Within the macro tradition that is year-end list season, we at Stereogum have carved out our own micro tradition: Every December, instead of publishing a staff list of the year’s best tracks, we present a bunch of personally selected top-10 lists from our staffers and contributors. So although our rundown of 2019’s best … More »
After a huge year of bringing hard-hitting techno sounds to a wider audience, i_o—real name Garret Lockhart—is closing out 2019 in fine style. He just released ACID 444, a four-tracker which will serve as the first part of his upcoming three-part album series entitled 444.
As the title suggests, all four of the tracks harbor the unmistakable wonky sound of the 303 that carved out an entire genre. Being a mau5trap release though, the symphonic influences of deadmau5 and i_o’s mix of throbbing and groovy sounds all fit together like a dance music jigsaw puzzle.
Details surrounding the other two parts of i_o’s three-part album have yet to surface but given his reputation for ambition and innovation, the smart money says to expect more trendsetting four-on-the-floor beats.
Grimes, Canada’s queen of elaborate concept projects and sonic thought experiments, has materialized for another unearthly release, the two-sided “So Heavy I Fell Through the Earth.” The multi-talented icon of all things eternally odd has delivered two renditions of the song, a radio-intended cut, or Algorithm Mix, as well as an extended Art Mix. She’s also set a date, February 21, 2020, for her forthcoming LP, Miss_Anthropocene, which she’s said will lean heavily on climate change-adjacent themes, from the perspective of… wait for it, a misanthropic demon. The 10-track album is expected to be a stark departure from its 2015 predecessor, Art Angels, which was riddled with frothy, often disjointed pop singles and to which Grimes now refers as “a piece of crap,” and a “stain” on her life.
The song’s cosmically odd appeal harkens back to her Visions era. The ethereal downtempo production wistfully jaunts beneath Grimes’ signature moody, high-pitched croons. It’s the second single from the impending album, preceded by the equally astral and thematically weighty “Violence,” produced by smoldering mau5trap talent, i_o.
“So Heavy” arrives alongside an environmentally despondent visualizer: a foreboding portrait of Earth some years from now, scorching and uninhabitable, from the vantage point of outer space, where Grimes is engaged in a sword fight with a dragon. Armored literally and aurally, Grimes is a valiant envoy to usher us all towards our fiery ends.
Igloofest makes its imprint on the international music festival scene with its signature, trademark characteristic—embracing the arctic climate known as Canadian winters. The Montréal-based festival has just announced its 2020 season lineup, amassing a proudly diverse selection of male and female artists to top each of the four weekends of its outdoor winter series.
For its upcoming 14th edition, Igloofest welcomes a new slate of headliners over each weekend, held from Jan. 16 – Feb. 8, 2020. The opening weekend kicks off performances from headliners THE BLAZE, ANNA, Reinier Zonneveld, and curated stage takeover from Anjunabeats—with a lineup to be announced. Over the remaining three weekends, the festival’s headliners include REZZ, Nina Kraviz, RÜFÜS DU SOL, ZEDS DEAD, and Charlotte De Witte to close out each chilly night of the series.
Among the headlining performances, Igloofest welcomes an abundance of varied local and international support from artists like i_o, VNSSA, Jeremy Olander, Honey Soundsystem, Robert Hood, and many others. Held in the charismatic grounds of the city’s Old Port, the festival will debut a redesigned layout to increase their capacity, filled with handfuls of activities, treats and vendors within the magical Igloovillage and increased heated IGLOOVIP areas.
Tickets and more information on Igloofest can be found online here.
Photo credit: Charles Prot Photography
Headliners, EDC Orlando 2019 is officially less than a week away and that means it is time to officially prepare your setlist schedule. Set times were released a few days ago, so you can freely choose which artist you want to see and what times they are scheduled to perform. If you didn’t already know,
The cat’s out of the bag: mau5trap’s new day of the deadmau5 mix is here to slay.
