Win tickets to the official Cube v3 afters at Avant Gardner [Contest]

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Win tickets to the official Cube v3 afters at Avant Gardner [Contest]Deadmau5 Stoge

Following a consecutive four-night romp in Brooklyn for his Cube v3 tour, deadmau5 continues into the night under his less recognized moniker, TESTPILOT, with label friends in tow. Held at New York staple nightclub, Avant Gardner, the six-hour after-party slightly overlaps with the end of mau5’s third Cube show of the week, featuring a bevy of performances from mau5trap artists such as ATTLAS, BlackGummy, MSTRKRFT, Rinzen, Sian and Speaker Honey. The headlining slot is manned by none other than deadmau5′ techno alter-ego himself.

Using each of the venue’s three halls for this one-off event, attendees can also expect an appearance from special guest Layton Giordani, and sets from Seven 20 artists Todd Edwards, Jay Robinson and Goooey Vuitton.

Ahead of the event, Dancing Astronaut is giving away a pair of tickets to the Cube v3 Afters. Enter below for your chance to win.

Win tickets to the official Cube v3 afters at Avant Gardner [Contest]dft

Tickets are available for purchase online.

Deadmau5 preps four-night Cube run in Brooklyn

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Deadmau5 preps four-night Cube run in BrooklynDeadmau5 Cube

The mau5 is headed to the Big Apple. February will see deadmau5 put up a four-night run at Brooklyn’s Avant Gardner, and while the first three nights have been sold out, Sunday tickets are still available here. The four consecutive Cube v3 shows are set to take place from February 6 – 9.

This Brooklyn show circuit is part of deadmau5’s Cube v3 tour which the producer has been on since 2019 and will continue on through 2020. Fans can expect to see deadmau5 perform his recent Cube v3-inspired live tracks, which have been crafted specifically for the purpose of the live show. The mau5trap head honcho will also be opening a pop-up shop in conjunction with the upcoming batch of New York City shows. Stay tuned.

Deadmau5 preps four-night Cube run in BrooklynDeadmau5 Brooklyn Run

Testpilot, Dixon, Damian Lazarus, Peggy Gou featured on Coachella’s Yuma tent lineup

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Testpilot, Dixon, Damian Lazarus, Peggy Gou featured on Coachella’s Yuma tent lineupMovement 2017 Daily TrevorDernai 34

Coachella started 2020 on a high note with the delivery of the festival’s full lineup for the year. Rage Against The Machine, Travis Scott, and Frank Ocean assume headlining duties, backed by an exceptionally well-rounded billing of today’s top hip-hop, electronic, and indie acts. Now, the festival has shared its Yuma tent lineup, which features some of the most enticing dance acts of the year.

Holding down the Yuma tent this year will be deadmau5 performing under his Testpilot moniker, Dixon, ANNA, Peggy Gou, Fatboy Slim, Tiga, and more. While the more mainstream end of the electronic billing will land at Coachella’s famed Sahara tent, Yuma will cater to more underground tastes. From Luttrell to Damian Lazarus, Bedouin to the Martinez Brothers, Coachella’s Yuma tent gives an inside glimpse at this year’s programming breakdown, with more segmented stage lineups likely to follow soon.

Testpilot, Dixon, Damian Lazarus, Peggy Gou featured on Coachella’s Yuma tent lineupCoachella Yuma Tent Lineup 2020 Dancing Astro

Dancing Astronaut’s Top 100 Songs of the Decade

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Dancing Astronaut’s Top 100 Songs of the DecadeTracks Of The Decade

Words: Bella Bagshaw, Rachel Narozniak, Chris Stack, Jessica Mao, and Farrell Sweeney

From “Clarity” to “Bangarang,” the past ten years have borne witness to no shortage of colorful electronic releases that, cumulatively, have contributed to the genre’s expansion from niche to mainstream. A golden decade in dance, 2010 to 2020 saw electronic music hit a commercial climax in 2012.

As dance music worked its way across radio airwaves, most commonly through the recently popularized dance-pop hybrid format, and as the stock of electronically oriented festivals expanded, one thing became increasingly clear: dance music is for everyone. In a retrospective review of the releases that defined the span of time between 2010 and 2020, Dancing Astronaut proudly presents our top 100 tracks of the decade.

1 Scary Monsters and Nice Sprites – Skrillex

“Yes, OH MY GOD!” The premier single from Skrillex’s first Grammy Award-winning album for Best Dance/Electronica Album in 2011. Also grabbing a Grammy for Best Dance Recording, the track catapulted dubstep into the American dance scene.

2 Stay – Zedd

“Stay” arrived as evidence of the symbiotic quality of Zedd’s refined approach to both electronic and pop stylings. In partnering with then rising pop starlet, Alessia Cara, on the record Zedd affirmed what his followers had long known: the dance-pop hybrid is one of his strongest sonic suits—and he’s still here to play.

3 Body – Loud Luxury

The release that catapulted Loud Luxury into the musical mainstream, “Body” is an evergreen electronic anthem that exemplified the duo’s acute ear for effervescent productions.

4 Jackie Chan – Tiesto and Dzeko

Tiësto and Dzeko‘s collaboration with Post Malone and Preme, “Jackie Chan” proved itself to be a particularly pervasive summer anthem, as the star-studded hit single worked its way through playlists and radio queues alike. The cut, which scored a platinum certification, was as much a credit to Tiësto’s ear for electronic tunes that resonate — and have consistently resonated — with listeners as it is a watershed moment in Dzeko’s progressing career as a solo producer.

5 After Life – Tchami feat. Stacy Barthe

The undisputed father of future house, Tchami wielded this dancefloor weapon to open the floodgates, helping a whole new generation of four-by-four lovers discover the “hard” sector of house.

6 The Veldt – deadmau5

Inspired by a fan’s tweet and a Ray Bradbury tale of the same name “The Veldt” is deadmau5 at his progressive peak. The halcyon track paints a visceral lyrical and production portrait, scaling mythical proportions in electronic lovers’ hearts. It’s an untethered demonstration of deadmau5’s unique ability to create music that’s both gentle and galvanizing all at once.

7 Instant Crush – Daft Punk feat. Julian Casablancas

Introspection is one hell of a drug. Daft Punk knows this well, seen through their somber synth-pop moments. The androids borrow The Strokes lead singer Julian Casablancas’ palatably plaintive vocoded voice for a glorious game of sad robot.

8 Promises – NERO (Skrillex & Nero remix)

Appearing on NERO’s official debut album, the trio’s “Promises” remix helped catalyze the decade’s emotional dubstep craze. It even snagged Skrillex the 2013 Grammy for Best Remixed Recording.

9 Faded – ZHU

Remixed by everyone from ODESZA to Lido, “Faded” was a collective late-night mood for more or less the latter half of the decade. No one could deny ZHU’s beckoning vocal advances and up-to-no-good production prowess.

10 Internet Friends – Knife Party

“You blocked me on Facebook / And now you’re going to die.” At the height of Knife Party’s rage or die reign over the first half of the ’10s, came “Internet Friends.” It’s a cheeky, relentless emblem of the group’s electro house savored sonic flavor. Aside from making an appearance in live sets far and wide, it even made it onto The Walking Dead.

11 One Kiss – Calvin Harris

One kiss is all it takes? Over 900 million Spotify streams later, it seems listeners wanted more than that from the heavenly Dua Lipa-Calvin Harris tag team.

12 Raise Your Weapon – deadmau5

Written with Skrillex at his side, deadmau5 puts on a full-frontal display of his aural dexterity. Greta Svabo Bech helps wed progressive and dubstep in this hallowed union.

13 The Island -, Pt. 1 (Dawn) – Pendulum

Between its ample radio play and both Skrillex and The Godfather of EDM, Tiesto’s decisions to offer the track official remixes, “The Island” garnered the good graces it deserves. The flagship progressive paragon not only helped Pendulum flex their genre agility, but catapulted a teenage Madeon’s career, after the young Frenchman won Pendulum’s remix contest for the track.

14 Afterhours – TroyBoi feat. Diplo & Nina Sky

A pairing aligned in trap paradise, Diplo and TroyBoi, with the help of Nina Sky, bring sultry, up-to-no-good worldliness to “Afterhours.” The track pulsed with production ad libs evocative of their champion caliber of nuance across festival frontlines following its release in 2015.

15 Titanium – David Guetta feat. Sia

Close to a billion streams later, Sia’s steely vocals ring with the same prophetic cadence, as does Guetta’s slow-burning pluck. “Titanium” is one of the few preeminent paragons of dance pop in the US.

16 Express Yourself – Diplo feat. Nicky Da B

If we had to pinpoint a piece of music that catalyzed Diplo’s “random-white-dude-be-everywhere” reign over dance music and—who are we kidding—the industry at large, “Express Yourself” was that moment. It’s bombastic, deathly danceable, Afro-leaning style stood as a pristinely telling precursor for the near-decade of nonsense to brew from the Diplo camp. RIP Nicky Da B.

17 I Know The Truth – Pretty Lights

“I Know The Truth” is nothing short of an instrumental love letter to dubstep. Expertly placed, just ahead of its genre’s wall-to-wall embrace mid decade, the track displays Derek Vincent Smith’s unparalleled sample savvy, in this case O.V. Wright’s “A Fool Can’t See The Light.”

18 Tell Me – RL Grime & What So Not

A trap affront for the ages. “Tell Me” combines RL Grimes’ over-the-top orchestral energy and What So Not’s ethereal, trend-setting melodic flair.

19 I Can’t Stop – Flux Pavilion

Producers literally couldn’t (and still can’t) stop playing this larger-than-life track out. The proverbial dubstep onslaught became a quintessential live set closer soon after its release.

20 Marijuana – Chrome Sparks

“Marijuana” not only helped spark synth wizard Chrome Sparks’ career, but topped the ubiquitous “chill-out beats” playlists near and far.

21 Civilization – Justice

Picked up for multi-national ads with Adidas, “Civilization” is Justice at their best, full of funk, femme, and downright fun.

22 Say My Name – ODESZA feat. Zyra

An exemplar of ODESZA’s fluttery, technicolor sweetness, “Say My Name” helped pave the way for the ’10s’ chromatic chill-out niche.

23 Turn Down For What – DJ Snake

Soon to become a ubiquitous catchphrase and altogether ethos of the mid-decade, “Turn Down For What” is one of the most voraciously used movie score, TV commercial, and remix sources in the history of dance music.

24 Spaceman – Hardwell

Big room house most certainly had its day in the sun this decade. “Spaceman” is hands-down the sound’s token epochal track.

25 Harlem Shake – Baauer

One of those songs of which the legacy precedes exegesis of the song itself. The “Harlem Shake” isn’t a track; it’s a phenomenon.

