Montréal emblazons their incomparable fiery spirit at Igloofest, the self-proclaimed world’s coldest music festival

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Montréal emblazons their incomparable fiery spirit at Igloofest, the self-proclaimed world’s coldest music festivalIGLOO19 20190118 CHARLES PROT 059 1

What does it take to convince thousands of attendees to venture out in bone-chilling, glacial temperatures, bearing umpteen layers of clothing to join thousands of like-minded individuals in an outdoor winter dance party? Citizens of Montréal will scoff at the question, put on their winter attire and head out their door with a sense of pride and voracity, not looking behind. What may seem like a challenge and an instant rejection for some, this city says otherwise.

Illuminating the quaint and charismatic Old Port neighborhood for their 13th edition is the infrastructure of Igloofest Montréal, the self-proclaimed, “coldest music festival in the world.” Shipping containers artfully adorn their way into the festival’s framework, paying homage to the nature of the location whilst introducing a notion of industrial comfort to the ambiance. Attendees flock gracefully in packs, a true talent due to the limitations of wearing multiple layers. Dressed with poise in the brightest of colors, Igloofest hasn’t just thrown a festival, but instead fostered their own winter movement.

“It comes with the vibe, no one comes to Igloofest to be posers or just attend because it’s not worth just to be standing there when it’s -15 and you’re gonna die. Everyone’s in a good spirit, and everyone’s having fun” – Robert Robert

The 2019 edition of Igloofest Montréal spanned the course of three weekends, with the opening night hosted on the evening January 17, followed by the closing ceremonies on February 2. For the first time in Igloofest history, the outdoor festival sold out two separate nights ahead of their annual opening ceremonies, headlined by electronic mass moguls Diplo, and Above & Beyond. During the opening weekend, temperatures dropped to an astonishing low of -31 degrees Celsius, enough to freeze the Sapporo cans in the hands of attendees, but not enough to keep guests from dancing. Held over the course of nine evenings, local and international talent was far from few, welcoming headliners from each end of the electronic music spectrum. Akin to the city’s open-minded musical interests, headliners of the house, techno, trap and trance realms took the stage, attired in their own brightly flashing jackets and signature Canadian tuques.  

Montréal emblazons their incomparable fiery spirit at Igloofest, the self-proclaimed world’s coldest music festivalIgloofest Programming 2019

Igloofest first came to fruition in the winter of 2007, yielding a mere 4000 attendees for their first edition of the festival. With years of cultivation underway, the winter event series has imprinted their existence into a principle component of the city’s winter lifestyle. Each year, artists from all corners of the world are continually shocked at the frigid temperatures that encapsulate the event, yet are met with the warm reception from thousands of attendees flashing their smiles, unbothered by the elements working against them. As their recent edition year has accrued almost 65,000 fervent attendees over three weekends, it bears the question, “How has Igloofest succeeded in attracting people to come party in extreme polar temperatures?”

Nymra & Sofisticated speak to the lively spirit behind Quebec’s festival culture, referring to the “joie de vivre”, or zest for life, that makes Igloofest special. 

Familiar to the Montréal electronic music scene are female duo and Igloofest second-time performers Nymra & Sofisticated, though their fondness of the event runs deeper than their performance history. When asked about their most memorable experience from the festival, the two named Pascale and Sophie speak with unfaltering enthusiasm, drawing energy from each other as they recount their past, “During one of the coldest Igloofest’s, it was like -40 and was cold as hell. We’re playing in the dome, there was a lineup to come in, and it was a huge party. It was perfect because we’re playing all night like six hours in the dome…people were dancing on the bar, the vibe was wow.” Fresh off the raw adrenaline of opening the secondary Videotron stage, it’s clear that this festival occupies a soft spot in their hearts.

