in fact the only signs of a possible return, the responsible reaction to a reunion need be a highly skeptical one at best. There is also plenty of evidence to negate the trio’s return to the stage. First, Steve Angello won’t even be in the US during the time of Ultra 2018, which not only rules out chances of a SHM reunion, but any appearance during Miami Music Week at all. According to YourEDM, Angello confirmed to a fan in a DM that he is booked for gigs in Asia during the latter part of March. Second, when Billboard speculated a 2018 SHM return, the group’s longtime manager Amy Thomson categorically denied the news via Twitter. Third, while a possible SHM reunion seems inevitable, right now just isn’t the right time. While the group remain good friends, let us remember the trio originally disbanded five years ago because they felt what they were doing was artistically empty. As Angello told HuffPost,
“I think we felt like it had become a very big machine. I think the pressure … It just wasn’t having fun anymore. It was this humongous monster. We felt like tired.”
Thus, the possibility of an SHM reunion seems inevitable on the longer horizon. The moment can and will happen when Ingrosso, Angello, and Axwell collectively feel creatively compelled to create something substantively meaningful — sans any big anniversary line-ups, financial motivation, or commercial gain. As art should be.
So then, what’s the big surprise?
Several fan hypotheses have popped up on r/UMF over more practical predictions as to what we might expect from a twentieth anniversary line-up that says to “expect the unexpected.” First, there’s been speculation over long time friend Alesso joining Axwell and Ingrosso for some sort of SHM offshoot performance. Another possibility is the return of Avicii, as the star made his meteoric return to dance music just this past year. Additionally, Jack Ü is another likely performance to expect, since the duo comprised of Diplo and Skrillex made their debut at Ultra 2014. With Hardwell and Armin van Buuren’s huge b2b performance as Two Is One taking place at Amsterdam Music Festival 2017, hopes have also been high over a follow up performance among Ultra fans.
It’s difficult to determine the many possibilities Ultra has in store for 2018. While the evidence to a SHM reunion seems bleak in the eyes of some, yet hopeful in the eyes of others, we find that speculation leads to expectation, and expectation leads to disappointment. To let go of expectation is to be content with whatever outcome Ultra Music Festival has in store for their 20th anniversary festival.
Photo credit: Jordan Lloyd
When Gary Richards (aka Destructo), father of HARD Events, announced his plans to leave parent company Live Nation after 2017’s HARD Summer, ambiguity surfaced over the future of the festival, which was then celebrating its 10th anniversary. To make matters worse, HARD had been receiving hefty backlash over the controversial 2017 installment of its HARD Summer trailer, which for years has been a staple of the imprint, hosting Porter Robinson and Dillon Francis‘ announcement of the fictitious Spoon Ü.
Nonetheless, HARD Summer is set to move forward into 2018 without its divine leader, scheduled for Aug. 4-5. Unsurprisingly, as it has run through seven locations in its 10 years running, HARD has yet to report where exactly the festival will take place.
Among the many faces of the music industry, the beginning of 2018 has brought upon collaborations of all sorts. From the elusive b2b sets that Holy Ship attendees have been fortunate to witness, to the announcement of Diplo and Mark Ronson’s joint venture, Silk City, the year has started with a bang.
In that vein, one of the most highly anticipated events is primed to kick off the new year in New York. Working together with Egg London — one of London’s most reputable venues — Analog BKNY is set to host its 15th anniversary tour with Matador, DESNA and Espinal & Nova.
The 15 year celebration highlights the growth and success of the UK clubbing haven, bringing in coveted names such as Laurent Garnier, Lee Foss and Solomun, and marking itself as an international tastemaker in the nightlife industry. Home to an expertly designed sound-system and a ceiling adorned with flashing lights, Analog BKNY suits the ideal atmosphere for this techno-laden event.
Tickets are available online.
To kick off its fifth year of operation, Brooklyn’s Output is hosting a four-day celebration from January 25-28, which will welcome back familiar faces like that of Jamie Jones of Hot Creations, Seth Troxler, and Grammy-award winning local Louie Vega along with many more.
Since the venue’s birth in 2013, with its converted warehouse allure and world renowned sound system, it has gained international recognition, even securing the 2017 Electronic Music Award’s Club Of The Year. The event will host parties and performances in both its main space, as well as its more intimate, adjunct setup, the Panther Room.
More Event and Ticket information can be found on Output’s website.
Photo Credit: Behind The Scenes NYC
Illenium‘s breakout arguably career occurred when the Denver-based melodic producer was named winner of Kaskade‘s “Disarm You” remix competition. Fast forward three years, and Nick Miller continues to rise to domination on the festival circuit — most recently bringing his Awake Tour to Dallas’ Lights All Night and San Diego’s OMFG! New Year’s Eve Festival.
While in Southern California, Miller awed his NYE crowd as he unleashed quite the heavy-hitting surprise during his notable Kaskade remix. Armed with an ODESZA-influenced trap style drop, followed by 808 kicks in halftime, the live video edit (above) is being dubbed Illenium’s VIP remix. In so doing, Illenium further poises himself as an artist focused on taking a living approach to his live performance, all the while proving that he’s not just interested in pressing play, but pushing the boundaries of his sound and experimenting with evolving styles.