Armin van Buuren announces North American Balance Tour

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Armin van Buuren announces North American Balance TourArminvanBuuren MiamiDag4 BartHeemskerk 111 Socials

Armin van Buuren has announced the live accompaniment to Balance: a North American tour of the same name. The veteran electronic virtuoso will make his way through a number of major U.S. cities throughout January and February to celebrate the release of his seventh studio album with a series of exhilarating live sets. New York, Boston, Atlanta, and Dallas are among the 12 cities van Buuren has tapped for the Balance Tour to date.

Balance will land on Oct. 25. The LP is currently led by six singles, “Stickup,” “Waking Up With You,” “It Could Be,” “High On Your Love,” “Don’t Let Me Go,” and “All Comes Down.” Listeners can purchase tickets to the Balance Tour, here.

Balance Tour Dates

January 22, 2020 – Boston at House of
Blues

January 23, 2020 – New York at Great Hall
Avant Gardner

January 25, 2020 – Washington at
Echostage

January 26, 2020 – Raleigh at Ritz

January 28, 2020 – Atlanta at Tabernacle

January 29, 2020 – New Orleans at
Fillmore

January 31, 2020 – Dallas at South Side
Ballroom

February 1, 2020 – Minneapolis at The
Armory

February 5, 2020 – San Diego Soma

February 6, 2020 – Phoenix at Van Buren

February 7, 2020 – Los Angeles at
Palladium

February 8, 2020 – San Francisco at Bill Graham Civic Auditorium

Photo credit: Bart Heemskerk

Armin van Buuren launches ‘Balance’-themed escape room in Amsterdam ahead of album’s full release

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Armin van Buuren launches ‘Balance’-themed escape room in Amsterdam ahead of album’s full releaseArminvanBuuren MiamiDag4 BartHeemskerk 111 Socials

Armin van Buuren is set to release his first album since 2015 and seventh album overall titled Balance on Oct. 25. Ahead of the album’s full release and Amsterdam Dance Event, the producer is launching none other than a Balance-themed Escape Room to promote the album, as well as reveal the meaning behind the compilation.

Together with Armada Music and Sherlocked Mystery Experiences, fans will be able to participate in the experience with opportunities to not only unlock the hidden message of Balance, but also listen to songs from the album ahead of its full release. Posing as music journalists, they will need to gain access to a high-security vault complex in the heart of Amsterdam and solve numerous puzzles in order to discover what it takes to ensure success as an artist in the music industry today. 

Van Buuren speaks on the Escape Room in an official release, giving fans insight into what they can expect, as well as his hopes for the escape room.

“I’m a huge fan of escape rooms, so launching my own escape room in celebration of my new album Balance is something I’m very excited about. I can’t wait to hear what you guys think of the album and the game, and I hope you can fully lose yourselves in the story of Balance. And that you manage to get out unscathed of course!”

Balance Escape Room will run for two weeks only, starting on Wednesday, Oct. 16, the first day of ADE. Groups ranging from four to six people can play the escape room, and those looking to participate can book their spot here.

Photo credit: Bart Heemskerk

Armin van Buuren releases sunny fifth single, ‘Don’t Let Me Go,’ from forthcoming LP

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Armin van Buuren releases sunny fifth single, ‘Don’t Let Me Go,’ from forthcoming LPEDCLV2019 0520 003013 6856 MVA

Each Friday,  Armin van Buuren listeners have something to look forward to: a new single from the storied producer’s forthcoming seventh studio album, Balance. The successor to “Stickup,” “Waking Up With You,” “It Could Be,” and “High On Your Love,” “Don’t Let Me Go” taps into the progressive trance technics familiar to van Buuren’s sound and evidenced on prior high-powered releases like “Revolution” and “Blah Blah Blah.”

Outfitted with an agile beat that deftly pounds away as featured vocalist, Matluck, belts the song’s lyrics, “Don’t Let Me Go” jubilantly extends the sunny personality of the summer as it adds firepower to Balance. As for listeners, they’ll be wondering what will stylistically come next in the time leading up to Balance’s official arrival on October 25.

Armin van Buuren partners with Inner City for house-inflected ‘It Could Be’

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Armin van Buuren partners with Inner City for house-inflected ‘It Could Be’ArminvanBuuren MiamiDag4 BartHeemskerk 111 Socials

With the release of each successive single from his forthcoming studio album, it becomes increasingly clear that Balance isn’t just the title of Armin van Buuren‘s next LP—it’s also an eponymous description of the project’s design.

The first taste of Balance came in the form of “Stickup,” an anthemic trance track with crowd-electrifying potential, particularly in a main stage setting. A switch in sonic gears yielded Balance‘s second single, “Waking Up With You.” Sourcing its vocals from David Hodges, the successive single showed off van Buuren’s aptitude for radio-friendly, vocal-centric song construction. Its electronic-pop hybrid body stands in sharp contrast to “Stickup” and the newly surfaced “It Could Be.”