Montréal emblazons their incomparable fiery spirit at Igloofest, the self-proclaimed world’s coldest music festivalIGLOO19 0118 SYLVAIN GRANIER 0098 1

Montréalers aren’t unfamiliar to the blustery, sub-zero conditions that can characterize their winter. In fact, the temperature itself has become a pawn in an unspoken challenge of ‘who can one-up each other in partying the hardest’. The chill seems to bring out the crowd’s cheeky antics, composed of individuals dressed in astronaut helmets and spacesuits and matching the weekly #Iglooswag theme, “Space Odyssey”. Co-founder of Igloofest and seasoned festival maven Nicolas Cournoyer boasts about the pleasure of witnessing the festival’s impact on Montréal’s music scene, though it wasn’t apparent overnight. Reflecting back on the process of conceptualizing an outdoor winter festival, he says “At first we laughed about it and thought it’s not a good idea, but the afterthought was, ‘why not?’Apart from family events, there’s no events for youngsters, for people who like electronic music and nothing outside…We thought, give them a good reason to go outside, and what’s the best reason? Throw a party! That was our challenge at first because we didn’t know if people would jump in the idea. Once we started, we knew we had something because there was no competition, nothing to compare to Igloofest.”

Montréal emblazons their incomparable fiery spirit at Igloofest, the self-proclaimed world’s coldest music festivalIGLOO19 0118 SYLVAIN GRANIER 0030 2

Referring to the usage of the shipping containers as a staple addition to the festival’s aesthetic, he continues, “It was special to have that warehouse feeling, to be in a rave but outside with your winter jacket, tuque in -10, -20 degrees Celsius. It’s not only about the music and going to see a show, you go there for the DJ and music. The scenography is really important for us to be in an immersive experience, but the fact that we’re in winter levels up everything, because you can really feel it. You can feel the ambiance between the people when it’s cold and everyone’s packed together.”

Complete with testimony from Tony McGuinness, one of the three faces behind Above & Beyond, he states “Igloofest is like Burning Man in the snow, unique and totally life affirming.” Arctic temperatures be damned, as festival-goers triumph through with nothing less than unadulterated joy painted across their face. The succession of the 13th edition has affirmed if not many, but one outstanding assertion- Igloofest has cultivated and upholds a burgeoning festival scene unparalleled to any other in the world. 

Photo credits: Charles Prot and Sylvain Granier

Justice, Diplo and Mura Masa Bring Home Grammy Awards In Dance/Electronic Category

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The 2019 Grammy Awards took place tonight. While this year, the academy made waves in the dance music community for nominating some unexpected but entirely deserving artists and songs, in the end, the industry mainstays took home the awards. Best Remix – Mura Masa Mura Masa, who picked up a nomination for Dance/Electronic album of

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NMF Roundup: Medasin returns with ‘Mr. Skitters,’ i_o teams up with Tommy Trash, Feed Me releases first single from new album + more

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NMF Roundup: Medasin returns with ‘Mr. Skitters,’ i_o teams up with Tommy Trash, Feed Me releases first single from new album + moreStatement Festival Annika Berglund

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.

Above & Beyond kick off New Music Friday in fine fashion with their new single, “Distorted Truth.” Tommy Trash and i_o unleash their much-anticipated collaboration, “Let Me Go,” and Medasin returns with his first original of 2019, “Mr. Skitters.” Diplo and Octavian make an impeccable team on “New Shapes,” as do Feed Me and Rosie Doonan on “Feel Love.” Hardwell and Dannic unveil “Chase The Sun,” and Au5 rounds out his two-track Energize EP with “Activate.” The Chainsmokers bring another pop-inspired number via “Who Do You Love” with 5 Seconds of Summer, and David Guetta, Brooks, and Loote gear up for festival season with “Better When You’re Gone.” Quintino can’t be brought down in his new single, and Pixel Terror return to Monstercat with “Ultima.” Tisoki delivers a fresh remix of Party Favor‘s “Blame,” and Jay Hardway takes off into the atmosphere with “Aliens.” R3HAB joins forces with Icona Pop for “This Is How We Party,” and Darude and Sebastian Rejman craft a euphoric dance number in “Release Me.”

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: Annika Berglund

Diplo and Octavian team up for new chilled-out track ‘New Shapes’

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Diplo and Octavian team up for new chilled-out track ‘New Shapes’Diplo Mon MVMT18 Bryan Mitchell 199

From his 2018 collaboration with the rising afrobeat artist Burna Boy to his earliest Major Lazer work, Diplo‘s penchant for finding emerging international talent is no secret. Continuing this trend, the superstar DJ and producer has just released “New Shapes,” a track featuring the UK-based hip hop artist, Octavian.