26 Tidal Wave – Subfocus & Alpines

The decade’s proverbial melodic drum ‘n’ bass offering. Nearly a full ten years later, “Tidal Wave” still washes over like a welcomed rush of endorphins.

27 Gecko (Overdrive) – Oliver Heldens & Becky Hill

A watershed waypoint in the “future” house foray this past decade. A precocious young Oliver Heldens proves the clarity and ultra-modern precision of his vision with this one.

28 Rude Boy – Zeds Dead feat. Omar LinX

A bass line has never crunched harder than Zeds Dead’s “Rude Boy,” with lyrical hellfire to boot on behalf of serial ZD collaborator, Omar LinX. Islandy and merciless all at once, 2010’s “Rude Boy” splashed onto the decade’s dubstep scene sending heads rolling.

29 Innerbloom – RÜFÜS DU SOL

Idealistic, implacably danceable, a song for lovers to its core, to “Innerbloom” we surrendered. We’re all for cheesy saccharine-sweet house tracks, but this just isn’t one of them. Melt into the chromatic complexities of “Innerbloom”‘s swimming corridors of color.

30 Roses – The Chainsmokers feat. ROZES

An effervescent dance pop presentation like no other this decade, “Roses” was instrumental in taking The Chainsmokers from niche to nationally recognized.

31 Midnight Hour – Boys Noize & Skrillex

No, not a Dog Blood number. But “Midnight Hour” bangs with the same flare and dexterous finger on the pulse of the modern electronic heartbeat. A notable cobblestone on the duo’s prolific partnership path.

32 Pop Culture – Madeon

What would this list be without dance music’s token mashup? An overnight YouTube sensation “Pop Culture” shot Madeon into the stratosphere.

33 It Ain’t Me – Kygo feat. Selena Gomez

Kygo’s one-size-fits-all appeal is supremely evident in the sweeping success of the Selena Gomez-assisted “It Ain’t Me.” This track saw cross-continental top-five chartings from Australia, to Canada, to Belgium. The tropical house/dance-pop phenom continues to prove why he’s sought out with nearly unprecedented fervency from all-star vocalists.

34 Cheerleader – OMI (Felix Jaehn remix)

On the precipice of the tropical house explosion “Cheerleader” was a wholesome, silver-tongued spoonful of dance music for the unenlightened. Infectious and saccharine as a sweet tooth, Felix Jaehn gave “Cheerleader” the feel-good flip we could all get behind.

35 More Than You Know – Axwell Λ Ingrosso

Fans crawled and clawed for this one after tasting it at Coachella in 2015, waiting another two years for an official release. “More Than You Know” are the Swedish boys at their best, pure festival euphoria bottled in a song.

36 Viol – Gesaffelstein

Nasty, writhing, deliciously unsettling, it must be Gesaffelstein. “Viol” is a slow-crawling, torrential techno endeavor that will send the unprepared spiraling into the darkest corners of the electronic continuum, if they’re not careful.

37 Closer – The Chainsmokers

A driving force of the dance-pop hybrid’s pop cultural pervasion, “Closer” exerted a white knuckle grip on the charts, spending one year in the US Top 40 and 61 weeks in Billboard’s Top 10.

38 Where Are Ü Now – Jack Ü

Defined by its inescapability, “Where Are Ü Now” secured triple platinum status in addition to Grammy Awards and AMAs for both Skrillex and Diplo, while simultaneously ushering Justin Bieber back into the sonic spotlight.

39 Turn Up The Speakers – Afrojack and Martin Garrix

On “Turn Up The Speakers,” Afrojack and Martin Garrix collaboratively revive the heart pumping, adrenaline spiking glory of electronic festival sets, to take attendees and the genre alike back to its buzzing roots. To say that the 2014 cut has aged well would be an understatement; “Turn Up The Speakers” remains a prominent inclusion of electronic circuit sets.

40 One (Your Name) – Swedish House Mafia feat. Pharrell Williams

Axwell, Ingrosso, and Angello made their auspicious debut under moniker Swedish House Mafia in 2010 with single “One.” Their entrance into the electronic music scene with “One” was a force that would set the tone for the group’s career. “One,” also written by Pharrell Williams, was one of the music industry heavyweights’ first forrays into electronic music writing and co-production. “One” is a track that has become a pillar of Swedish House Mafia’s discography and is still performed to this day thanks to the timelessness of the upbeat production elements. The single won Best Electro/Tech House Track and Best Progressive Track at the International Dance Music Awards in 2011. 

41 Get Lucky – Daft Punk ft. Pharrell Williams and Nile Rodgers

Daft Punk basically brought back disco with this single. Enlisting an all-out all-star collaborative team behind the release, Pharrell Williams and Nile Rodgers, “Get Lucky,” half a billion streams later, did just that.

42 Levels – Avicii 

If there’s one song that arguably kickstarted the commercialization and mainstream crossover of electronic music, it is “Levels” by Avicii. The larger-than-life progressive tune single-handedly took over every festival mainstage, radio station, becoming the backdrop to movie scenes, sports networks and more.

43 Animals – Martin Garrix 

“Animals” was the first global hit produced by the then 17-year-old prodigious producer, Martin Garrix. “Animals” is definitive thanks to the fact that it took over mainstages across worldwide, and vamped Garrix’s career on a global level. No mainstage set was complete without dropping this track at the height of its success.

44 We Found Love – Calvin Harris feat. Rihanna

Calvin Harris led the way for major pop music collaborations with electronic music artists when he enlisted Rihanna for “We Found Love.” Despite having only released electronic leaning music, Calvin Harris was an opening act on the pop queen’s Loud Tour, and this crossover helped to cement the fact that electronic music and pop music not only could coexist, but that electronic music could truly appeal to the mainstream. “We Found Love” was the first of many collaborations between Harris and Rihanna, including “Where Have You Been” in addition to “This Is What You Came For.” Calvin Harris can also credit his lone Grammy award to “We Found Love,” which won the Best Short Form Music Video category during the 2012 Grammy Awards.

45 Losing It – Fisher

Fisher reignited a global addiction to a song with his release “Losing It,” which also arguably put the producer on the map for the long haul. Chris Lake co-produced the single, as if that isn’t insurance enough for a hit. But “Losing It” is also impactful because it helped to reignite the electronic music community’s love of house music. Gimmicky, sure, but intoxicatingly fun.

46 Lean On – DJ Snake and Major Lazer

DJ Snake and Major Lazer brought Carribean sounds to the forefront of dance music after releasing “Lean On,” which went on to become a worldwide phenomenon. The single inspired many other artists to tap into Carribean and reggae influences for feel-good summer releases. The track even became one of the top 10 most streamed videos on YouTube after it amassed two billion views on the platform in 2017. 

47 Shelter – Madeon and Porter Robinson

Porter Robinson and Madeon teamed up in 2016 to produce “Shelter,” and the collaborative effort was truly a noteworthy one. Their distinctive qualities combined to yield a french electro and Japanese-inspired single that was quite different from the vanguard of the time. “Shelter” has withstood the test of time as a fan-favorite of both its creators.

48 Don’t You Worry Child – Swedish House Mafia

One of Swedish House Mafia’s most alluring ballads and well-known works is “Don’t You Worry Child.” It came out at a pivotal point during Swedish House Mafia’s ascension into progressive house royalty. The single cemented them as truly influential for the genre, and it remains one of their most streamed works to date. 

49 Latch – Disclosure feat. Sam Smith

Both Disclosure and Sam Smith reign as leading artists of their respective genres, but each of their ascensions was aided by “Latch.” The fluid exposition of Smith’s vocal chops and Disclosure’s production landed on Disclosure’s debut album, Settle, released in 2013.

50 This Is What It Feels Like – Armin van Buuren

Trance titan Armin van Buuren pioneered the underground subgenre, achieving notoriety for his trance anthems, but van Buuren’s breakthrough into more mainstream dance music was aided by this aching number.

51 Feel So Close – Calvin Harris

The second single released from Calvin Harris’ gilded third studio album, 2012’s 18 Months, “Feel So Close” saw Harris transcend his disc-jockey talents to lend his vocals to this leading cut. The success of Harris’ extension, from producer to vocalist, was evidenced in the track’s alluring catchiness, and ultimately, its inescapability. 

52 Runaway (U & I) – Galantis

“Runaway (U & I)” laid the sonic groundwork for Galantis’ penetration of the electronic genre, and pending the single’s release, the production pair swiftly attracted and held the public’s attention as they went on to further define the style. Streamers got a first glimpse of Galantis’ dance aesthetic on “Runaway (U & I),” and in the time since, Galantis have animatedly labored to sharpen it.

53 Sweet Memories – Kaskade & CID

The rushing, mid-tempo bliss of Kaskade’s “Sweet Memories” is nearly unparalleled in its ability to please all in the crowd at the afters. The energetic number eases streamers from the weekend adrenaline spike to the gossamer glide back down to repose with a muted brilliance that only Kaskade could effect.

54 Language – Porter Robinson

The seminal Porter track “Language” marked a pivotal point in not only the producer’s evolution as an artist, but also the dance scene’s welcoming of melodically-inspired electro house— Peaking at #1 on the UK Indie charts and #7 on the US Billboard Dance Airplay charts, “Language” cemented Porter as a household name and served as a precursor for his creative direction in Worlds.

55 Clarity – Zedd feat. Foxes

To this day, “Clarity” stands irrevocably as a Zedd masterpiece that has held its own amongst the exponential growth of the dance scene. Smashing the charts, the Triple-platinum record was Zedd’s first Grammy and broke through to mainstream airplay—introducing the producer’s pop-influenced electro house and marking another wave of dance music domination.

56 Opus – Eric Prydz

The final offering from Eric Prydz’s debut artist album Opus, titular track “Opus” and its deliberate 9-minute intricacies have perhaps seen itself as one of the most grandiose and gratuitous unfoldings of progressive house in the sense of both a standalone track and its context as the capstone of a concept album. Melding cerebral textures and masterful layers, “Opus”‘s climactic progression is an ode to the Swedish producer’s legendary craft and continues to be a pillar of his EPIC sets.

57 You & Me – Disclosure (Flume remix)

The iconic Flume remix of Disclosure’s “You & Me” shot the Aussie producer’s pioneering future bass sound into the hallmark of fame and opened the gateway for the subgenre’s subsequent popularization. Enveloped by euphoric strings and brimming oscillations, the remix’s momentous drop has been celebrated time and time again.

58 Gold – Adventure Club Feat. Yuna

The second meeting of Adventure Club and vocalist Yuna brought about the Canadian dubstep duo’s iconic Calling All Heroes track, “Gold”. Arriving in the midst of the golden era of melodic dubstep, “Gold” exemplified Adventure Club’s command of emotive dance music and female vocals in its prime.