Proof of van Buuren’s affinity to seamlessly shift genres while keeping listeners on their toes, the third single from Balance sees van Buuren smoothly traverse house territory alongside Detroit production duo, Inner City. “It Could Be” further augments the anticipation that surrounds Balance, which will land on October 25.

“To work with Inner City is a dream come true for me,” van Buuren says. “They were already setting the tone in the dance music scene back when I was only just taking my first steps in the industry.”

Photo Credit: Bart Heemskerk

Armin van Buuren shares title and landing date for seventh LP

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Armin van Buuren shares title and landing date for seventh LPTomorrowland Armin Van Buuren 2018

2019 has been a year of tremendous activity from the Armin van Buuren camp. The trance titan recently interrupted the flow of his successive series of singles with the release of the inaugural GAIA album, Moons of Jupiter. Produced alongside fellow GAIA constituent, Benno de Goeij, the 21-song endeavor was a clear stylistic deviation from the commercial, dance-pop side of van Buuren. But the story doesn’t end there.

An extended effort, an album the length of Moons of Jupiter would reasonably give fans cause to believe that van Buuren’s next release couldn’t possibly come so soon after his last GAIA production, but suffice to say, more van Buuren music is indeed on the way.

The trance pioneer announced that he would be following Moons of Jupiter in LP format during his Main Stage set at Electric Zoo’s recently concluded 2019 iteration. And now, he’s solidified the impending album’s arrival day, landing October 25, and entitled, Balance. The endeavor, according to the man himself, will be an explorations of sorts, “into known and unknown territories while finding the balance in between.” Pre-order here.

Photo Credit: Marc van der Aa

Beyond The Booth 021: Hernan Cattaneo pays it forward

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Beyond The Booth 021: Hernan Cattaneo pays it forwardHernan Cattaneo Credit Esteban Salino Tarditti Photography

Beyond the Booth is a feature dedicated to the hidden side of artists that exists outside electronic music— a side rarely discussed with those outside their immediate circle. We venture “beyond the booth,” so to speak, and dive into their deepest passions that tie into their unique personalities. After some self-introspection, each participant then returns to the booth, providing an exclusive mix for the Dancing Astronaut audience.

Maintaining a fruitful career in the music industry is a feat only a small percentage achieve successfully, but Hernan Cattaneo has done so for three decades. Inspired by Chicago house and moved by the burgeoning club scene of his home scene in Argentina, the artist knew from a young age that his place in life was to guide a party into ecstasy. That he did, cutting his teeth in Buenos Aires and earning respect in the local circles before making it as a resident in the city’s Pacha night club. It wouldn’t be long before Paul Oakenfold had taken a liking to him and later began booking Hernan to tour internationally beside him.

Through his long years in the industry, Cattaneo has been a pioneer in progressive house, proliferating the sound all over the globe and helping to make South America perhaps the genre’s biggest home base. It makes sense as to why he’s become one of the rare DJs to reach a veritable level of celebrity in Argentina and beyond. What keeps him on top, of course, is his talent. Ever the connoisseur on a mission to unearth the world’s best music and better improve in the process, fans are assured a near-flawless performance with bespoke curation for each setting he plays in. This phenomenon remains preserved in his Resident radio show, and his prominent Sudbeat imprint.

More recently, the artist landed on Balance for a brand new Sunsetstrip compilation. It centers on the part of the day implied by its title, offering a sensuous, slow-burning journey through brand new music made for the golden hours. To mark this occasion, we nabbed Hernan for the latest Beyond The Booth.

The magnanimous selector dives into a love in his life as big as his music: community building. A family man himself with three daughters, he’s taken a particular interest in paying his success forward to children’s health and the environment. These longterm causes are key in ensuring a sustainable future and longevity for humanity, after all. Hernan expounds on charities he’s involved with, causes he supports, and more—capped off of course with a bit on his latest longplayer on Balance.

You’re known for having a large platform in your home of Argentina. Aside from charitable contributions, what other ways do you use your platform to promote your causes and bring good to the world?

I think because I’ve been DJing for many, many years I have a big following in my country and I’m kind of well-known in the scene around. So it’s good to use that popularity to other things like give more visibility to charity actions, new producers or any other thing that needs a push.

One of your most visible partnerships has been with the Asociación Civil Alegría Intensiva, which uses laughter and clown art for bringing joy to sick children. Can you talk about how your relation began with this brand and why laughter is such a crucial medicine?