Working with Mura Masa and receiving a remix from Ross From Friends in 2018, Octavian is no stranger to working alongside electronic production. He brings his subdued bars to a chilled out beat, with intricate yet subtle percussion encasing the chorus. A heartfelt offering from the two artists, the airy vibe is a departure from both of their signature styles. His second international collaboration this year, Diplo’s pursuit of artists from across the pond shows no sign of stopping any time soon.

Diplo’s Mad Decent inks new joint venture with Big Deal Music Group

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Diplo’s Mad Decent inks new joint venture with Big Deal Music GroupBig Deal Mad Decent Diplo 2019 Billboard 1548

Diplo‘s Mad Decent signed a joint venture deal with independent imprint Big Deal Music Publishing company. Under the terms of agreement, Big Deal will administer songs for Mad Decent while the two companies will sign new talent together.

Mad Decent was started by Diplo alongside his manager and business partner, Kevin Kusatsu, in 2006. The label has grown into a tightly curated culture center for some of the hottest up-and-coming acts and writers in electronic music, eventually expanding into the events space with the beloved Mad Decent Block Party circuit. Most recently, Mad Decent signed the Picard Brothers’ who have publishing credits on Mark Ronson‘s recent Miley Cyrus-assisted hit, “Nothing Breaks Like a Heart.”

Big Deal Music was founded in 2012, specializing in new talent and is administered by BMG and Peermusic. Kusatsu told Billboard in a statement, “Partnering with Big Deal gives us the best environment to be effective publishers and A&R people.”

Via: Billboard

Featured Image: John Vlautin

Damian Lazarus’ Get Lost boasts 60+ artist billing with Diplo, Claude VonStroke, DJ Tennis, Tiga, Felix Da Housecat, & many more

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Damian Lazarus’ Get Lost boasts 60+ artist billing with Diplo, Claude VonStroke, DJ Tennis, Tiga, Felix Da Housecat, & many moreHNKC 180323 GETLOST Miami2018 0478

Get Lost Miami has become a flagship stop of Damian Lazarus‘ legendary party series of the same name. Having made its first foray in the Florida hotspot fourteen years ago, the now-24-hour party has become one of the most anticipated of Miami Music Week. Guests lose themselves amid specially curated zones throughout the affair, and immersive décor that further amplifies the psychedelic atmosphere.

This year the event has really pulled out all the stops, with over 60 performers slated for this week’s show including the bossman himself Damian Lazarus, Claude VonStroke, the Desert Hearts crew, Tiga, Felix Da Housecat, and multitudes of other house greats. A few techno powerplayers will also be making appearances this year, like Chris Liebing and Ae:ther.

Perhaps the most standout name of the bunch, however, is none other than Diplo—a rather unexpected addition to what’s generally considered an underground event. He’s reportedly cooking up an especially deep set for the occasion, and will be playing entirely house and techno during his time slot. A far cry from his usual antics, but as we’ve learned from his Burning Man surprises, it seems he has a soft spot for these sounds deep down.

Opening honors will be held by Wizardry, a collaborative act made of Damian, DJ Tennis, and DJ Three. Purchase ticket to the gathering, held on March 30, here.

 

Damian Lazarus’ Get Lost boasts 60+ artist billing with Diplo, Claude VonStroke, DJ Tennis, Tiga, Felix Da Housecat, & many moreGetLost2019 MasterLongLineUpSmall

Photo Credit: Khris Cowley/Here&Now

Skrillex, Alesso, and more headed to 2019’s Indy 500 Snakepit

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Skrillex, Alesso, and more headed to 2019’s Indy 500 Snakepit50914605 10156056671668202 6042926420336836608 O

Hundreds of thousands of people have gathered at Indianapolis Motor Speedway to watch fast cars since the Indy 500 began in 1911. Historically, the event is one of America’s most popular sporting events and, over the past few years, dance music has become an essential part of the experience. On Memorial Day Weekend 2019, the 500-mile race will see performances by Skrillex, Alesso, Illenium, and Chris Lake in the Indy 500 Snake Pit presented by Coors Light.

