Madeon opens up about depression and announces new single, ‘Be Fine’

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Madeon opens up about depression and announces new single, ‘Be Fine’Madeon Photo Cred Diego Andrade

Madeon‘s highly anticipated return to dance music has been a gratifying journey to say the least. Ushering the Good Faith chapter of his musical career, the French synthpop producer released singles, “All My Friends” and “Dream Dream Dream” to positive reception from peers and fans alike while debuting his eponymous Beats 1 radio show. Now, after months of waiting, Madeon has delivered Good Faith in full spirits.

In a heartfelt letter to fans, Madeon opened up about his depression leading up to the completion of his forthcoming album, its impact on him after the debut of his Good Faith show at Lollapalooza, and his subsequent decision to put the album on hold. Citing the thematic elements of the album as his motivation for continuously working on his mental health, the “Shelter” producer thanked fans for their patience and empathy in the delay.

“That’s the intimate theme of this work to me: making sense of joy, making sense of darkness. Along the way, over more than three years, Good Faith has been the horizon, the reason I would fight over and over again to get healthy. I want this album, this tour and all that will come after it to paint for you the picture that’s been vividly in my mind all this time.”

Madeon also announced the newest single from Good Faith, “Be Fine” and its release date: Wednesday, Oct. 16. His Good Faith tour will commence later this month.

Photo Credit: Diego Andrade

Whethan and Flosstradamus announce indefinite hiatus from touring to focus on mental health

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Whethan and Flosstradamus announce indefinite hiatus from touring to focus on mental health16996062 1272821486134811 474695552378767754 N

Both Whethan and Flosstradamus have announced their respective breaks from performing shows for an indefinite period of time to focus on their mental health. Whethan was slated to play two dates for this year’s edition of Australian music festival Listen Out—Perth on Sept. 29 and Sydney on Oct. 5. The producer took to social media to apologize to fans for cancelling his appearances and to express his need to focus on both his mental and physical health, describing his state as “first time in awhile feeling this low.”

Flosstradamus delivered the news of his performing hiatus after his set at Lost Lands the weekend of Sept. 27-29. The HDYNATION boss played one of his heaviest sets in a long time at the bass festival before announcing on the mic his plans to take off from the touring scene for at least a year. According to Lost Lands attendees, Flosstradamus acknowledged that his Lost Lands set would be his last show for a while. So far, he has not yet made any statements on social media.

Although the news may come as unfortunate, fans and peers have come forward with support for both artists’ hiatuses in regards to their mental health. Since the untimely passing of superstar Avicii, there has been a growing emphasis on mental health within the dance music scene for artists to put themselves first including the creation of the Tim Bergling Foundation.

Avicii’s father speaks on his son’s mental health journey

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Avicii’s father speaks on his son’s mental health journeyAvicii1

Avicii‘s father Klas Bergling has opened up to CNN about his son’s mental health journey in the years leading to his untimely passing. When touching on the topic of his depression and ultimate suicide, he likened the chain of events to a “traffic jam,” rather than an extended plan. “Many things happened and came into the same station, so to say, and brought him out of his control,” Bergling explained.

He spoke about times when Avicii was younger, recalling times when he’d have “hard talks about getting out of bed.” The artist was a known introvert, and the demands of being a celebrity DJ began to chip at his well being to the point where too many things at once put him in an unstable place. Klas later mentioned the foundation he established in his son’s name to help other young people become self aware and comfortable enough to work on their internal battles early, “when the problems are still small.”

TIM, the posthumous album made in Avicii’s honor, was released in June.

H/T: Billboard

Photo credit: Sean Eriksson

Jackmaster follows up harassment scandal hiatus with statement on self-work and additional apology

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Jackmaster follows up harassment scandal hiatus with statement on self-work and additional apologyJackmaster Nicolas Schopfer Photography

Jackmaster, real name Jack Revill, found himself at the center of a scandal when, at a Bristol music festival, he allegedly harassed various staffers sexually and made lewd comments. The episode was exacerbated by the DJ’s inebriation at the time. Following the incident, Jackmaster issued both public and private apologies taking responsibility for his misconduct. A partial hiatus followed.

