Swedish House Mafia has mastered the art of keeping fans on their toes, with plenty of teases long before material gains official release. Ultra Europe saw a continuation of this trend after the trio previewed a new rumored collaboration with A$AP Rocky. At its core, the track leans hip-hop, showcasing a new direction from the Mafia. The trio played the release for two minutes before dipping back into their canon of electronic hits.
Trending hashtag #JusticeforRocky took over the stage LEDs as the trio crowd-tested the new joint, which is rumored to be titled “Frankenstein.” A$AP has been incarcerated in Sweden following the rapper’s involvement in a physical altercation two weeks ago. It was after headlines broke about the rappers’ incarceration that Steve Angello and Sebastian Ingrosso started teasing the forthcoming collaboration via social media channels. A release date for “Frankenstein” is yet to be announced, but as Swedish House Mafia continues to tease new music during their live performances, fans can only hope that the music sees the light of day soon.
It’s a rare occurrence when Axwell presents original music, let alone an official remix but when those moments do arrive, they should not be taken for granted. While the Swedish House Mafia member has undoubtedly shifted his priorities towards the supergroup’s reunion efforts, he has still managed to find some alone time in the studio. For the first time since his notorious progressive rework of Hook N Sling’s “Tokyo By Night” in 2014 (excluding any “cuts” or “remodes”), the phrase “Axwell remix” has re-entered the conversation.
Earlier this year, Martin Solveig and Jax Jones announced the formation of new duo project, Europa, and debuted their inaugural joint single “All Day and All Night” alongside songstress Madison Beer. The Axtone boss has now delivered a spin capped by a heavier club essence than the original cut, as Axwell stretches his streak of more conventional house-leaning productions. With Swedish House Mafia slated to appear at Tinderbox Festival this weekend in Denmark, the remix would serve as a welcomed pivot from the trio’s setlist of classics.
As the return of Swedish House Mafia continues to dominate headlines, one member of the Scandinavian trio in particular is still hard at work on his own solo productions. Indeed, Axwell—real name Axel Christofer Hedfors — is back in the fold to prove he’s still firing on the release front, delivering his first cut of the year entitled, “Don’t Worry.”
This track arrives out on Axwell’s label, Axtone Records, in collaboration with Redfield, aka Neil Barrett. Being a seasoned producer with releases on Spinnin‘, Armada and Big Beat, Barrett is a welcome addition to the renowned label housing.
“Don’t Worry” continues the trend Hedfors has been following of late, regarding the sonically sophisticated sound his catalog has exuded in recent years. Rather than the sensational, tear-jerking EDM appeal of Swedish House Mafia, this track represents a talent for restraint. The bass line is tightly wound to the drums creating a comprehensive groove that supports warm synths and succinct vocals.
Over the past 20-plus years, Axwell has undoubtedly cemented himself among an exclusive group of the most highly respected talents in the studio. Aside from the Swede’s involvement as one third of Swedish House Mafia, Axwell has assembled an imposing discography with notoriously sanctioned releases like his remixes of “In My Mind” and “Tokyo By Night” as well as originals such as “Barricade.” Earlier this week, Axtone teased an impending announcement from the boss himself, which lead to widespread fan speculation as to what could unfold.
While fellow dance music icons such as deadmau5 and Armin van Buuren have previously offered production assistance in the form of a MasterClass, Axwell is taking it one step further with the reveal of his Axtone Academy. In the label’s announcement video, the producer details that it will serve as an immersive experience where aspiring producers will be taken through Axwell’s creative process in addition to general production and industry advice. Axtone Academy will include 80-plus workshops for students to choose from and will include lessons from other Axtone veterans such as Shapov and NEW_ID. A top percentage of the academy’s finest attendees will not only exit with the production expertise of Axwell, but with a forthcoming release deal on the label.
Those interested can get started with Axtone Academy here.
A-Trak takes on Axwell‘s wall-to-wall house heater, “Nobody Else,” in a brand new remix that expounds on the groove that Axwell laid down in his original offering. The old-school soul of “Nobody Else” gets an instrumental update in A-Trak’s version. The Fool’s Gold founder pads the track’s distinguishing vocal contribution with trumpet work that brightens the song’s deep house stylings.