59 Calling (Lose My Mind) – Sebastian Ingrosso & Alesso

Undeniably one of the most popular EDM tracks of all time, “Calling (Lose My Mind)” joins the forces of powerhouse Sebastian Ingrosso and Alesso with OneRepublic’s Ryan Tedder in the culmination of euphoric-inducing progressive house. With songwriting support from Matthew Koma, the chart-topping track, its instantly recognizable top line and sing-along characteristics have established the collaboration as a timeless festival anthem.

60 It’s Strange – Louis the Child Feat. K.Flay

Upon the release of their K.Flay track, “It’s Strange”, it wouldn’t take long before then-newcomers Louis the Child broke onto the electronic scene. While the age of future bass had dawned, the Chicago outfit innovated on the popular sub-genre—constructing subaqueous-like synths over K.Flay’s spoken rap fusion to deliver a tastefully eccentric concoction of future bass, pop and trap.

61 Room for Happiness – Kaskade Feat. Skylar Grey

Hailing from Kaskade’s iconic 2011 album Fire & Ice, “Room for Happiness” lives among several other companion singles including “Eyes”, “Turn It Down”, and “Lick It”, as a nuanced showcase of Kaskade’s discography. The track saw the superstar coalesce with pop singer Skylar Grey on a melancholically hopeful track with house progressions equal parts gut-wrenching and suited for the dance floor.

62 Sweet Nothing – Calvin Harris Feat. Florence Welch

Topping the UK and Ireland charts and nominated for a Grammy, “Sweet Nothing” made up of one of nine top ten singles from Calvin Harris’ 18 Months and marked his first UK No.1 from the album. A distinct departure from his previous stylings, “Sweet Nothing” simultaneously rocketed Harris as an electro house aficionado with a penchant for radio appeal and showcased Florence Welch dynamism—its firing synths, club-driven BPM, and embrace of Welch’s powerful vocals as the foundation for a smash hit.

63 Bunnydance – Oliver Heldens

Ushering in his groove-tinged house productions, Oliver Heldens and his delivery of “Bunnydance” put footwork first, beat-wise and quite literally, on stage. Both quirky and channeling mass appeal, “Bunnydance” built the Heldens brand in his dance antics during sets and established him as a future house frontrunner.

64 HyperParadise – Hermitude (Flume remix)

Yet another ode to Flume’s range as a producer, his remix of Hermitude’s “HyperParadise” resides as his self-titled debut album’s embodiment of the Grammy-winning act’s investigation into trip hop-influenced future bass. Infused with heavy vocal chops and funkadelic rhythms, the 2012 remix timelessly depicts Flume’s inclination as an experimental innovator then, and now.

65 5 HoursDeorro

Perhaps Deorro’s most preeminent track, “5 Hours” crushed the charts, receiving two gold certifications, and received widespread success across the industry with appearances in several dance compilations during 2014. An electrifying hook encased by a four-on-the-floor structure, “5 Hours” breathes as an addictive track on all occasions, from the dance floor to late night drives.

66 Tremor Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike, Martin Garrix

Good or bad, the argument for “Tremor” as one of the most iconic dance tracks of the last decade is difficult to refute. Its 2014 release brought about the commercialization of the next generation’s big room house and resonated with festival crowds worldwide—crowned as one of the quintessential anthems among staples like “Seven Nation Army” and “Kernkraft 400”. Characterized by archetypal drops and crowd-pleasing energy, “Tremor” paved for success for main stage sound, undeniably influencing the future direction of both EDM and festival appeal.

67 Ten Feet Tall – Afrojack

Afrojack’s cross-genre hit “Ten Feet Tall” became an international sensation upon its release in 2014. With inspiriting chord progressions and rousing vocals from Wrabel, “Ten Feet Tall” and its emotional dance-pop connected with listeners through the track’s uplifting foundations.

68 Acrylics – TNGHT (RL Grime Edit)

When two bass superforces collide, RL Grime’s “Acrylics” Edit happens. Revamping the heavy duty TNGHT single, RL Grime’s edit ups the ante on the original gargantuan destructive soundscape—doubling the chaotic trap expression and championing an evil acidity exclusive to the bass legend’s realm.

69 Firestone – Kygo Feat. Conrad Sewell

The seminal Kygo track “Firestone” established the Norwegian producer as the tropical house’s lead innovator while simultaneously breaching international territory with No. 1 positions in several countries. In line with his major key stylings, “Firestone” distinguished itself from its dance counterparts of big room and festival-oriented peers with its heartfelt vocals and soft aesthetics.

70 Sexual Healing – Marvin Gaye (Kygo remix)

Preceding his attention-garnering Ed Sheeran’s “I See Fire” remix and subsequent breakthrough with “Firestone”, Kygo’s 2013 “Sexual Healing” remix stole the spotlight with its infectious, sensual undertones and served as the platform for his continued execution of tranquil dance beats.

71 Fantasy Alina Baraz & Galimatias

If sound were a remedy, “Fantasy” would be the cure. The then-20 year old Alina Baraz joined with electronic producer Galimatias in delivering a fantastically-sensual track reminiscent of the directions of ambient electronic music blooming in SoundCloud spaces. Its dreamy fusion of lush sonics set the precedent for more downtempo, synth-kissed acts to perforate the scene.

72 Lights – Ellie Goulding (Bassnectar Remix)

Bassnectar rarely crosses over into the pop realm; however, the underground bass king made an exception for Ellie Goulding, and the result was resounding radio success. 

73 All is Fair in Love and Brostep – Skrillex

The Recess track “All Is Fair in Love and Brostep” garnered attention not just for its impeccable dubstep sound design, but also for its uncanny resemblance to Zomboy’s “Terror Squad” — ultimately, bringing about a speculative war regarding who-copied-who that ended with “love and brostep” in which Zomboy revealed “Terror Squad” was unwittingly inspired by Skrillex’s This Much Power DJ Tool.

74 Boneless – Steve Aoki

2013 “Boneless” amassed widespread success across Europe and the broader dance scene as a club banger—adding to Steve Aoki’s portfolio of party smashers and forecasting Chris Lake’s rise as one of the house music’s most coveted. Boasting a minimalist electro structure easy enough to mix into any dance set or simple enough to layer hip-hop verses over, “Boneless” and its signature beat have continued to be recognized over the last decade.

75 Need Your Heart – Adventure Club Feat. Kai

Adventure Club’s “Need Your Heart” enlisted Kai for a forceful display of melodic dubstep that showed the duo’s intuitive craft for balancing heavy wobbles with euphoric vocals. Complete with a tasteful build-up and scintillating bass, “Need Your Heart” sits comfortably in Adventure Club’s arsenal of potent, yet artful dubstep tracks.

76 Everyday – Rusko (Netsky remix)

One of the most sweeping drum ‘n’ bass/drumstep tracks to ever touch down in the states, Netsky’s “Everyday” remix is a fearless explosion of ad libs and production nuance evocative of Netsky’s production caliber.

77 Spectrum – Zedd

In the span of an artist’s career, there are few songs that subsist as the apex of their artistry. Alongside its sister single “Clarity”, “Spectrum” endures as one of ZEDD’s legendary productions. The Matthew Koma collaboration topped three charts including Billboard’s US Dance Club Songs and enforced Clarity as a holistic body of work in itself. Fine-tuned with complexities of layers and emotional lyricism, “Spectrum” speaks to ZEDD’s capabilities as not just an electronic artist, but an artist built from traditional musical foundations.

78 FadedAlan Walker

Clocking in 2.6 billion views on Youtube and over 1 billion Spotify streams, “Faded” saw massive worldwide success upon its release and charmed both dance and non-dance fans with its instrumental beauty and brand of anonymity.

79 Gold Dust – DJ Fresh (Flux Pavilion remix)

Dubstep came from the UK, and Flux Pavillion was known to influence the likes of Skrillex with his remix of DJ Fresh’s “Gold Dust” and the likes. 

80 Alive – Krewella

When the group was a trio with producer Kris “Rain Man” Trindl behind the beats, “Alive” charting at 32 on the US Billboard Hot 100. The song was Krewella’s first and only top 40 hit on Billboard.

81 Cinema – Benny Benassi (Skrillex remix)

The hard hitting remix was a seminal weapon in Skrillex’s liver performance arsenal for years, and won a Grammy for Best Remixes Recording, Non-Classical. 

82 Bird Machine – DJ Snake and Alesia

At the precipice of EDM Trap, “Bird Machine,” was simultaneously silly and hyphy, and a festival pleaser as one of the first officially released tracks from the mega-superstar, DJ Snake.  

83 I Could Be The One – Avicii & Nicky Romero

The first Avicii producer collaboration that really took off with its unforgettable melody.  Released after “Levels,” the track fast-tracked Avicii’s upward propulsion to stardom.  

84 Bass Head – Bassnectar

Bassnectar fans are some of the most, maybe THE most, devoted fans in the history of dance music. This is their theme song.  

85 I Can See It In Your Face – Pretty Lights

Pretty lights continued his upward, live-performance trajectory towards the turn of the decade, and “I Can See It In Your Face” was a mainstay in the electro-funk magnates sets. 

86 Light – San Holo

“Light” is San Holo’s certified gold, future bass offering that bolstered the experimental melody writer to new heights.

87 Thief – Ookay

2016’s sing-a-long anthem was brought to us by the lovable and jovial, Ookay, with his sax-lead, future bass crossover, “Theif.”

88 EdgeREZZ

After Skrillex’s dubstep ran its course, a new kind of bass music began to emerge in the low-end populous. REZZ surfaced from the mau5trap depths with the piercingly scintillating “Edge,” launching her to headline for the new era of bass heads.  

89 Eyes – Kaskade Feat. Mindy Gledhill

Kaskade’s first Grammy nomination came by way of Fire & Ice, for best Dance/Electronic Album in 2013. “Eyes” was the lead single off the project and a closing song for that epoc of the melodic house guru.

90 Higher Ground – TNGHT

As hip-hop crossed over to EDM for the electronic trap wave, Lunice and Hudson Mowhawk’s “Higher Ground” was at the forefront, helping the duo earn stellar production credits with Kanye West and the like. 

91 Never Be Like You – Flume Feat. Kai

Off Flume’s first Grammy winning Skin album, “Never Be Like You,” was the premire song off the project and received a Grammy nod for Best Dance Recording. To this day, it’s Flume’s most streamed song on Spotify.

92 Bangarang – Skrillex

Skrillex won back-to-back Grammy awards for Best Dance Recording and Best Dance/Electronica Album in 2011 and 2012. The latter was from his Bangarang project with the title track winning the prestigious award.