The producer has since surfaced publicly again to issue a second apology for the incident, while also updating followers on how he’s been working since then to better himself. In his statement on Facebook, he spoke about working through certain triggers in therapy, emphasized that substances are no excuse for his action, and also outlined his efforts in the self care and health department.

Revill also addressed his initial apology around the issue, which he noted was “ambiguous” and catalyzed “untrue rumors” around the events that took place that day.

Photo credit: Nicolas Schopfer Photography

Avicii’s father addresses IMS Ibiza on mental health and Tim Bergling Foundation initiatives alongside Pete Tong

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Avicii’s father addresses IMS Ibiza on mental health and Tim Bergling Foundation initiatives alongside Pete TongKlas Bergling IMS Ibiza

Avicii‘s father, Klas Bergling, spoke at IMS Ibiza yesterday (May 23). Bergling was interviewed by BBC Radio 1‘s Pete Tong about the importance of recognizing the early signs of deteriorating mental health and depression for artists and creatives working in the music industry and about different means of treatment. The conversation largely focused on the initiatives and mission of the newly formed Tim Bergling Foundation, which was created by the late Swedish superstar’s family in the wake of his untimely passing in April of 2018.

In the interview, Bergling dives into what he believes the contributing factors were in the deterioration of his son’s mental health, citing Avicii’s famously relentless touring itinerary, anxiety, depression, lack of sleep, and alcohol dependency. Bergling expressed concern for his son’s well being many times in the years leading up to his passing, though Bergling concedes that even with the full support of Avicii’s team, friends and family, and professional counsel, his attempts to intervene often fell short of making a real impact.

“It’s not many jobs that you can drink while you work, or you’re allowed to. If you start drinking at your job, your manager is supposed to take care of you quickly,” says Bergling. “Life as a DJ and travels where you don’t get any rest between, you travel a lot, you sleep less. The pressure is great depending on the individual, some people handle it perfectly, others don’t.”

The Tim Bergling Foundation was created earlier this year in memory of Avicii, intended to focus on causes near to the “Wake Me Up” star’s heart. Funded solely from the estate left by Avicii, the foundation seeks to educate people on the issues surrounding suicide and mental health, combating climate change, and protecting endangered species.

Getter releases statement, will continue making music for himself

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Getter releases statement, will continue making music for himselfGetter Visceral Mau5trap

In a statement on social media, Getter expressed his raw feelings about the recent negative fan reactions on his most recent Visceral tour, which he ended up canceling to step away from the intense negative backlash that included people throwing things at him on stage.  Fittingly during Mental Health Awareness month, the artist expressed his intense sensitivity to the work he puts out into the world and emotional weight of responding on social media. After stepping away from social media for a while, Getter says he feels a lot better.

With all of this said, Getter will hand his social media responsibilities to his management while focusing on making music for himself. His debut album, Visceral, was a step away from the party dubstep he initially made a name for himself with, focusing on hip-hop, rock, and electronic elements that culminated into an expression of his rawest moments and emotions.

Photo credit: Drew Ressler/Rukes

Elohim opens up about mental health on ‘Braindead’ EP [Interview]

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Elohim opens up about mental health on ‘Braindead’ EP [Interview]2019 BW 1 Tiziano Lugli E1557506429148

Los Angeles-based Elohim has released her new Braindead EP in celebration of Mental Health Awareness Month. The extended play delves into Elohim’s mental health obstacles, a centerpiece of her artistry dating back from “Xanax” in 2016 through “Hallucinating” in 2017 to “Panic Attacks” featuring Yoshi Flower in 2018. Braindead takes listeners on a roller coaster of emotions, through energetic panic, distraction, sedation, meditation, and brain fog. She ends the project with her version of Harvey Danger’s “Flagpole Sitta” featuring AWOLNATION, a song about society driving its members mad.