The Snake Pit is located in the center oval of Indianapolis Motor Speedway and, eventually, turns into a full-blown music festival surrounded by speeding race cars. According to their website, “The sounds begin early on Race Day morning and are eventually joined by the roar of 33 race cars in ‘The Greatest Spectacle in Racing,’ creating an unforgettable scene.” 2018’s installment saw performances by Diplo, Deadmau5, Axwell / Ingrosso, and more, proving that these Snake Pit lineups don’t mess around. Watch the 2018 recap video below:

The Indy 500 Snake Pit 2019 takes place on Sunday, May 26. Head to their website for tickets and check out the promo video here.

 

Sunday Morning Medicine Vol 163, featuring LSD, STS9, Explosions In The Sky, + more

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Sunday Morning Medicine Vol 163, featuring LSD, STS9, Explosions In The Sky, + moreSMM 2400

Sunday Morning Medicine is a feature from Dancing Astronaut dedicated to the mellower side of electronic music. We bring you our therapeutic selections—old and new—in attempts to alleviate the agonizing effects of a long weekend of partying.

The 1975’s broody synth-pop ballad, “Somebody Else” uncorks this week’s Sunday sonic tonic. Lay back as the track funnels forgotten feelings of bygone lovers through its musing ’80s synth line alongside Matty Healy’s deceivingly disenchanted crooning.

Through the frigid throes of winter, RÜFÜS DU SOL’s “Innerbloom” remains a grudge-thawing winter remedy, with its warm, furrowing progressions and fluid percussion, that rushes over the listener like long-sought-after weekend penance.

It’s too easy to get lost inside Sound Tribe’s fluttering instrumentals and glitchy, hip-hop beat. The cosmically funky track’s wistful piano and swirling strings are enough to dissolve any and all dizzying Sunday disarray.

“Your Hand In Mine” gives listeners the feeling that their love can quite literally move mountains. Explosions In The Sky’s momentous orchestral crescendos and soaring guitar strums help listeners hark the track’s respective album title: The Earth Is Not A Cold Dead Place, which, this Sunday, it might feel like.

Diplo’s multitalented triad of talent, LSD (Labrinth, Sia, Diplo) queue up their mellifluous wedding of pop and dance music with “Audio,” to close out the list this week. A redemptive track to its core, “Audio” is your sonic segue to conquering whatever’s on the Sunday agenda.

Poppy ft. Diplo – Time Is Up (DJ Politik Remix)

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DJ Politik flips “Time Is Up” originally by Poppy ft. Diplo completely on it’s ass into a whole new soundscape. He’s dropped a handful of other pretty epic remixes that are well worth looking into, but this one has to be my favorite work by the up and coming act to date. I had honestly

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Diplo announces new EP, ‘Europa,’ with new French hip-hop single and music video, ‘Boom Bye Bye,’ featuring Niska [WATCH]

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Diplo announces new EP, ‘Europa,’ with new French hip-hop single and music video, ‘Boom Bye Bye,’ featuring Niska [WATCH]Diplopress

Diplo released a French hip-hop single and music video, “Boom Bye Bye,” with rapper Niska from the Parisian suburbs. This is the first single off the A-list producer’s forthcoming “prequel” EP to last year’s California, Europa, adding to his locally focused extended play projects.

“Boom Bye Bye” caresses listeners with lush keys and hardened percussion over a flowing French verse of hip-hop and singing. The catchy hook hits with soft, trap horns and dissident wide-ranging vocals on a loop. The Mad Decent label boss mentioned to Complex last year that he wanted to work with a new generation of hip-hop in pursuit of his new developing projects which also includes Silk City with Mark Ronson and LSD with Sia and Labrinth. This unfortunately means a disbandment of his decade-long dancehall project, Major Lazer, although if this is a peek into what Diplo looks to work towards, there is still a lot of the world for Thomas Wesley Pentz Jr. to bring to the mainstream.