93 Fade Into Darkness – Avicii

The infectious piano melody encapsulated the melodic house wunderkids’ early ability, as the hit predecessor to his world renowned “Levels.” “Fade Into Darkness” served as a momentum that catapulted Avicii to the top of the industry greats.

94 Wake Me Up – Avicii

Avicii’s ‘Wake Me Up’ featuring  Aloe Blacc has been named as the highest charting dance track of the decade as a seminal closing or opening song for Tim’s 2013 tour supporting his True album that crossed country music into the electronic music realm for an epic and emotional melody escapade. The track is Avicii’s most streamed song on Spotify, reaching close to 1 billion streams all-time. 

95 Summertime Sadness – Lana Del Rey (Cedric Gervais Remix)

An oxymoronic summer anthem flipped one of Lana Del Rey’s number six Billboard topper for a 2014 Grammy Award winner for Best Remixed Recording, Non-Classical.

96 Original DonMajor Lazer

The dancehall trio partnered with The Partysquad for a festival staple in their 2012 and beyond sets. Notable remixes from Flosstradamus made it to Major Lazer’s essential list on Spotify in 2018.

97 Techno – Destructo

Gary Richards (Destructo) took Eminem’s infamous Moby diss from “Without Me” (“Nobody listens to techno!”) and set the record straight.

98 I Want U – Alison Wonderland

The effervescent Alison Wonderland at her best. “I Want U” is the bouncy, frolicsome trap that had us hooked from that first time we watched her crawl up on the decks.

99 Bodies – Drowning Pool (Drezo remix)

Drezo has a penchant for frequenting the smoky and seemingly uninhabitable corners of the dance music continuum. His “Bodies” remix soon became a soul-sucking insertion in hundreds of artists’ sets across the globe, from festival front gates to covert club floors.

100 OKAY – Shiba San

If anyone can make tech-house digestible for the uninitiated, it’s Dirtybird dynamo Shiba San. “OKAY”‘s genius is in its sensational simplicity. The four-on-the-floor guru has been stripping crowds of all will power and sensibility with this one since its 2014 release.

Dancing Astronaut’s BIG 100—Top 25 Electronic Albums of the Decade

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Dancing Astronaut’s BIG 100—Top 25 Electronic Albums of the DecadeAlbums Of The Decade

2010 may as well have been a lifetime ago. At the breakneck pace by which dance music throttles through the stratosphere, the decade is ending in an entirely unrecognizable place from where it began. For context—ten years ago, Electric Daisy Carnival was held in Los Angeles, not Las Vegas, where the Los Angeles Rams now play. Only 250,000 people were paying for a Swedish music streaming service called Spotify, and Billie Eilish was finishing up second grade. It’s been a wild ride through the 10’s, largely soundtracked by EDM’s global boom into a multi-billion dollar industry. Ten years ago our culture was creeping out of South London basements and New York warehouses, and now we’re performing at the Olympics.

So now, as the single most important, historic, and certainly memorable decade dance music has ever seen draws to a close, we had to figure out a new way to break down how far the culture has come. One master list couldn’t possibly reflect the decade in review. In effort to properly recognize the remarkable collection of events that has brought us here, we’re tweaking our typical end-of-the-year model. Instead, we’re dividing the decade’s most deserving into a handful of unique categories.

In review of 2010 – 2019, the most important factors that shaped the decade were Artists of the Decade, Labels of the Decade, Albums of the Decade, and Most Impactful Moments of the Decade. Together, they comprise Dancing Astronaut’s decade-end collection. Introducing, The Big 100.

So without further ado, Dancing Astronaut‘s 25 Most Impactful Albums of the Decade—in no particular order.


Justice – Woman (2016)

Matching their sonic savviness to the name printed on the record’s gatefold, leave it to Justice to challenge dance music’s status quo while highlighting the intensely empowering nature of the femme. The pair honed in on one key component throughout the recording process: rather than break character with an attempt to chase mainstream success, Justice, as they always have, opt to open-endedly allow pop culture to decide its own relationship to their work. The intent over the LP’s 10-track span is singularly focused on genuine songwriting, and in turn, procuring timeless dance classics. From its core to its perimeter, that is exactly what Woman is: a collection of instant-classic indie dance gems.

It feels like it has been ages since Audio, Video, Disco — eons since †. Now, grown men whose days of black leather jackets and studs are possibly behind them, Gaspard and Xavier have written a record that is perhaps more in-tune with their emotional capacities, while simultaneously challenging the fleeting nature of pop success. Ultimately, Justice have delivered another ageless dance opus with Woman, which spawned a Grammy-nominated live album, one of the best live shows of the decade that inspired a visual feature to boot, capping off a momentous decade for the paragons of French house. -David Klemow

ODESZA – A Moment Apart (2017)

Commencing the Foreign Family Collective bosses’ official foray into the pop space, A Moment Apart stands as ODESZA‘s most voraciously streamed and referenced LP to date. With their fluttery Summer’s Gone and In Return LPs, the ethereal electronica duo arrested the soul of the electronic zeitgeist’s chill-out craze, cropping up midway through the ’10s, when the confounding side-effects of the dubstep onslaught had subsided some. A Moment Apart did double time at the 2017 Grammy Awards, raking in a pair of nominations for Best Dance Recording (“Line of Sight”) and Best Electronic Album.

ODESZA’s most accessible and multifarious work to date, A Moment Apart, while perhaps less compositionally daring, allowed ODESZA to play with approach, while remaining just near enough to their celestial center. A purposeful album’s album, rather than a mere arbitrary collection of tracks. -Bella Bagshaw

Pretty Lights – A Color Map Of The Sun (2013)

Pretty Lights’ magnum opus by DA standards, A Color Map Of The Sun was, mid-decade (and remains now), an industry-wide point of contention. Critics complained the album was somewhat anemic in its experimentation or delivery of stark “creative growth,” or entirely passed it off as spacey stoner fodder. But why fix what was never broken? What’s clear is that Derek Vincent Smith conceived the LP as a vessel to expound on his inimitable, jazzy jamtronica hybrid with his most incisive execution to date. Even among tracks like “Yellow Bird,” with its almost anesthetizing instrumental loop or the melancholic strut of “Go Down Sunshine,” no corner of the work arrives without gusto.

The vinyl sampling on the LP further solidified him as the master of homage. Funk, soul, hip-hop, electronic listening music, Smith weaves in and out of these worlds without as much as a warning, though none is warranted. The quintessential curator of chromatic live production, whether he meant to or not, wielded the work to push innumerable jam/instrumental purists over the synthesized precipice—past the point of no return—sending them happily dazed and plummeting eternally into the electronic ether. -Bella Bagshaw

SebastiAn – Total (2011)

Unapologetically abrasive in all the right ways, SebastiAn’s debut record, Total was one hell of a coming out party for the French-Serbian musician. But it also served as a much-needed statement its host label, Ed Banger Records. Until then, the iconic French house music collective had strokes of brilliance but was largely defined by its affiliations with the Daft Punk and a handful of genre-defying releases from Justice.

In Total, SebastiAn captured the raw power and undeniable strands of funk roadmapped by the genre’s forefathers, all the while insisting on finding his brilliance through innovation rather than emulation. With the record’s needle lifting after over 20 tracks, Total interludes between mind-rattling electro and silky-smooth pop-disco for the rare electronic LP that isn’t defined by its singles, but the spirited collage built around them. –Josh Stewart

Madeon – Adventure (2015)

A Frenchman making feel-good electro—wild, right? Well, wait just a minute. Madeon certainly did his homework for his long play debut (see: “Pop Culture (mashup)”). That’s the genius of Adventure. He borrows what’s useful in the moment, often going back to go forward. Songs like the effervescent, Passion Pit-assisted “Pay No Mind,” fit for Androids frolicking under a disco ball, fall effortlessly into place while the then-20-year-old producer cut his teeth on earnest, almost smoldering compositions like “Imperium.” Adventure was just that: a journey worth the jaunt, filled with as much complexity as color. -Bella Bagshaw

Avicii – True (2013)

Few records have been able to illustrate the symbiotic potential of traditional instrumentation and electronic production more cogently than Avicii‘s True. Keeping perfect time with EDM’s propulsion into the musical vernacular, True emitted the raw, evocative power and deadly danceability of progressive house. But make no mistake: we were always dealing with a pop record, here.

By then already a global sensation, the Swedish wunderkind sent tremors through the industry at large when he brought up an incisive assortment of soul and bluegrass musicians at the 2013 edition of Ultra. That day, Avicii’s hallowed act of synergy set fire to the torch that still burns with his legacy. Whether we were ready or not, True sent the very foundations of the electronic infrastructure shifting underfoot. -Bella Bagshaw

Disclosure – Settle (2014)

When Disclosure’s debut album Settle landed in 2013, everyone—from music fanatics to industry figures and critics—wanted a proper taste. Peaking at No. 1 across multiple charts including Billboard’s Dance/Electronic Albums and receiving widespread acclaim, Settle struck the scene as both an instant refresher and derivative of dance music’s past. The magic of the record lies within its stylistic journey through a multitude of dance sub genres including bass music, house, garage, ultimately, pulled together by a synergetic pop intention composed not of mass appeal, but of motivation to magnetize all niches of dance listeners. -Jessica Mao

deadmau5 – while(1<2) (2014)

Perhaps the hallmark of electronic albums of the decade, deadmau5’s 25-track dance epic holds the LP format near and dear, leaving little room for skim listening. The record’s progressive composition of rich melodies, moody, cinematic aesthetics, and throbbing electro still stands as one of deadmau5’s most versatile works to date.

Arriving at a frankly lackluster time for electronic albums, while(1<2)’s challenged the status quo of the moment, while also providing a wider scope with which to view the full breadth of deadmau5’s talent. The double-sided endeavor offers a suspenseful sonic journey through stripped back ambient and downtempo plays, uplifting electro, chugging progressive breaks, and more. No stranger to the full-length format, deadmau5 takes on his seventh LP with a brazen discontent for the lack of originality dance music purists bemoaned about at the time, offering an unforgettable double dose of creativity on while(1<2), which itself may have served to re-galvanize the album format in electronic music. -David Klemow

Daft Punk – Random Access Memories (2013)

Looking back on the most important decade in dance music, the defining highlight had to have been the release of Daft Punk’s Random Access Memories. Daft Punk’s return in 2013 was special, not only because the legendary French Androids had delivered their first LP in eight years, but because the album was legitimizing for electronic dance music in many ways. It came at the front half of EDM’s global boom, proving to the world that electronic dance music wasn’t just millennial festival fodder with Nile Rodgers, Pharrell Williams, and Giorgio Morodor in tow. The record masterfully presented intelligent, disco-inspired sounds in with an incredibly fresh, modern perspective to audiences who were still trying to figure out if mainstream electronic music was… well, legit.

