Hardwell talks performance prep, Tomorrowland, and his plans for 2018 [Q&A]

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At this point, Hardwell is virtually a household name. With millions of fans and no shortage of global airtime, the producer has leveraged his niche in this industry into a full fledged cult of personality. From his flagship charity concert to his United Nations initiatives to his perfume line (seriously), the producer does it all.

The superstar also, of course, finds time to make music.

At the end of any given festival weekend, the king of bigroom is always among the conversation of the top performances — he has long been known to melt the mainstage crowd with his unbelievably high energy sets that keep hands up high for hours. Loaded with some of the most massive IDs of the summer and edits that have fans’ mouths agape in awe, Hardwell’s performances seem to somehow take it up a notch each and every year.

Considering the producer’s unique status as a festival mainstay and EDM icon, we spoke with Hardwell about how he preps and what’s up next.

 


 

Your festival sets are always one of the most highly anticipated events of the EDM calendar year. How do you go about your preparation for these big shows and determining your tracklists?

The biggest struggle for me is to finish up the collabs and solo tracks just in time. I’m always changing up my intro so I have to prepare that as well and come up with new edits and mashups. I prepare these sets for months in advance.

You are finally returning to Tomorrowland this year after a few years of not playing. How did that come about and did your reunion with Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike play any sort of role in your comeback?

Tomorrowland didn’t book me for a couple years after the small Twitter thing. We’re all good though and I’m really excited to be back at Tomorrowland. I also have that collab now with Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike. There’s no name for the song though and it’s not even finished yet, we just premiered it at their show.

Since last summer you dropped 3 EPs, what are your plans for 2018? Are you looking to make a follow up album or to just continue to release more EPs and singles?

I’m not really into an album anymore. I don’t think it’s really relevant for an EDM artists to actually release an album but today during my set you can expect a couple of songs from the Hardwell & Friends EP, Vol. 4. Some great collabs and not even with upcoming guys but bigger guys plus a couple of solo tracks and the new intro obviously. I’m really proud of my closing track too, which is a new hardstyle collab with Wildstylez.

Who is one person that you would love to collab with this year that you haven’t in the past?

If I had to pick one person, my dream collab would definitely be Pharrell Williams. I admire him as a producer, as a person and as a singer/songwriter. Everything he does, I am just a really big fan of him.

How do you feel about the current EDM and pop crossover that’s happening with artists like Zedd and The Chainsmokers? Do you think it’s here to last?

With EDM, it’s getting bigger and bigger. Don’t forget that dance music was an underground movement. People always say that dance music became mainstream but it’s the other way around. The mainstream got more into dance music so it was just a matter of time before the pop culture influenced dance music and the other way around. I like it though, it creates diversity and makes it more accessible for everybody, which makes dance music more interesting. If you’re a young kid and hear a dance record on the radio, it could automatically get you into techno and that’s great for dance music. As long as there is a proper underground and a proper mainstream, they will both benefit from each other.

We know you had a massive collab with Martin Garrix that had the entire world talking. Is that officially scrapped and do you have plans to work on something in the future?

It’s always great to collaborate with an artist like Martin, he’s a fellow Dutchman and we always have great fun bouncing ideas off each other – I don’t wanna say it’s scrapped as it may see the light of day yet. You know, we’re both very busy touring with shows non-stop and our own labels but we have a lot of creative fun together. We for sure hope to have something out in the future.

Who are some of your favorite upcoming producers at the moment?

SWACQ is a really cool producer from France, I played an ID of his in my ULTRA Miami set so I wonder if anyone can spot it! Harrison is a UK vocalist that I’ve also worked with before on my United We Are album and he’s producing his own music now with a future-bass kinda sound, different for him but it works – we also have a new track ‘Earthquake’ dropping together soon. Trobi is also a super-new artist who I’ve got some exciting music from in my inbox, a really fresh sound and It would be amazing to release something from him on my label Revealed, who knows!

NMF Roundup: Hardwell and Steve Aoki go hard, Cheat Codes reworks Tom Walker, Xan Griffin shreds + more

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The most important day of every week: New Music Friday. 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.


Take a serendipitous end-of-week drive with Youngr through his newest syrupy indie pop number, “Drive.”

Ulterior Motive lends the robustly voiced Thandi Phoenix’s formerly cheerful and heavily remixed “My Way” a foreboding, ominous drum & bass fervor.

EDM eminences, Hardwell and Steve Aoki, team up with Kris Kiss for, “Anthem,” a hype-heavy track that packs the punch of a high-speed bus.

Austin, Texas’ big-room virtuosos, Tritonal, have released a radiant club mix of their recent “Out Of My Mind,” featuring lustrously warm vocals from Riley Clemmons.

LA-based Paris Blohm says, “All aboard the big-room bus,” with his newest heart-pumping, fist-pump-preferred “Save Us,” featuring ENOK.

Cheat Codes breathes some progressive house heat into Tom Walker’s “Leave A Light On,” with simultaneously atmospheric and playful synths/guitar plucks and ample bass.

Nomad’s newest “The Machines” is, as the name implies, a highly tech-oriented, dizzying drum & bass depiction of “the war between machine and human.”

Xan Griffin has resolved to shred unworthy speakers to bits with his Asian-inspired, guitar-sampling trap tune, “Aries.”