I know them through my wife and always wanted to give a hand to the amazing work they do, but I was in doubt at first because for many years the electronic scene didn’t have a good name in the country and I was afraid I’d do more harm than good by putting an electronic DJ near their work. The media always used to associate this music with drugs and that was not the idea for a NGO for kids in hospitals.

Luckily in the past 2 years we’ve been working successfully on changing the way people see what we do. We did 4 huge symphonic concerts at our Opera House to present our music in a different way and they went incredibly great, so much that I’ve even been knighted for outstanding contribution to Argentina’s culture. Then, we all realized it was a good timing to go in full with Alegria Intensiva and show their work to all my followers. The project went amazing and they got a lot of support from my fanbase.

I’ve been with them at the waiting area in the hospitals and you see how instantly they transform the faces of those little kids—not to mention, being a father of three I feel that it could be me any day waiting for the doctor with any of my daughters.

How has being a father/family man impacted your own interests & what’s important to you outside of music?

Family is number one and it changes all, of course—the amount of infinite love fills your life like never before and make you happy at whole new levels. You have a different perspective of things and a new table of priorities that come along.

Having a wife & three daughters plus a full-on global dj career, plus a weekly podcast, label, and production work doesn’t allow me time to any other things. So outside that is friends, food, Netflix, watch football and do some yoga. But honestly, I never feel that I’m missing anything and every day I’m totally aware of the lucky man I am and would never complain about not being able to do other things.

Can you tell us a story about how you saw a direct positive impact from something you’ve been involved in outside music? Ie, making a child’s dream come true, helping provide education to others through school funding, etc?

Yes I always try to help…recently the Alegría Intensiva project was really important because now a lot of new people know about their wonderful work and may support including state government agents who also saw my Instagram and went to help them a lot.

Last year with Nick Warren we did a charity show in Macedonia and with all the moneys they build two kid parks at Orevche beach. I also go to artist schools to give talks about music & career and encourage young kids to follow their passion.

What do you do personally to reduce your carbon footprint, or offset the carbon cost of world touring?

I pay the optional fee on flights. I know it’s not enough but it’s something.

Have you ever thrown a benefit concert before? Tell us about it if so and what issue you were supporting

We did that with Nick Warren in Macedonia and we did a free symphonic concert in Buenos Aires for 40,000 people last year

We’re curious about your involvement with political issues as well —do you think as an artist with a large platform that it’s necessary to voice your political views and try to guide people in the right direction if it concerns topics like human rights, gender equality, etc? Or do you think this responsibility should be left only with public servants and that we should leave politics out of music?

I think it’s very personal and each one should decide. I openly support many causes in my country like legal abortion & women rights for example and some others prefer to keep them to myself.

Okay, we can now shift to some music questions. You’re up for the next Balance compilation instalment in Sunset Strip. Can you explain in your own words what this album means to you and how it came together?

I’ve been doing these late afternoon shows for years and really wanted to have an album about what’s going on at them we talked to Tom at balance and he liked the idea so I went to talk to my favorite producers and friends to work on exclusive stuff.

Sunset disc is slow and very mantric and strip disc is my night club side of things. It went to #1 on Beatport charts on the release week, so couldn’t be happier with the acceptance of this new project.

What is the key to mixing a perfect sunset set/mix?

Patience. Never hurry, sun goes down slow and so should be your mix. Hypnotic stuff works the best

Who are some producers on this album that you think are underrated and deserve more attention from the community?

Many of them should—Sentre, Subandrio, Navar, Mike, Kevin, … ALL of them! I hope this album will push them a bit to the recognition they deserve.

Can you speak to Balance’s importance as a hub for modern progressive house?

Balance been super consistent all over this years and build a great reputation about quality. Never followed trends but interesting stuff and that’s why they are so respected and trusted from that James Holden album to this date.

You’ve released several of these compilation albums in the past; have you ever thought about producing a full studio album of entirely your own tracks? Why or why not?

Yes, someday it will come but takes a lot of time and that’s something I don’t have at the moment.

What else is coming up for you for the rest of the year?

Touring the album with great gigs coming including some special ones. Burning Man, US & Canada dates, then Warung, Colombia, then Cordoba in october with Nick Warren will be massive (20000 tickets sold) then the two ADE shows , La Feria in Chile, Australia, Japan , Mexico and a few great things still cooking!

Photo credit: Esteban Salino Tarditti Photography

Premiere: Namito Feat. Manaa – Covert Affection

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Premiere: Namito Feat. Manaa – Covert Affection180919 NedaRajabi Namito Crop

In 2018, Namito practiced the art of Letting Go with his groundbreaking debut album—a 14-piece multimedia epic that traced his path as an Iranian refugee adjusting to his new home of Germany. Now, it’s time to dive deeper into his past with his sophomore LP offering. He lands on Balance for this tale, which deals with his coming of age in Iran, and we’ve been given a first glimpse into what to expect via “Covert Affection.”