Random Access Memories would remind everyone who the genre’s omniscient godfathers were, net the duo four Grammy Awards along the way, help guide vinyl’s resurgence selling the most units of the decade, and cement Daft Punk’s legacy all over again. -David Klemow

Skrillex – Recess (2014)

From the moment we first heard, “to get a thousand miles from the Earth, a rocket would need this much power,” Recess would change the electronic landscape and set Skrillex on a crash course for pop superstardom. Sonny Moore’s 2014 debut LP under the Skrillex moniker came well after he had already established his Grammy Award-winning sound, though the album is really what planted Moore’s flag as an electronic trailblazer that was here to stay. The record was a carefree intergalactic thrill ride that featured a budding Chance The Rapper, a preview taste of the oncoming K-pop tidal wave with G-Dragon, CL, and Diplo, and a healthy dose of heavy dub appeal from the Ragga Twins. Infectiously aggressive yet in touch with its dance-friendly roots, Recess culminated into one of the best electronic albums of the decade.

In the years since Skrillex’s debut studio LP, his list of credentials have outgrown the confines of electronic dance music in remarkable ways. He’s gone on to produce for the world’s greatest pop stars, from Justin Bieber to Mariah Carey. He’s tackled movie soundtracks, linked with rappers, produced an entire joint album with Diplo, and grown OWSLA into one of the country’s premier electronic imprints. With an impending sophomore follow up slated for 2020, we’re already at the edge of our seats for the next chapter in Skrillex’s momentous career. -David Klemow

Jamie xx – In Colour (2015)

The production backbone of The xx, Jamie xx’s In Colour is as much an album of yesteryear as it is an album of tomorrow. On one hand, the sample-driven concepts over Jamie Smith’s often breakbeat-influenced beats harken back to a time when electronic music simply felt more soulful. On the other, the album doesn’t only disregard the distinction between electronic genres, but goes to great lengths to blur the line between what’s full-blown “electronic” and what’s a bit more nebulous; a direction that dance music continues to embrace even heading into 2020.

What makes In Colour such a pinnacle of artistic success however, isn’t the album’s memorable singles or gold-lined production, but its ability to make its listener feel a technicolor assortment of nostalgia, happiness, pain, and sorrow, often simultaneously. -Josh Stewart

TNGHT – TNGHT (2012)

The 2010s can’t be accurately recapped without talking about trap music’s viral takeover, and electronic music’s obsession with trap can’t be adequately described without paying due respect to TNGHT. While the duo’s 2012 self-titled TNGHT project isn’t a full-length LP, the release served to propel the two producers’ bombastic, aggressively experimental sound to massive mainstream acclaim, making for one of the most impactful releases of the decade. The pair went radio silent as quickly as they had dominated the scene, though by 2019, TNGHT had reconvened once again, picking up exactly where they left off. -David Klemow

ZEDD – Clarity (2012)

Once ZEDD delivered his debut studio album, Clarity, in 2012, it was clear the division between pop and electronic music was going to be permanently blurred going forward. The Interscope Records project effectively defined EDM’s global takeoff with singles “Shave It Up,” “Spectrum,” and “Clarity,” all charting in the top 10 that year and into 2013. The record’s inescapable popularity was contingent on how it would define dance-pop, and would not only go on to earn a Grammy for Best Dance Recording at the 56th Grammy Awards, but also cement ZEDD’s position as one of the most in-demand producers of the decade. -David Klemow

Above & Beyond – Group Therapy (2011)

How many artists can say their record bears the name of a coinciding global event phenomenon and hallowed weekly radio show? Group Therapy does. The quintessential progressive/trance trio’s 2011 album is dripping with utterly epic euphoria from start to finish. “Cheesy” was never something Above & Beyond were afraid of, nor should they be. The album sees them move dexterously through dreamy, twinkling offerings like “Alchemy,” vocalized by serial A&B collaborator, Zoë Johnston, to full-on club demolitions like “Sun & Moon.” Instrumental in acquiring the trio, and the trance genre at large, worldwide fandom, Group Therapy also garnered the group exponential label traction, to their now-revered Anjunabeats imprint. -Bella Bagshaw

Jack Ü – Skrillex and Diplo Present Jack Ü (2015)

The Jack Ü project was equal parts irreverent DIY fun, hard-knocking dance-pop fusions, and spastic genre hopscotch all wrapped into one. Skrillex and Diplo Present Jack Ü includes contributions from NOLA bounce star Fly Boi Keno, hip-hop heroine Missy Elliot, Keisza, 2 Chainz, Snails. And what’s more, undoubtedly resurrecting Justin Bieber’s career and ultimately positioning Diplo and Skrillex as the top pop producers of the decade. Once the divisions between pop and electronic music broke down, Jack Ü jumped in to bridge the gap with their hypnotic brand of fizzy, aggressively danceable electronic music. Behind the success of one joint record together, the two dance titans won a pair of Grammy Awards for Best Dance/Electronic Album and Best Dance Recording respectively at the 58th Annual Grammy Awards. -David Klemow

Aphex Twin – Syro (2014)

It had been 13 years since Aphex Twin’s previous release when he delivered his cerebral Syro LP in 2014. At the time, to have a full fledged comeback from Richard James was quite the occasion. The album presented a different side of Aphex Twin, though after more than a decade since his last full body of work, it’s no riddle why. Syro landed as a more accessible listen than previous works thanks to a more melodic approach in production.

However, the album was still unmistakably Aphex Twin from start to closing interlude. It was still the kind of twisted, frenetic work that could only permeate from the mind of James. Five years after Syro’s release and Aphex Twin’s return to live performance, and the album’s painstaking attention to detail is still commendably obvious, its off-kilter, hair-raising sonic complexion as bold as ever. -David Klemow

Prydz – Opus (2016)

There’s a fine line between listening music and club music when it comes to EDM and nobody seems to find the sweet spot between the two quite like Eric Prydz. Two parts progressive, one part electro, and just a dash of synth-wave, Prydz’ debut album Opus traces the storied Swedish producer’s exuberant catalogue over two meaty discs with little to no filler. With singles like “Generate” that don’t just define an album or a trending style, but a whole era of mainstage house music, Opus is rare dance album that’s worth revisiting time and time again. -Josh Stewart

Baauer – Aa (2016)

Aa is a rambunctious collection that paints a candid picture of Baauer’s beginnings as an artist. As a young man, Baauer had already called everywhere home from Philly, to London, Brooklyn, to Germany. It was traveling–not touring–that ultimately provided the inspirational bedrock beneath Aa. Baauer’s introductory offering is a mixed bag of worldly inspiration, tied together by an evident allegiance to his roots and his uncompromised desire to experiment. This desire spills from every corner of the project. From its masterful sound design to the eccentrically abstract artwork of the record, Aa is a flowing portrait of Baauer’s mind pressed onto wax.

Cumulatively, Aa is the perfect split between the hard-hitting fusion of dance, trap, and hip-hop and a handful of fearlessly strange, gripping instrumentals. Baauer meanders between inspirations, places, faces, sounds, and styles, agglomerating a bright, chaotic collection of work that is deeply authentic to his roots. Aa runs the gamut of Baauer’s full range of inspirations, ranging from the menacing grime styling of “Day Ones” to the calmative ease of “Body.” The record presents Baauer’s ascension to a creative level that exceeds the listening value of “Harlem Shake’s” viral ubiquity. -David Klemow

Duck Sauce – Quack (2014)

Duck Sauce’s beloved Quack LP gave us a 12-track fun-or-bust stroll down disco lane, broken up by skits to make for a nostalgic flow inspired by the classic hip-hop albums of the ’90s and the funk of the ’80s. Quack, the full-length debut from a spirited and sporadically active collaborative venture between A-Trak and Armand Van Helden, which enjoyed a prolific singles run between 2009 and 2013 with “aNYway,” “Barbara Streisand,” “Big Bad Wolf,” and “Radio Stereo,” proved that dance music doesn’t need to take itself too seriously; and, in fact, it shouldn’t.

The album was a masterclass in sample pulling. Standouts include The Time Bandits’ “Live It Up,” and The Members’ “Radio” impresses for what would be the best use of sampling if not for “Ring Me,” A La Carte’s “Ring Me Honey,” Melissa Manchester’s 1985 hit “Energy” and more. It’s the sort of approach to an album where A-Trak and Armand stick to their extra casual, comedy-leaning ethos. Six years after the epically quirky LP’s release, it proved that electronic music could sustain the album format, it didn’t have to be a grab for mainstream marketability, and it can still make people dance. The record stands as if to say that “Quack” doesn’t mean anything, and that’s what makes it meaningful. -David Klemow

Flume – Skin (2016)

At the apex of the futuristic bass movement’s upward crawl stands one of Australia’s token music-makers, Flume and his second solo album, Skin. Following the hungrily lauded record’s release, contrived imitations pervaded the SoundCloud sonic-scape soon after. But none could achieve quite the same warped, melodic maximalism, while still remaining accessible to the average listener; not like Flume. With a technicolor assortment of guest features, ranging from the then-up-and-coming Tove Lo to Chicago rapper Vic Mensa to British singer/producer duo, AlunaGeorge, Skin arrived in amorphous fashion. The former What So Not affiliate seemed to be asking, “What can’t I lend my beats to?” Rhetorically, of course. -Bella Bagshaw

Kaytranada – 99.9% (2016)

Kaytranada really planted his flag in 2016 with his debut full-length studio project 99.9%, establishing himself as one of the keenest electronic minds in the game. The 15-track album, released via XL Recordings and Ultra, enjoyed overwhelmingly positive critical reception right from the outset. The LP included highlight contributions from Anderson .Paak, Craig David, Little Dragon, AlunaGeorge, and BadBadNotGood. Kaytranada’s 99.9% rolled and wrapped hazy neo-soul, uplifting hip-hop inspirations, elements of knocking trap percussion, and crisp, shimmering jazz into an enjoyable late night smoke sesh with friends that simply wouldn’t grow old, no matter how many repeated spins you gave it.

The record is a bold amalgam of sounds that comes together under a sharply conceptual electronic theme, and catapulted Kaytranada atop his rightful throne as one of the most esteemed crossover producers of the decade. -David Klemow

Gesaffelstein – Aleph (2013)

Released on Bromance Records, Gesaffelstein’s 2013 debut album Aleph officially introduces the dark techno backbone that Michael Levy has made a Hall-of-Fame career from. Masterfully crafted, the album pops and hisses throughout a variety of mechanical soundscapes, each track donning its own distinct attitude. At the end of the decade it stands as a techno masterpiece, spiraling through industrial synths and pulsing builds.