For the month of May, all proceeds from streams on the Braindead EP will go to a selection of charities focusing on providing outreach and support for those suffering from mental health issues. Elohim has also released a series of breathwork videos for each song on the EP as a form of guided meditation. She will also release a docu-series about the EP to be released in the coming month on her YouTube channel.

Elohim is Skrillex‘s muse these days, co-producing with the storied producer on her recent two singles, “Buckets” and “Connect” on the OWSLA imprint’s limited output. The rising producer also hit high marks on “Sleepy Eyes” with Whethan and “Love Is Alive” with Louis The Child. She will also hit the road on tour with Blackbear this month. Find tour dates here.

Can you tell us about your mental health obstacles and when you began realizing you had them?

I had my first memorable life-altering panic attack when I was 7 years old. It seemed to start there, and then everything changed. The following year, I couldn’t go to school without having a panic attack. I would be at the market, and if I was alone in the next aisle over from my mom, I would go into sheer and utter panic, which instantly made me think, “I’m going to throw up.” When I was a child, it was hard to control the physical nature of it, and I would often dry heave or throw up.

My parents never put me in therapy or identified it as anxiety or panic, so I was lost until I became old enough to understand. I was OK throughout high school and a couple years after, but as soon as I created Elohim and started performing, it kind of all came back to me full-force. I felt 7 again. I am not sure what exactly triggered it again and brought it all back, but I went through some incredibly difficult times.

What steps have you taken to alleviate your symptoms?

I began therapy, and that is helping tremendously. The idea was to work with my therapist (she specializes in trauma) through my issues without the use of medication. After consistently working with Susan for a year and a half, she suggested I see a psychiatrist and try full time medication, while continuing to see her. That is when my life clicked into gear and totally changed for the better.

I also started taking vitamins, developed healthier eating habits, and I try to stay consistent with physical activity.

What industry or life battles are you currently facing with respect to your mental health obstacles?

Everything has a way of being a trigger at times, but for me, it is important to recognize that and be smart about it. I have to tell myself it is OK to take the “me time” that I need.

What is something you’ve learned about mental health that you wish you knew earlier in your diagnosis?

I learned that it is OK to take monitored medication. I was so scared of any medication for years. I have become more self aware of what I am going through and have realized that hundreds of thousands of people also feel these feelings, which makes me feel a lot less isolated. Having that sense of community is remarkable.

What steps are you taking to raise awareness and build your community around a positive discussion about mental health?

The first steps I am taking are to start real and honest conversations. Every aspect of it: no frills, no sugar coating. We are ALL HUMAN! I don’t know where it comes from or why we are programmed to keep things a secret and inside. I want to tell my story so other people are brave enough to tell theirs. I want people to know that it is not something to be ashamed of, and it is OK to ask for help.

Why did you chose to cover Harvey Danger’s “Flagpole Sitta?”

I was driving one day, and I think KROQ in Los Angeles was doing a flash-back hour and they played it. I had the chorus in my head all day after hearing it, so I got home, sat down at the piano, and started learning it. I looked up the lyrics, and as I was singing it, in that moment, I was kind of floored with how relevant the lyrics were to my life right now. I had no idea they were speaking about mental health! It was serendipity at its finest.

How has your courage been lately?

I am feeling really good! I feel strong and ready to conquer all. I am consistently working with my therapist and being proactive about taking care of myself. It is important to take what you learn in therapy and incorporate it into your everyday life. Keep yourself on a schedule. Everything takes practice and work. I know that at any moment of any day, I could sink back down but I keep pushing forward and collecting tools to make that experience less traumatic for me.

Photo credit: Tiziano Lugli

Glastonbury announces plans for a Keith Flint tribute performance

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Glastonbury announces plans for a Keith Flint tribute performanceKeith Flint The Prodigy Credit Andrew Milligan

After Keith Flint‘s passing in March, The Prodigy announced that they would be cancelling all upcoming performances. However, their presence will not be completely missing from the festivalsphere this year, as Glastonbury has just announced plans for a ‘Keith Flint Appreciation Hour’ set.

