Australia is facing the worst wildfires the continent has seen in decades after months of persistent heat and drought. The wildfires have claimed 24 lives and more than 2,000 homes, 6.3 million hectares of land across the bush, national parks, and forests, and more than 500 million animals.
It’s no secret that many of electronic music’s best and brightest hail from down under, though artists around the world are banding together to bring attention to the crisis and to encourage fans to donate to the ongoing efforts to calm the fires and help those devastated by the destruction. Aussie electronic figurehead Nina Las Vegas is donating the proceeds from her entire NLV Records catalog, Alison Wonderland is donating proceeds from her merch store all month long. Those who are able to donate can find different donation platforms and causes here.
Since 2005, Tomorrowland has been blazing a path for electronic music fans all over the world. This past October, the iconic festival celebrated its 15th anniversary year with a special performance at ADE.
This year’s highly anticipated edition of Ultra Europe will see the event brand’s return to Split, Croatia July 10-12. They’ve just unveiled the first arm of their 2020 artist ticket, and it’s clear UMF Europe means business.
Featuring some familiar faces from Ultra’s debut Abu Dhabi edition that was recently released, the genre-diverse roster includes DJ Snake, Afrojack, and Marshmello. Also present on the lineup is a rare, ultra-coveted sighting of the three original drum n bass dons of Pendulum. Plus everyone’s favorite cake boss, Dim Mak’s Steve Aoki. Ultra Europe’s commitment to consistently executing lineups full of chart-topping superstars is illustrated indisputably in its history, which includes additions like Hardwell, Above & Beyond, and Avicii, for starters. Knowing this, high hopes for the festival’s second wave are well warranted.
For tickets and the full phase 1 lineup head here.
Aoki attendees will have the opportunity to see one year fall into the next, under The Hakkasan Grid, the self-reported largest kinetic light art installation in the US. Confetti drops will add much-warranted zeal to the momentous drops that Aoki is all too liable to be dishing out that evening. Meanwhile, guests present at Harris’ OMNIA show will have access to the nightclub’s terrace, where they can view Las Vegas’ renowned New Year’s Eve fireworks display. Hip-hop enthusiasts who opt to bid 2019 adieu in the company of Tyga can expect confetti balloon drops and an exhilarating countdown to the year ahead.
Those who aim to ring in the New Year Las Vegas style can snag tickets to each of the three events, here.
Ultra Music‘s annual electronic highlight reel has arrived, and with it, the esteemed imprint succinctly underscores 15 standout records that contributed to dance music’s robust year of production. The diversely bodied Ultra 2020 spans genres, spotlighting records from an array of subgenres.
Ultra 2020 touts house heaters such as MK‘s inescapable “Body 2 Body” and DVBBS and Bridge’s “GOMF.” The compilation album also caters to those with tastes for harder, grittier technics with 4B and Flosstradamus‘ “Blackout” and NGHTMRE and A$AP Ferg‘s “Redlight.”
Between his producing hits with international acts and touring as one of EDM’s pioneering superstars, Steve Aoki has made it a continued point to prioritize charitable activities into his schedule. The Neon Future producer hosted the first ever Aoki Games in September and raised more than $250,000 for brain research. His latest endeavor saw him partnering with nonprofit Kids Wish Network to make a young fan’s dream come true.
With the foundation’s help, 6-year-old fan Jamar Woods a.k.a. DJ Masterpiece and his family received the chance to travel to Las Vegas and spend the day with Aoki at his “playhouse.” Jamar has aspired to be a DJ since he was two, but faced challenges upon being diagnosed with a life-threatening illness. Kids Wish Network helps grant wishes to children between the ages of three and 18 who battle life-threatening medical conditions.
During the ultimate playdate, Aoki and Jamar played piano together, signed each other’s custom shirts, and hung out in the ball pit—collectively sharing both a heartwarming and inspirational day that touched everyone.
“A very special thank you to Steve Aoki for graciously inviting us into your home, for your hospitality, and kindness in taking time out of your day to inspire Jamar,” said Kids Wish Network Executive Director, Tam Lai.
Each week, New Music Friday sweeps through with torrential force, showering streaming platforms with immeasurable amounts of new tunes. Just like Dancing Astronaut rounds up 25 of the biggest songs of the week for the Hot 25 Spotify playlist each New Music Friday, Lunar Lunes serves as a landing pad for SoundCloud users who want a whole new dose of tunes to kick off the work week.
Felix Cartal has released an impactful new video project in collaboration with Jacob Crawford titled “Right Now.” Within the visual, the Canadian DJ/producer tackles an issue that nearly all artists struggle with at some time or another, feeling stuck in a creative rut. To encourage his peers to prevail during creatively challenging times, Cartal took a trip to Los Angeles and recruited some industry friends for insight into what has helped them when they struggle with artistic vision.
The video opens to the text, “As an artist, I often feel insecure about my own work and look for ways to stay motivated. I love talking to friends in these moments… so I went to LA for one week, and asked some friends about their creative process. This is the result. Maybe it can help you too.”
The video shows clips of Cartal speaking with artists spanning Zedd to Anna Lunoe to Kaskade. He also speaks to songwriters Lights, K.Flay, Phoebe Ryan and many more. With such an expansive pool of participants, the visual is free to jaunt through a number of creative corridors. A number of notable artists, including Galantis and Steve Aoki, also opted to send in clips sharing the galvanizing message: “Don’t Wait, just do it right now.” The video itself concludes with Cartal sharing some reflective insight on his career thus far.
Cartal writes in an official release about his intentions for releasing the project, “I’ve always wanted to make a video to help inspire artists who are just getting started. Sometimes it feels like being stuck is something that only happens to you. It’s not true. Everyone feels that way sometimes. This video has been over a year in the making, and I’m so proud of it finally coming together. TO EVERY SINGLE ARTIST, CREATOR, OR HUMAN WHO’S EVER BEEN STUCK. THIS VIDEO IS FOR YOU!”
Steve Aoki and the Backstreet Boys ‘Let It Be Me’ was surprisingly and sinfully good, and Denis First’s bold remix may even top the guilty pleasure listenability of the original. The remix keeps the Boys vocals front and center and builds in a dreamy melody and undulating bass line, a blast from the past vibe for a blast from the past resurgence. It’s a modern dance flip on a modern dance hit that adds plenty more miles to the unlikely collaboration.