Aleph encapsulates a sinister techno spin on classic ’90s West Coast rap, overcast electronic ballads, and tinges of acid house and orthodox French techno. Gesaffelstein has always been a commanding presence since his emergence, with impressive production credits on albums like Yeezus, remixing the likes of Justice, Lana Del Rey and Depeche Mode, but with the release of his first full-length studio album, Levy gave French techno a jolt of energy, taking the listener on a dark, convoluted, and as the decade has proven, timeless ride. -David Klemow

Porter Robinson – Worlds (2014)

Gone is the full-throttle euphoria of “Language.” Gone is the dancefloor weaponry of Spitfire, which arrived just two years prior. The bashful anime auteur is vulnerable, seemingly for the first time, inside Worlds. He even lends his pitched-up vocals to a handful of the tracks, a welcomed contrast to the brash, bro-ey male bravado permeating the dance music scene at the time. The sonic world building erected within the LP has been paralleled by none since Worlds‘ debut. Porter Robinson comprised the record as a master storyteller would, cognizant of narrative, of pace, of tone, as the ship beats on towards its tenacious crescendo, “Goodbye To A World.” Bursting with shimmery electro-pop, Worlds stands as a happy harbinger into EDM’s post-“Where’s the drop?” ethos. -Bella Bagshaw

David Guetta – Nothing But The Beat (2011)

Though Guetta had already been chopping heads in the dance game for decades by this point, Nothing But The Beat was a breakthrough for dance music’s open-arms US adoption. That no-introduction-needed pop icons like Sia, Justin Timberlake, and Lil Wayne wanted to lend their voices to the dance music revolution was nothing short of watershed for our purposes. It was hard to turn on a radio without “Titanium”‘s prophetic ring in tandem, or step onto a club floor without Nicki Minaj electing to “Turn Me On.” Was the record overtly gimmicky at times? See: “I Just Wanna Fuck.” Of course, but nonetheless, the Frenchman had successfully spoonfed four-on-the-floor to the masses, whether they knew it or not. -Bella Bagshaw

Nero – Welcome Reality + (2011)

Fueling some of the most high-profile soon-to-be remix material, Welcome Reality + melded the ferocity of the dub and drum ‘n’ bass netherworlds to rock/dance pop sensibilities. Americans were as confounded as they were enamored by the larger-than-life onslaught of bass alongside the NERO vocalist Alana Watson’s rapturous yearning. The apocalyptic landscape of the LP bred hellfire and supreme sweetness hand-in-hand. Only NERO could imbue the starlit synth-pop of “Crush On You” against the futuristic bass fury of tracks like “Doomsday” inside a single record. It incited wall-to-wall remix treatments from the likes of Skrillex, Flux Pavilion, Calvin Harris, and many more worthy admirers. -Bella Bagshaw

Dancing Astronaut’s BIG 100—Top 25 Artists of the Decade

This post was originally published on this site

Dancing Astronaut’s BIG 100—Top 25 Artists of the DecadeUntitled Design 1 1

2010 may as well have been a lifetime ago. At the breakneck pace by which dance music throttles through the stratosphere, the decade is ending in an entirely unrecognizable place from where it began. For context—ten years ago, Electric Daisy Carnival was held in Los Angeles, not Las Vegas, where the Los Angeles Rams now play. Only 250,000 people were paying for a Swedish music streaming service called Spotify, and Billie Eilish was finishing up second grade. It’s been a wild ride through the 10’s, largely soundtracked by EDM’s global boom into a multi-billion dollar industry. Ten years ago our culture was creeping out of South London basements and New York warehouses, and now we’re performing at the Olympics.

So now, as the single most important, historic, and certainly memorable decade dance music has ever seen draws to a close, we had to figure out a new way to break down how far the culture has come. One master list couldn’t possibly reflect the decade in review. In effort to properly recognize the remarkable collection of events that has brought us here, we’re tweaking our typical end-of-the-year model. Instead, we’re dividing the decade’s most deserving into a handful of unique categories.

In review of 2010 – 2019, the most important factors that shaped the decade were Artists of the Decade, Labels of the Decade, Albums of the Decade, and Most Impactful Moments of the Decade. Together, they comprise Dancing Astronaut’s decade-end collection. Introducing, The Big 100.


25. Richie Hawtin –

Among the greatest techno deities stands Richie Hawtin, watching another ultra successful decade shrink in his rearview mirror. Hawtin’s emphasis on the intersection of technology and his craft have made him one of the most dynamic minds in all of electronic music, from his CLOSE live show to the production of his own Model 1 mixer. He’s clocked two Essential Mixes in the last decade, hosted a beloved party series on Ibiza, hit a list of the most prestigious festivals and events across the world, performed unforgettable back-to-back sets with deadmau5, brought techno to the Guggenheim, and even resurrected his Plastikman alter ego. Electronic music went largely mainstream in the 10’s, but that didn’t stop Hawtin from holding it down for the underground with a firm, unrelenting grip.

Dancing Astronaut’s BIG 100—Top 25 Artists of the DecadeRichie Hawtin Confirms Plastikman Alias 2019 Return

24. Bassnectar –

Lorin Ashton, better known to his loyal fans as Bassnectar, has spent the decade swallowing crowds with his proprietary blend of bass, punk rock, and electronica, with a fanbase perhaps best compared to the millennial generation’s Deadheads.

In the last ten years, the Bassnectar team has established themselves as an elite live entertainment group, capable of packing stadiums and festivals alike, from selling out Madison Square Garden for Bass Center VIII in 2014 to their homegrown, three-day, sold out, Deja Vroom Festival in Cancun. Selling out has become status quo for the project fronted by Ashton, whose decade-long staying power is fueled by the the ever-evolving bass landscape. Ten projects in ten years stamp a mark of prolific output from Ashton. From Divergent Spectrum (2011) to Unlimited (2016), the beloved king of bass claimed two No. 2 slots and three No. 1’s on Billboard’s US Dance Album charts. What’s more, Bassnectar has supported some of the most successful bass music innovators of the day such as G Jones, Eprom, ill Gates, while uplifting the likes of PEEKABOO, and more.— Chris Stack

23. Kygo –

Just as RL Grime did for trap and Flume did for future bass, tropical house’s moment in the sun during the middle of the decade can’t be discussed without crediting Kygo’s championing of the genre. The Norwegian hitmaker may even be the first real star of the streaming era, amassing a billion streams by 2015, just a year after his emergence, becoming the fastest artist on Spotify to achieve the benchmark. Behind his brand of sun-soaked poolside house, Kygo carved out his place in the decade’s top echelon, culminating in a historical performance at the Rio Olympics closing ceremony.

22. Anna Lunoe

Easily one of Australia’s brightest musical exports of the decade, Anna Lunoe firmly holds her place as one of dance music’s favorite curators while simultaneously rocking crowds as a triple threat producer, DJ, and singer. From her Beats 1 stint to appearances on Mad Decent, Fools Gold, Future Classic, and Ultra, Luney commands a certain sway among DJ circles while still maintaining her status as one of the most down-to-earth selectors in the game. In the summer of 2016, the Bass Drum Dealer made history alongside Alison Wonderland by becoming the first solo female DJs to perform on the main stage at Electric Daisy Carnival in Las Vegas.

Dancing Astronaut’s BIG 100—Top 25 Artists of the DecadeAnna Lunoe Hyperhouse 1

21. Noisia –

You never know what you’ve got until it’s gone. Well, in the case of Noisia, that couldn’t be more on the nose. In 2019, the seminal Dutch drum ‘n’ bass trio announced an impending split in 2020, exactly 20 years after their formation. Fear not, for a victory lap is in order for one of the most influential dance groups of all time—hitting major festivals and events next year for an extended farewell. The decade was ushered in by their debut studio album Split The Atom in 2010, they helped break Skrillex to the world, they did their part to put British hip-hop on the map well before grime took a hold of the cultural zeitgeist with I Am Legion alongside Foreign Beggars, and now, after a monumentally successful run, Noisia is ready to hang it up in search of new creative journeys. Though, as the decade draws to a close and bass music currently commands more sub-genres and new incoming talent than any other category of electronic music, Noisia’s impact on that can’t be understated.

20. RL Grime –

There’s no talking about the last decade in electronic music without acknowledging trap music’s moment. In 2012, Henry Steinway was already enjoying a successful career as a DJ, known as Clockwork. But the moment he donned the RL Grime moniker and he and Salva laid their unforgettable spin on Kanye West’s “Mercy,” things changed forever. Not just for Steinway, but for electronic dance music as a whole. Trap, or rather, hip-hop’s emerging intersection with club music, would go on to fuel the next two years of electronic music’s meteoric rise, and firmly establish RL Grime as the genre’s forefather. His sound has changed considerably since his take on Benny Benassi’s “Satisfaction,” and he’s become a label head in the latter part of the decade, championing a new wave of talent under the Sable Valley banner. This decade wouldn’t be what it was without RL Grime.

19. Mat Zo

Mat Zo has spent the decade keeping us guessing in the best possible ways. He’s been a chameleon of styles and genres, with a catalog that spans some of dance music’s finest imprints. Not to mention founding his own esteemed label by the middle of the decade, Mad Zoo. But while Zo has shared his affinities for trance, bass, electro, and drum ‘n’ bass in nearly equal measures over the last ten years, he’s also been a vocal critic of dance music’s shortcomings, generating a voraciously loyal fanbase in the process. His two studio albums, 2013’s Damage Control and 2016’s Self Assemble still deserved repeated plays as some of the most innovative works of the decade, and with allusions to a third LP sometime in the future, look for Mat Zo to continue commanding the respect he’s earned as a new decade unfolds.