Led by Prodigy guitarist Gizz Butt, who noted that “it’ll be a tribute to Keith, the family, the band and all the loyal fans. But also, it goes out to anyone who may be suffering the same feelings that Keith had – that led to his untimely death.” Featuring a first listen to an unreleased Prodigy remix from 1996, the set will stand as a major step in the grievance of Keith Flint and mental health awareness in the electronic music community.

Photo Credit: Andrew Milligan

Avicii’s father to address mental health at IMS Ibiza 2019

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Avicii’s father to address mental health at IMS Ibiza 2019Aviciidad

The International Music Summit events are among the most important events on the annual dance music circuit, largely thanks to top-notch programming. At this year’s IMS Ibiza event in May, Avicii‘s father, Klas Bergling will be a featured speaker, addressing mental health’s correlation with the music industry—an intersection Bergling is tragically all too familiar with.

Since his son’s passing last April at the age of 28, Bergling and the rest of Avicii’s family have dedicated themselves to honoring Avicii’s legacy, launching the Tim Bergling Foundation, which is focused on suicide prevention and raising awareness about the importance of mental health. This year, Bergling will speak at IMS about the mental health stigmas still plaguing the industry, and what the Foundation is doing to combat the growing issue. IMS Ibiza takes place May 22 – 24 at the Hard Rock Hotel in Ibiza, and a posthumous Avicii LP is set for delivery in June.

For more information about IMS Ibiza, click here.

Featured image: NME

Producer Sessions: 011 Adventure Club talks music production, mental health, new music and more on their Death or Glory Tour

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Producer Sessions: 011 Adventure Club talks music production, mental health, new music and more on their Death or Glory TourAC FEB2070

Producer Sessions is a series from Dancing Astronaut meant to shine a brighter light on the producer community. Each volume will guide producers toward professionals in their field.

Adventure Club is currently on their headlining Death or Glory Tour, bringing along a grip of heavy hitters such as Bear Grillz, Gammer, Riot Ten, ARMNHMR, Dirt Monkey, TYNAN, Wooli, William Black, Yakz, and more.

The Montreal duo consisting of Christian Srigley and Leighton James recently released a collaboration with Crankdat featuring Krewella, “Next Life.” Their last work with the Yousaf sisters was on their hit, “Rise and Fall,” back in 2012. Since then, both parties involved have grown quite a bit as musicians, and this evolution can clearly be heard on “Next Life.” We spoke with Srigley at Echostage in Washington DC about music production, among other facets of his work as a professional DJ and producer.

What made you finally collaborate with Krewella on your new song with Crankdat?

We toyed with ideas a couple times. With music, every song you write isn’t going to get released. You have to get a project that everyone jells with and we had five creative minds on this, and this is the one that stuck.

What is your production process like?

I’m the button pusher, Leighton is the idea man. We don’t use hard synths. I twist the nobs with my mouse.

What VSTs do you use?

A lot of times when I’m writing a new track, I’ll try to learn a new VST as I’m going through the track. You box yourself in a bit by continuing to use the same synth. Once I start feeling boxed in with a synth, I’ll move onto a new one.

You mentioned you liked our Flight Facilities – “Crave You” remix––that was Native Instrument’s Massive––and a similar patch was used for our Britney Spears “Till The World Ends” remix. That growl came from back when I was doing 20 hour bass builds because I was having so much fun with it. If I’m looking for a growl or specific synth sound for a song, I’ll go back to massive or whatever I’m looking for.

How do you normally start a song?

Typically, Leighton will find a melody on the guitar or piano. I’ll also cut some generic piano synthesizer and draw in chords. Here we’re listening for a cord line that really follows the vocals. Chords with the vocals really sets the tone. It’s the foundation and feel, then we add the details. Percussion comes in last for us.