The track, which features violin playing from Manaa, is a cerebral listen. It takes listeners deep into a melodic house soundscape, with progressions and instrumentation from his homeland abound. Manaa’s solo work adds a haunting touch to the track, while analog synths simulate the nostalgia of Namito’s younger days. The piece is a powerful look into what’s set to be another emotive and cohesive offering from the Berlin-based musician. Order a copy here.

Photo credit: Neda Rajabi

Stereo Underground evokes stoicism in debut LP, ‘The Art of Silence’

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Stereo Underground evokes stoicism in debut LP, ‘The Art of Silence’The Art Of Silence Artwork Cover

Stereo Underground, born Yariv Etzion, has always been somewhat of an enigmatic talent despite his far-reaching influence. A co-founder of Israel’s BPM College, now one of the country’s premier musical institutions, Etzion and echoes of his expertise are already present among the thousands of students he’s taught over the years. It wasn’t until 2009, however, that he began shining a light on his productions under his current alias.

Now, a decade-long track record of excellence in the house arena has led to the mysterious artist’s most expressive project to date: The Art of Silence. The album marks his first foray into longform composition, and unveils Etzion’s stoic pedagogy across its 11 tracks.

The Art of Silence lands on the distinguished Australian imprint, Balance, setting expectations high for the unencumbered debut. Stereo Underground demonstrates he’s here to rise to the challenge, offering up a spacey, cinematic record meant to be savored, to be paid attention to. Its haunting, ambient opener “Flying Glow” toys with empty space, as the title suggests. Sparse soundscapes are punctured by dissonant notes that hit the ears at different angles, making for quite a textured piece despite its minimalism. It catalyzes a deeply contemplative mindframe—a theme that persists through the considerable length of the album. The Art of Silence is certainly evocative of the lonesome, countryside setting within which it was written.

Etzion’s penchant for precise aural architecture enters as the album builds in intensity. No element feels jarring; emotions swirl. “Above the Sea of Fog,” for example, feels a bit wistful and nostalgic, perhaps bearing images of young love or carefree childhood reverie. According to Etzion himself, the track was inspired by a painting of a similar name, created at the height of the Romanticism movement. Its warm, analog synths and cinematic arrangement feel fitting in any case. “Echoes,” inspired by Pink Floyd, is psychedelic doused in subtle melancholy, illustrated through its minor key and undulating, legato notation. “Wanderlust” feels like an adventure, taking listeners on a 7-minute ride that emulates the excitement one gets when traveling to new places.

Ultimately, the album is an introspective, aural meditation. Stereo Underground takes his audience with him as he reflects on his own life and place in the world. In doing so, The Art of Silence urges his fans to do the same.

Order a copy of ‘The Art of Silence,’ out on Balance, here

Premiere: Brian Cid – Ascenso

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Premiere: Brian Cid – AscensoMeteorite Man Cover

A lifetime of musical evolution has led Brian Cid into the next milestone of his career: penning an album. Meteorite Man implies exploration, and it’s safe to say he’s traveled deep within himself and his influences to create an embodiment of his vision. Ten tracks work in tandem to create a sentimental adventure for the listener that charts a path through arpy melodies and lush percussion.

“Ascenso” is an adventure in itself; set at a higher pace and packing multiple chapters into its ten minute duration, Cid has created a meditative record that calls for closed eyes and carnal expression. It’s built in a way to make the listener feel like they’re sailing into the cosmos, with celestial soundscapes made out of stark orchestration and drawn-out synth notes that cut through its tribal drum patterns. It’s progressive at its finest, showing just how good of a fit Balance is as a label home for the LP as a whole.

Those curious to see Brian’s album translated to a club setting can see him in New York at this year’s Cityfox New Year’s gathering. He’ll be joined by the likes of Lee Burridge, Tale Of Us, Honey Dijon, and more to help ring in 2019. Get tickets now before it’s too late.

 

Pre-order a copy of ‘Meteorite Man,’ due on December 7, here 

Premiere: Clarian – Television Days (Guy J Remix)

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Clarian

Television Days already had a lot going for it prior to its release due to the fact that Balance signed it into its arsenal. The debut LP by Clarian explores soundscapes from the past and present, bound together in a cohesive aural tale that highlights the French-Canadian artist’s genre-defying tendencies.

Recently, the title single of Television Days was sent out into the electrosphere to be re-worked, with one of those chosen being the venerable Guy J. The progressive stalwart maintains the nostalgic synthwork and vocal edits of the original, but amps it up a but with driving percussion and a contemporary overlay. While Clarian has created a spot of sun in “Television Days,” Guy J takes it back to the shadows of the discotech.

 

 

“Television Days (Guy J Remix)” releases on April 20. Order a copy here