18. Swedish House Mafia

One would be hard pressed to imagine electronic dance music in 2010 without “One” playing in their head. Axwell, Sebastian Ingrosso, and Steve Angello acted as a critical authority in early 2010’s, ushering in dance music’s global invasion with a commanding presence. The Swedes transported their electro and progressive house sound across the Atlantic and in the process, issued a new rockstar archetype that had everyone from Miami to Ibiza rocking a black v-neck and skinny jeans. Every single release the group delivered touched the charts, including the likes of “Save the World” “Don’t You Worry Child,” both of which earned Grammy nominations. The Swedish supergroup’s impact was perhaps felt the most when, at the top of their game, they decided to call it quits on the Mafia life amid rising inter-group tensions and an unsustainable lifestyle. Their dissolution in 2013 was the first real massive victory lap EDM had ever seen; our parents would equate it to an Elton John or Kiss farewell stadium tour. The trio’s not-so-secret reformation in 2018 precisely exemplified their international notoriety when they took on closing duties at Ultra five years after they initially said goodbye. Between show cancellations and an absence of new music following their realignment, Swedish House Mafia’s final moments of the decade were undoubtedly less than ideal, but the new era only holds inklings of promise as they build upon their celebrated legacy. — Ross Goldenberg

Dancing Astronaut’s BIG 100—Top 25 Artists of the DecadeSwedish House Mafia Ultra 2018 DA

17. Above & Beyond

As trance legends, Above & Beyond have sustained themselves as one of dance music’s most beloved artists of the decade for a multitude of reasons. Despite their artistic evolution from their Oceanlab work to critically acclaimed Group Therapy and their more modern dance stylings, one defining characteristic has remained constant—an innate dedication to their community through the power of music. The group’s unmistakable synergy across their Group Therapy Radio program, live shows and musicality, the English dance outfit never cease to champion music in a way that unites their listeners through the boundaries of country lines and language. Above & Beyond’s proven longevity and ability to break down fans’ emotional pretenses and build them back up have made them an unstoppable force on the international dance circuit. What’s more—Anjunabeats and Anjunadeep have become mainstay brands for dance music fans across the globe, providing further evidence that the trio have undoubtedly earned a place among the top artists of the decade. — Jessica Mao

16. Eric Prydz

Eric Prydz makes our Top Artists of the Decade list not by riding the surging wave of any particular trend but by simply honing his own craft year after year which translate into some of the most technologically forward performances in the dance music space. The Prydz sound falls somewhere between the progressive and electro side of house music, but his exceptionally unique flavor profile, paired with a fervor for melodies that are as sophisticated as they are aurally pleasing has given the Swedish icon a signature sound all his own. Of course, Eric Prydz is a seasoned veteran of electronic music, but between his thriving alter-egos (like Pryda and Cirez D), set lists of largely unreleased tunes, and a live show as ambitious as anybody’s in the industry, it’s crazy to think that Eric Prydz’ best decades could still be ahead of him. — Josh Stewart

15. Gesaffelstein

It’s almost comical to think that a decade ago, Gesaffelstein was just in the zygotic stages of his career. Prior to 2010, Michel Lévy had but three releases to his pseudonym — obscure cuts which showed promise, but belied the magnitude of what was to come. Albeit, it’s unlikely that even Lévy himself could have imagined the heights his grandeur would reach by 2020. By reaching into the deepest chasms of musical possibilities, Gesaffelstein ascended to the pinnacle of a tower he himself built. His absence for most of the decade’s latter half was palpable, fraught by many imitators, but zero duplicators. To dub Gesaffelstein as the greatest artist of the century would only modestly stretch the limits of journalistic objectivity. As such, including him as one of the decade’s best is a no-brainer. Gesaffelstein’s unprecedented talents have proven to serve as a stark beacon across the barriers of dance music. His is a light so overwhelming in its grace, that it casts over all contenders a shadow as dark as his Vantablack armor. — Will McCarthy

Dancing Astronaut’s BIG 100—Top 25 Artists of the DecadeGesaffelstein Coachella 2019 Julian Bajsel

14. Calvin Harris –

Few artists took as much advantage of dance music’s crossover into pop culture as Calvin Harris. The Scottish hitmaker started the decade as an already firm force in dance music, going on to found Fly Eye Records at the onset of the decade. By the middle of it he was producing chart-topping hits with Rihanna and commanding the second largest headlining crowd Coachella had ever seen. By the tail end of the 10’s, Harris had a platinum plaque on his wall, working with Pharrell, Migos, Frank Ocean, Travis Scott, and Ariana Grande, closing in one nearly $200 million in earnings. From a dollars perspective, 2010 – 2019 unquestionably belonged to Calvin Harris.

13. Daft Punk –

Even as the entertainment industry’s most elusive creators, Daft Punk’s impact can be felt all over the decade. From their contribution to Disney’s Tron: Legacy to producing for the decade’s most dominant R&B force, the Android keep an omniscient eye over the ever-evolving music landscape. And each time they drop in, whatever they offer feels so new and fresh, it proves that Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo and Thomas Bangalter command a level of influence unknown to any other musical artist today. Their signing to Columbia Records and subsequent critically lauded 2013 comeback LP, Random Access Memories, was one of the biggest releases of the decade, and while there’s never any promise the two knighted French visionaries will ever have more to offer, we take comfort in knowing they’re never really that far away.

Dancing Astronaut’s BIG 100—Top 25 Artists of the DecadeDaft Punk Photo Credit Olivier Zahm

12. Claude VonStroke

Claude VonStroke‘s band of rump-shaking house aficionados were happy holding down their lane, representing the bay area with their looney, groovy brand of club music. But as house music splintered throughout the decade into sub-genres and movements, San Francisco’s Dirtybird Players rose to the top of their respective game behind the papa bear leadership of VonStroke. Now, as a momentous decade for Claude nears its conclusion, the man who started out hosting barbecues in the park with nothing more than friends, a sound system, and delicious grilled meats has become an accomplished events curator behind the ultra-successful BBQ and Campout events that represent the label’s humble beginnings. Now, Dirtybird and their brand of zany, fun-loving house music chugs into the next decade, their ethos being more of a movement, or even a family now, than a record label and its fanbase. It wouldn’t have been possible without everyone’s favorite camp counselor, and for that Claude VonStroke easily places among the greatest artists of this decade.

11. ZEDD –

ZEDD‘s near-singlehanded blurring of the pop and EDM lines made this an unforgettable decade for the Russian-German DJ/producer. Starting out as one of Skrillex’s earliest protégés, ZEDD carved out an incredibly prosperous decade, ending it as one of the highest paid DJs in the world year-over-year clocking well over a $100 million over the last five years behind massive streaming numbers and a dominating track record of marquee Vegas residencies. He covered Forbes‘ 30 Under 30 issue in 2017 after two ultra-successful LPs: True Colors (2016) and Clarity (2014), that peaked at No. 2 and No. 1 respectively on the US dance charts. Furthermore, the classically trained musician helped champion the likes of Alessia Cara, Maren Morris, Grey, Ariana Grande and more as his steep ascent to pop music’s top echelon continued to trend upward. ZEDD continues to help bridge the gap between pop production and EDM, and with a new decade set to unfold, he’s primed to write his trajectory through 2020 and beyond.

10. Justice –

Despite an aversion to the fanfare and celebrity that being global superstar DJs entails, Justice quietly, authoritatively defined the decade behind their characteristically stoic French cool. Before 2010, the duo was instrumental in laying the groundwork for dance music’s global takeover with material like “We Are Your Friends” and “D.A.N.C.E.,” but with 2011’s Audio Video Disco, Gaspard Augé and Xavier de Rosnay went from multi-faceted creatives to electronic music icons. The record led to a headlining Coachella set in 2012 and a live album, Access All Arenas the following year. By the end of the decade, the pair had enjoyed a relative hiatus and come back with Woman, a Grammy-winning Woman Worldwide live record, and a return to visual media with IRIS: A Space Opera by Justice. The pair’s French disco and house roots bled into harder club sounds, cinematic progressive rock, metal, and more. When they re-emerge in the next decade, expect their influence to be as profound as ever, even if it takes a different shape entirely.

Dancing Astronaut’s BIG 100—Top 25 Artists of the DecadeJustice O2 Briton Academy Credit Guifre De Peray

09. Dillon Francis –

Dillon Francis’ inclusion on this list may come as a surprise, though, when factoring in the fact that he might be EDM’s first crossover pop culture star speaks volumes to his impact on the decade. Francis, Dancing Astronaut‘s Artist of the Year in 2018, started the 10’s as a festival undercard act; a goofy white kid messing around with the burgeoning Latin-influenced moombahton that Dave Nada was credited with creating around the time. Ten years later and Francis is back to championing Latin sounds, even scoring a Latin Grammy nomination on the way, but not before he went full circle with a highly publicized Columbia Records deal and subsequent move to independent status. He delivered a full-length studio record, a handful of mixtapes, and a jump to TV to boot. Francis may have been among the first DJs to master branding oneself, and as the decade reaches a wrap, he’s undoubtedly done his part to earn a designation as one of the most impactful artists in dance music today.

08. Boys Noize

A decade can seem to be an eternity in the lifespan of electronic music, but Alex Ridha’s musical journey began long before 10 years ago. Since the latter aughts, Boys Noize has been one of the most formidable figures in the adjacent realms of electro, techno, and acid house. In both his music and his live shows, the Berliner savant has set himself apart from the crowd with an unforgiving energy. From Power to Mayday and beyond, Boys Noize has packed sonic punch after punch with a punk-infused clamor that makes Sid Vicious seem more like Sid Rather Polite. Of course, Ridha’s musical output is by no means limited to his Boys Noize oeuvre. Perhaps no one else in dance music’s history has had a keener eye for recruiting collaborators. In his pairings, Ridha is a legend thrice over — alongside Skrillex, Mr. Oizo, and Chilly Gonzales,  he’s headlined festivals, and created some of the most delightfully aggressive, utterly bizarre, and mystically soothing songs of the electronic music zeitgeist. Indeed, Dog Blood, Handbraekes, and Octave Minds could all reasonably be considered among the best acts of the decade in their own rights. 

Most recently, Ridha has begun a crossover into the deeper house and techno scene with his ELAX alias, apparently vying for a fifth spot in the proverbial dancehall of fame. And, as 2020 ushers in the 15th anniversary of his Boysnoize Records imprint, there is little doubt that his continued contributions to the field will earn him countless more. — Will McCarthy

07. A-Trak –

Few have done more to bridge the gap between DJ culture and hip-hop than Brooklyn’s Alain Macklovitch, better known as A-Trak. Considering house music and hip-hop’s origins are about as close as Isaac and Ishmael’s, its surprising that nobody has ever stood so firmly on both sides of the fence as Fool’s Gold Records’ co-founder. In a previous life he served as Kanye West’s touring DJ. In the years between 2010 – 2019, A-Trak successfully ran one of dance music’s most in-demand labels, branded events offshoots, dabbled in fashion, founded an awards contest to keep turntablism alive, and creatively bounced between electro, trap, disco, house, and hip-hop with the likes of Young Thug, Baauer, Dillon Francis, GTA, and more.

During the decade where ten new DJs cropped up every day, A-Trak spent the last ten years reminding us why “real DJing” is so important while putting on a continuous masterclass in what that actually looks like.