A-Trak certainly adds his accessibly quixotic flair, quickening the pace of “Nobody Else,” as piano chords fluidly filter in, to add a multi-instrumental layer to A-Trak’s vision. Axwell captured the spirited mystique of a European nightclub in “Nobody Else,” a tightly constructed track that placed an emphasis on a funky vocal centerpiece, and a particularly cinematic build towards the tune’s end. But now, A-Trak affects an aural image of equal caliber on his rhythmic rework, marking another strong showing from the more-than-capable producer.
It’s most important day of the week: New Music Friday. With the overwhelming amount of tunes hitting the airwaves today, Dancing Astronaut has you covered with the latest edition of The Hot 25.
Diplo continues to flood the music world with new tunes of all genres—the latest of which is a sultry house collaboration with Tove Lo. A-Trak, too, has been releasing a slew of new tunes, including a groovy remix of Axwell‘s “Nobody Else.” Fans of the deepest depths of bass will rejoice at the release of i_o‘s Death by Techno EP on mau5trap, and Ephwurd and Shapes join forces on “Desires.” Flava D puts her own scintillating spin on Anna Lunoe‘s “303,” and TOKiMONSTA casts a soothing spell on “Dream Chorus.” Nitti Gritti and Gammer release their highly anticipated “Underdogs,” a day after the tune premiered on Dancing Astronaut, and The Him tap Maria Hazell for melodic masterpiece “Found Me.” The Midnight bring the early ’90s back with “America Online,” and Wolfgang Gartner kicks up the intensity on “28 Grams.” Sick Individuals‘ new tune, “We Got It,” leads perfectly into the weekend, and Sullivan King and Kai Wachi take no prisoners on the formidable “Between the Lines.” Dimension returns with another drum ‘n’ bass masterpiece in “Devotion,” and STANDERWICK combines elements of rock and trance in “Never Gonna Step Down.”
As each week brings a succession of new music from some of electronic music’s biggest artists, here’s a selection of tracks that shouldn’t be missed this NMF.
After months of speculation, Swedish House Mafia came out as the surprise closing headliners for the festival’s 2018 iteration, and the performance proved to be a worthy moment for not just fans of the group, but for the collective global dance music community. The set was full of the groups’ most beloved tracks as well as new IDs that have yet to be released in full. Relive the epic performance below as everyone prepares for Miami Music Week and the 2019 iteration of Ultra Music Festival.
Continuing the Swedish House Mafia slow drip, Ultra Korea just confirmed the trio’s headlining performance in Seoul, South Korea. The tweet and website update were synonymous to the Ultra Europe news the day prior, set to a hyped-up video of the trio’s Knife Party-assisted “Antidote.” With posters appearing in Seoul after the Ultra Europe announcement, the confirmation only guides beliefs to an Ultra Worldwide circuit comeback tour of epic proportions.
To officially mark the announcement, Ultra has released a new hype video confirming the Mafia’s return, set to the trio’s Knife Party-assisted “Antidote“—with the nostalgia turned up to 11. Though, there may be more to Swedish House Mafia‘s Ultra Europe headline. With Ultra Europe now confirmed and posters recently also appearing in Seoul, the possibility of a lineup-topping performance at Ultra’s South Korea stop could also be likely. But if that’s the case, two international Ultra appearances seems like it could stack up to something greater. In 2016, deadmau5 hit the road with Ultra to cover six stops on their Worldwide circuit, and perhaps Swedish House Mafia is preparing for a similar run.
Dancing Astronaut has reached out to Swedish House Mafia’s management concerning a possible Ultra Worldwide tour, though at the time of publishing has not received a statement back.This story will be updated as it develops.
The “Back to House” mix features 22 songs over the course of its brief five-minute span, kicking off with the V Classic House Edit of Glad Is The Night’s “Even Better.” From there, the Swedish producer mixes in everything from Rebuke‘s “The Pipe” to Dosem‘s “Unfolding” to Waze & Odessey’s “All Of Us.” Unreleased tunes include D.O.D‘s “According to Me,” which appears to be a forthcoming Axtone release, along with Eddie Thoneik’s “Fuego” and Chocolate Puma and Carta‘s “Zhong.” He wraps the mix with “Leave The World Behind,” which celebrates its 10th anniversary this spring.
The nearly two dozen songs are blended seamlessly to create a five-minute slice of heaven—one Axwell fans are bound to cherish for months to come.