Percussion is something I have to force myself to be more creative in. Drums are just less natural for me and more mathematical.

When doing a remix. We’re building the melodies around the vocals then add the drums last. I’ll try and reinvent the vocals as well.

Any plugins that you use in your signature melodic style?

Our most classic sound is our piano sound. I have a secret piano recipe that I use. Layers of it. I won’t give the secret sauce here tho.

What is your DAW?

Cakewalk. It’s pretty rare within the EDM industry. We use this plugin that’s native to Cakewalk, it’s called the Z3TA. They have really cool effects that we’ll put on vocals. Enigma by Waves is another with good features that we use for vocal treatment. Those are some old school plugins.

I’ve tried swapping over to Abelton. I was recording blues guitar when I was 11 years old in Cakewalk at my home studio, and whenever I tried crossing over to another DAW that might be more EDM friendly, it was like learning a new language. Cakewalk is my comfort zone.

It’s all about workflow. The faster I can get from point A to point B, the better.

What on the production side do you still struggle with?

I have trouble getting that super fat saw wave synth that really builds a whole room in all the right places and still leaves room for everything else. Even the spread as far as the chords go and how many synths are you going to layer into that. I don’t like using the same patch over and over, so I’m building up from scratch every time, and it’s always an uphill battle.

Can you talk about your collaboration process, on “Next Life?”

That was a stem swap, where we email stems back and forth without going to the studio. For some collaborations, we’ll go in the studio. For example, we with in the studio with Terravita when we made our collaboration, “Save Me” featuring Adara off our Red // Blue album.

Do you have any unique studio habits?

Guru energy drinks dials me in. I’m also a space bar squirrel. I’ll hammer the space bar, which is play and stop, and hit the same sound over and over again until Leighton has to run out of the room because he’s getting hit with the same sound over and over again. I’ll just be lost in thought hammering the space bar. Poor Leighton.

Do you have another vision for your live show?

Leighton and I have toyed with the idea of bringing live instrumentation to our sets. I grew up on blues guitar, so I would love to solo off all the songs in my set, but I don’t think that would necessarily hit. We have to find the right way to do it.

Singing is another aspect we’ve toyed with. One song that I’ve recently sang on is this song in the works about mental health. I’ve battled through depression and anxiety throughout parts of my career. It’s a song completely from the heart and vulnerable; I’ve never really spoken about it until now. I’ve found great guidance and growth, so I’d like to promote that side a bit and release this track about me opening up and advocating for mental health.

What’s it like being signed to a big label versus releasing independently?

The pros outweigh the cons. Just having those lines to release music from. Some of the cons are you can’t just finish a song and put it out. Sitting on projects I want to get out is a little tough.

Do you and Leighton make any weird ass music that you can’t release under the Adventure Club brand?

Absolutely, we’re constantly battling that. I think we’re on the luckier side because we have a nice spread where we can hit multiple genres. I know artists that are way more pigeonholed to a genre. Getter had a lot of trouble with that. From the industry standpoint, his album was phenomenal, but it just was expected with his fans and there was pushback there.

Have you ever wanted to create another pseudonym?

I’m a big gamer. It’s like World of Warcraft. We’ve been grinding for 10 years, we have all the top level gear, and every single step is so hard and involved now. I’d be fun to role a new character from the beginning.

What makes Canada such a powerhouse in electronic music production?

If you look 10 years ago, a lot of dubstep was coming out of Kelowna. It was a breeding pool for dubstep. Deadmau5 has been an influence for so many producer and you have to come back to Montreal to talk about A-Trak.

What is next for you guys?

“Next Life” with Crankdat featuring Krewella is the start of a big backlog of music. We’ve been sitting to long on some good stuff. Out next song is with Yuna who you might remember from our single “Gold” and a remix we did of her single “Lullabys.”

Do you do any extracurricular activities?

Magic the Gathering. In Seattle, we got to play with the people who worked at Magic alongside fans.