Mixed by deadmau5 himself, the hour-long Halloween treat highlights some of the talent that’s fleshed out mau5trap’s menacing bass-forward sound over the past 16 months. Let’s be honest though—it wouldn’t be a deadmau5 Halloween mix without “Ghosts N’ Stuff,” but day of deadmau5 is largely a coming-out party for some of the label’s upcoming acts. The result is a mix that covers the majority of the current dance music spectrum, diving headfirst into the mosh pit with tracks from Callie Reiff and Getter, while sprinkling a bit of techno dust onto the mix with a handful of tracks from i_o, who is proving to be less a flavor of the week and more a flavor of the year with his constant stream of techno-infused heat.
day of the deadmau5 mix is now available now through Apple Music, for those daring to get their spook on.
Ink Events has announced the return of Solaris Music Festival to Toronto for the 2019 holiday season. Dubbed as “Toronto’s largest winter music festival,” the festival’s reincarnation came as a pleasant surprise to the to previous festival-goers after a brief one-year hiatus. Held over Dec. 26-27, Solaris locks in deadmau5 and Above & Beyond as headliners for the indoor event held at REBEL Nightclub.
In addition to the daily headliners, Solaris has announced a solidifying trail of support from routine visitors Seven Lions, i_o, and Borgore, and tops the bill with a mau5trap stage takeover in the nightclub’s NOIR room. Since its first iteration in 2012, the two-day festival has undergone a handful of changes to support the shifting music trends in Toronto.
After skipping his annual traditionary VELD Festival after party set due to touring commitments and a standalone performance in nearby city London, Ontario, deadmau5’s return to the leviathan nightclub is one of high anticipation across the city. In addition to his performance, he invites label mates No Mana, Qrion, Bentley Dean and Nofone for the party.
GA and VIP tickets are available for purchase; for more information and details about the event, head here.
Photo credit: Visualbass Photography
For the second year, Seismic Dance Event makes its return to Austin, Texas to bless attendees with two days of world-class performances. In September 2018, the inaugural event brought a stellar lineup to the Travis County Exposition Center, including Lane 8, Drezo, Golf Clap, Green Velvet, Sacha Robotti, and more.
In 2019, festival organizers look to build on last year’s success by bringing in headliners Cirez D and TESTPILOT, along with a piping hot array of other artists like Bicep, Idris Elba, Nic Fanciulli, Gorgon City, Nora En Pure, and more.
Now, the festival has revealed its daily lineups, featuring deadmau5’s TESTPILOT alias topping day one and Eric Prydz’s Cirez D moniker at the top of day two at The Statesman. Saturday, Nov. 16 will also feature acts like Chris Lake, i_o, and Rinzen, and Sunday, Nov. 17 will bring performances from Lee Burridge, Gorgon City, Dom Dolla and many more. Along from the dynamic lineup, the festival will also feature live painting and art installations, live performers, totem, and costume contests.
“We couldn’t be more pleased with the glowing feedback from our debut year and now with this year’s lineup,” said RealMusic Events & Seismic co-founders Kelly Gray & Andrew Parsons. “Many US festivals tend to have very similar lineups so we really wanted to switch it up and cater to the more seasoned, underground connoisseur – and yes, believe it, in Texas.”
View the full lineup below and get tickets here.
Photo credit: Seismic Dance Event
Canadian dance-pop wunderkind Grimes just added another rung in her sky-high ladder of talent: film directing. For her latest single, “Violence,” which she co-wrote with the steadily ascending techno whiz, i_o, Grimes directed the music video herself.
Opening on an image of her reading the legendary manuscript of Sun Tzu, The Art of War, Grimes expertly combines the themes of dance and violence with weapon-based choreography and a techno backdrop perfectly fit for the accompanying visuals. Her eye is clearly becoming equally adept compared to her ears and voice.
Grimes told Beats 1 that her next album is both finished and could be described as “techno-pop.” This will be her first album since 2015’s Art Angels. In that same interview, she also spoke about her collaboration with i_o on “Violence.”
“I hit i_o up and we made this song up in an hour,” she said in the interview. “And then I was just like, ‘This must go on the album because it just feels good.’ And, you know what, you know what? It’s just fresh. We just made this song a few months ago and I just needed to have something which felt fresh. It just felt… You know when you write a song so fast, it just feels perfect. It was like one of those. So I was like, ‘Let’s just throw it on.’ I want to shoot a music video for something that I haven’t listened to a thousand times. “
Photo credit: Eli Russell Linnetz