Dancing Astronaut’s BIG 100—Top 25 Artists of the DecadeA Trak
Top Photo: Shane O’Neal

06. Flume

It would be a stretch to imagine that Flume had pictured back in 2010 where he would be in 2020. In 2011, Harley Streten was an unknown bedroom producer in Australia with dreams of grandeur. A pairing with friend Emoh Instead brought about What So Not, and by 2012, Streten had released a self-titled LP under his own Flume moniker. What happened next would change the course of dance music for the decade. At the top of their joint game, What So Not split with Emoh taking the reigns on the project himself. Flume would go on to follow up with a sophomore studio LP in 2016 that netted him his first Grammy the following year. Following Flume and Skin‘s respective successes would have been a tall order, but after a deserved hiatus, Flume capped the decade with some of his most ambitious works to date, proving that perhaps Streten is a once-in-a-generation talent whose mind and scope of capabilities as a producer largely overshadows electronic dance music’s confines.

He’s the father of future bass, a genre that’s captivated the masses in the latter part of the decade, formulating his own sound that’s gone on to be duplicated innumerable times since his emergence. All the while, he managed to work with an incredible cast of collaborators that includes Beck, Lorde, AlunaGeorge, Raekwon, Vic Mensa, Vince Staples, Andrew Wyatt, and SOHPIE. Flume’s dance between brash experimentalism and forward-thinking that still incorporates massive mainstream appeal make him an easy contender for Artist of the Decade.

05. Porter Robinson –

It isn’t too farfetched to postulate that by the end of his career, Porter Robinson will have been one of the most influential dance artists of all time. In his first decade as an electronic music superstar, the North Carolina-born Robinson went from wide-eyed bedroom producer with a serious anime fascination and an ear for how 8-bit video game music could inspire an entire generation of kids to one of the most brilliant minds electronic music has ever seen. That’s to say nothing of his Grammy-nominated side project Virtual Self.

But the metamorphosis from the 19-year-old that made complextro hits like “Language” to the forward-thinker than brought us his opus on the emotional, conceptual Worlds two years later was one of deep introspection. With a throttling ascent to DJ stardom alongside ZEDD and Skrillex on the first Mothership Tour came a halting realization of EDM’s confines, and only after breaking down that barrier for himself was Robinson able to emerge even more focused and driven on making something that matters. Five years after Worlds, there’s no doubt it was one of the most important albums of the last ten years, cementing Porter Robinson’s place among the top DJs of the decade.

04. Avicii –

For better or worse, 2010 – 2019’s most memorable moments can be quantified by the moves of the late, great Avicii. His name was synonymous with dance music’s light speed rise to popularity over the last ten years. From the global ubiquity of “Levels” to his tragic death on April 20, 2018 with so many moments both bright and interminably dark in between, Avicii simply defined electronic dance music. There isn’t much to say about Tim Bergling’s legacy that hasn’t been said over the last year and a half since his passing, but suffice it to say that dance music would not be where it is today without the “Wake Me Up” producer. Moreover, wherever it winds up being 10 years from now will surely bear the mark of his influence too. Rest in peace, Avicii.

Dancing Astronaut’s BIG 100—Top 25 Artists of the DecadeAvicii True Stories Documentary Limited Theatrical Run
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03. Deadmau5 –

Think about dance music like a family tree for a moment. Picture the deadmau5 family tree, so to speak, over the course of this last decade. It starts with Skrillex just before “Scary Monsters” and runs all the way down to current torch carriers like REZZ and the next generation of dance minds like Rinzen. Then think about the branches of that tree—who else came as a result of Skrillex, REZZ, and others going on to stardom? deadmau5’s impact in dance music is simply inescapable. Since the release of his Grammy-nominated 4×4=12 in December of 2010, the Mau5 has spent the decade pushing the technological boundaries of music creation and performance forward. All while beefing with Disney, scoring films for Netflix, scooping up four Grammy and six Juno nods, successfully running one of the greatest labels in dance music, and in his free time adopting the power of live streaming to give fans an intimate inside look at his processes. Today’s global dance music industry has been undoubtedly shaped for better or worse by Joel Zimmerman, making him a shoe-in for one of the top artists of the decade.

02. Diplo –

To adequately cover Diplo’s contribution to the culture over this last decade would take a dissertation. Love him or hate him, Diplo has soundtracked the decade—there’s no two ways about it. From Major Lazer to Jack Ü, with LSD, Silk City, and not one but two successful solo projects in tow, to say Wesley Pentz is the busiest man in music would be a pitiful understatement. And that would be to say nothing of launching three successful labels in the last decade. He’s brought sounds from all over the world to the masses, from the Afro-Caribbean to country western, while still managing to proctor some of the most consumed pieces of media in human history on the mainstream front. From Beyoncé to the NFL, one can’t open their cell phone or turn on the television today without being more than two degrees of separation from something Diplo is up to. Yet somehow, the next decade is likely to promise even more from Blondre 3000, and we can’t wait to see it materialize.

Dancing Astronaut’s BIG 100—Top 25 Artists of the DecadeRPE L SC Diplo 0430.dk .01 1

01. Skrillex

This may have been the easiest placing on this list. There simply wouldn’t be a decade in dance music to talk about without Skrillex. The Recess producer’s trajectory to the top of electronic music, and thereafter, is really reflective of dance music’s global expansion over the course of the decade, isn’t it? The parallels between the two journeys are clear, but the examination of their intersections proves unequivocally how instrumental Skrillex was in transforming dance music to the global enterprise it is today. Sold out Mothership tours, scoring for Disney, working alongside Mariah Carey, FKA Twigs, Rick Ross, Chance The Rapper, Kelsey Lu, Justin Bieber, and so many more in between, the sum of Skrillex’s work over the last ten years far outweighs the individual parts, of which there are too many to count. He went from stage-diving dubstep kid, proctoring the most aggressive sounds American audiences had ever heard, to esteemed dance music producer, successfully running a label that for most of the decade promised electronic music’s fiercest works. Then somehow, without a shift in momentum, Moore took his stardom to the top of the pops, all while maintaining a humility that has forced us to change our collective notion of celebrity.

But for a screamed-out punk from LA just trying to find his next creative outlet to transform into the undisputed king of popular music has been a remarkable journey to watch, cover, and enjoy. And yet somehow, the closing of the decade only seems to mark the end of the foreword in Skrillex’s book.

Dancing Astronaut’s BIG 100—Top 25 Artists of the DecadeSkrille New Press Pic Credit

NMF Roundup: Four Tet remixes ‘Midnight Hour,’ Dillon Francis flips Maroon 5 + more

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NMF Roundup: Four Tet remixes ‘Midnight Hour,’ Dillon Francis flips Maroon 5 + moreFour Tet Photo Credit DAN WILTON

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.

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.

Photo credit: Dan Wilton

mau5trap releases ‘we are friends vol. 9’ with new looks from deadmau5 and C.H.A.Y.

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mau5trap releases ‘we are friends vol. 9’ with new looks from deadmau5 and C.H.A.Y.Deadmau5 2019 1

The ninth installment of mau5trap’s annual we are friends compilation hits the streets Dec. 13, giving fans of the label’s production-heavy sound a smattering of 23 tracks to spin this holiday season.

First and foremost on the release (both figuratively and literally) is a refreshing new take from the deadmau5 himself in “ASEED,” a tune that starts somber and evolves into a symphony of acid synths and broken beats. The man behind the mask has been dropping the track for the better part of two years, making “ASEED” one of those elusive IDs that diehards have fawned over for years.

We are friends vol. 9 goes on to feature some of mau5trap’s finest homegrown and up-and-coming talent, next highlighting the whimsy-filled soundscape of ASHE with the sputtering melody of “Human.” One area that mau5trap has been highly successful in over the years is in defining its own sound as a label. WAF 9 drives this point home, with tracks like “Magmagat” by Egomorph, which acts as the eccentric cousin to deadmau5’s 2009er “FML,” sharing strands of pulsating bass DNA with the iconic song from the label boss’ For Lack of a Better Name.

Additional highlights on the release include Corvad’s bass-forward and careening “I Am Control,” with a vocal sample reminiscent of Adam Freeland’s “We Want Your Soul” and “Wanted,” a deep-electro collaboration between the ever-rising C.H.A.Y. and Monstergetdown.

We are friends vol. 9 is available now for both stream and purchase.

Photo credit: Matt Barnes

Three years later, k?d drops second remix of Daft Punk’s ‘Doin It Right’ [Stream]

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Three years later, k?d drops second remix of Daft Punk’s ‘Doin It Right’ [Stream]Kid Noctural

Miami’s Patrick Cybulski—better known by his stage name, k?d—has been touring the globe in 2019, with stops in Germany, China, Spain, and more. While showcasing live talent is important, a strict tour schedule can cause a slight halt on the new music front. However, k?d wanted to give fans something special to finish out the year, and what better way to do so than alluding to his humble beginnings as a sharp remixer?

Three years ago, k?d was dropping SoundCloud remixes of Hayley Kiyoko, GTA, and more, leading to a euphoric, synth-heavy take on Daft Punk‘s beloved “Doin It Right” from their album Random Access Memories. Racking up over three million streams to date, the iconic remix is credited for jump-starting his career, ultimately leading to a “V2” to celebrate his growth.

k?d’s “V2” remix has been a staple in his live sets as of late, so fans must be relieved to see it finally come to light, as the young producer puts a groovier, funk-based take on this one, more in sync with Daft Punk’s original work. However, each climax is a new treat, with some chillwave electronics on the first break and deep craziness on the second.

k?d recently supported deadmau5 on his “Cube V3 Tour” in Minnesota and is expected to release his debut album Cage Script sometime in 2020.

Dancing Astronaut’s Top Tracks of 2019

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Dancing Astronaut’s Top Tracks of 2019Madeon Top Tracks Eoy 2019

2019 has been a remarkable year for new music.

The past twelve months brought with them a collection of highly anticipated LPs: Madeon‘s Good Faith, Avicii‘s posthumous Tim, Gesaffelstein‘s Hyperion, Illenium‘s ASCEND, along with a Flume mixtape. Notable collaborations like REZZ and Malaa‘s “Criminals,” Seven Lions, Wooli, Trivecta, and Nevve‘s “Island,” and GRiZ and Subtronics‘ “Griztronics” hit the airwaves in blazes of glory. Supergroups like Dog Blood (Skrillex and Boys Noize) and Get Real (Claude VonStroke and Green Velvet) showcased the power of doubling up on brainpower. And, of course, countless singles had us hitting repeat more times than were calculable: Dillon Francis‘ “Still Not Butter,” i_o‘s “House of God,” Habstrakt‘s “De la Street,” Alesso‘s “Progresso,” and so many more.

In no particular order, we present a 30-track collection of our favorite songs of the year, chosen by DA writers and editors.