The always-colorful Carmada duo has released another bounce-infused future bass beauty, featuring the velvety-voiced tribes.

Robby East wields melody and instrumentation galore in his whimsical new house track, “Burning In My Soul,” which is practically begging for a play just before a Friday night on the town.

Sullivan King pushes pedal to the metal with “Step Back,” a screeching, dubstep/electro hybrid that should be avoided by the delicately eared.

Faithful to its title, Seasoned Souls’ technicolor, piano piece, “Ripple,” flutters and flickers like an enchanted body of sweet-sounding water.

Sober rob unleashes some liquid trap for “Supermoon,” which features sweet soprano, Karra, and a heady serving of astral-themed sampling, fit to be heard under the Friday night sky.

Hardwell’s Ultra 20 set get the ‘drops only’ treatment [Watch]

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Those who want to bypass builds and just enjoy a series of nonstop drops can now seamlessly do so via a “drops only” oriented reboot of Hardwell’s Ultra 20 set.

An amalgamation of Hardwell’s early electronic classics and new IDs alike, Hardwell’s original Ultra 20 set generates a near palpable anticipation leading up to each drop, but when removed, the builds give way to a high powered procession of the EDM titan’s thunderous descents.

H/T: EDM Sauce

Insomniac fills out robust 2018 EDC week with over 25 artists and 14 new shows

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Insomniac added over 25 new artists and 14 events to the fifth annual EDC week in Las Vegas, coinciding with the festival’s 22nd annual installment. 

In doing so, the festival welcomes 14 signature party experiences during the week of May 16–23, including the hardstyle focused Basscon Pool Party and two dubstep-fueled Bassrush parties, along with a variety of diverse headliners throughout the week. New programming includes a vast array of parties across the cities hottest nightclubs, including Elephante, Porter Robinson, NGHTMRE, Gryffin, Hot Since 82, Illenium, Yellow Claw, and many more.

Full programming details, more information, and tickets are available here.

Hï Ibiza Announces Three Headliners for Massive Sunday Parties “CREAM”

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There was a lot of speculation regarding Hï Ibiza when it was announced they would be taking over in place of the World’s most renowned club “Space Ibiza” and rightfully so. Space had built a name for itself on the White Isle and throughout the world as the single place that every raver needed to

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Watch Hardwell Sing To Swedish House Mafia During Ultra 2018

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March 25, 2018 will go down in history as one of the most iconic dates in music history. As Swedish House Mafia made their return to the main stage, all eyes were on Ultra Music Festival 2018. When asked why Swedish House Mafia made their return, the group simply said that “it was time…” So

The post Watch Hardwell Sing To Swedish House Mafia During Ultra 2018 appeared first on EDM Sauce.

Daft Punk’s Return To Ultra 2018 Hype Gets Refueled By Carl Cox, Hardwell and Kungs

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While the hype for Swedish House Mafia potentially returning as this year’s surprise guest is high, many people still believe that Daft Punk is making their official return as well. To close out his set last night, Carl Cox playing Daft Punk’s “Rollin’ & Scratchin.’” The song was caught on film by a member of

The post Daft Punk’s Return To Ultra 2018 Hype Gets Refueled By Carl Cox, Hardwell and Kungs appeared first on EDM Sauce.

Hardwell Unleashes The Most Massive ID Of Ultra Day 1 (Listen)

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As we all know, Ultra Music Festival is the home of the ID. An “ID” is basically just a new song that has never been released that doesn’t have a name, hence “ID”. Well, Hardwell ROCKED the Main Stage yesterday for Day 1 of Ultra and many may agree with me – he unleashed the

The post Hardwell Unleashes The Most Massive ID Of Ultra Day 1 (Listen) appeared first on EDM Sauce.

Watch The Ultra Music Festival 2018 Live Stream

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The Ultra Live Stream for 2018 is officially in full force. So if you weren’t able to make it to Miami, Florida this year, UMFTV has you covered for the Ultra Music Festival 2018 live stream. ULTRA LIVE will live stream for more than 25 hours and all of it can be viewed right here

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Hardwell: a Swedish House Mafia reunion at Ultra ‘has to happen’ [Watch]

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Hardwell

Netherlands radio station,SLAM! recently got Hardwell on the phone to talk Miami Music Week, his upcoming Main Stage slot at Ultra Music Festival‘s opening day on Friday, March 23, and, of course, speculation that Swedish House Mafia will reconvene for a special anniversary performance.

“Most of the DJs have some free time in January and February, and that results in new music,” Hardwell said when asked if he would debut unreleased material in Ultra tradition during his headlining set. “I made lots of new music and I’m going to play [it] on Friday,” Hardwell added.

And like many ticket holders, Hardwell is holding out for an SHM reunion. “I think it’s going to happen,” Hardwell stated in response to the question as to whether he believed the Swedish super group would indeed appear at Ultra 20. “There are a lot of rumors, the deciding factor for me was that Steve Angello, one of the three members of SHM, cancelled his Asia tour out of the blue, suddenly doesn’t have any shows planned, and is now in Miami. For me, this means that it has to happen.”

Those attending Miami Music Week can peruse the best parties of the biggest week in electronic music as curated by Dancing Astronaut, here.