Alice Merton Is Ruling Rock Radio. Is A Pop Crossover Next?

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Do you remember where you first heard “Royals”? Almost any guess could be correct — and not just because the song achieved the sort of ubiquity you’d expect from a #1 hit. More »

Tycho releases dazzling 2017 SnowGlobe DJ set

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Scott Hansen’s released his Tycho DJ set from last year’s SnowGlobe festival in Lake Tahoe. The mix is a dynamic instrumental odyssey exploring Tycho’s two sonic universes: both lesser-known cuts and his own work. For an hour and a half, Hansen entwines the aforementioned realms with stand-out cuts like Bibio’s “lover’s carvings” remixed by Bruno Be & Eddie, Ikopol’s “Dauwd,” Tycho’s own “L,” and many more.

Though Hansen’s hinted that the new Tycho album may be complete, most recently on Facebook, it remains entirely unclear when the new album will arrive.

Tycho’s last album, Epoch, was released in 2016.

Bassnectar, Halsey, Arcade Fire top Okeechobee’s massive 2018 lineup

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2018’s festival circuit is already heating up, with Florida’s Okeechobee Music + Arts Festival dropping off a well-rounded lineup teeming with talent to jump start the spring season from March 1 – 4. Now, in its third year, Okeechobee is boasting perhaps its biggest lineup yet, led by Halsey, Arcade Fire, Travis Scott, with Bassnectar returning to pull double duty this year, slated for two headlining sets. Offering a more curated, hip-hop and rock inclusive alternative to Miami’s EDM festivities at Ultra around the same time, Okeechobee is bringing The Flaming Lips, Khalid, Zeds DeadGramatik and Illenium along for support among many others.

From Foster The People to Denzel Curry, Tycho to Big Gigantic, the four-day camping festival is aiming to satisfy a wide range of musical taste, along with top-notch programming including workshops, visual art installations and more. View the full lineup and purchase tickets here.


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Tycho debuts stunning Tarkovsky-inspired visuals for ‘Glider’

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Each and every artistic endeavor from Scott Hansen, known musically as the Ghostly International artist Tycho, solidifies his status as an artistic mastermind of this generation. Following this notion are the designer’s cinematically-aligned live visuals for his tune “Glider,” off 2016’s Epoch

Created as an homage to the visionary Russian filmmaker Andrei Tarkovsky — the creative force behind films such as Ivan’s Childhood, Andrei Rublev, Mirror, Stalker, and more — Hansen incorporated elements of Tarkovsky’s 1972 film Solaris into these visuals for the tune.

Tycho is now set to take these visuals on autumn tour of Europe.

Tycho Autumn Tour Dates:

19 OCT – Dublin, IE – District 8 – SOLD OUT
22 OCT – London, UK – The Roundhouse
24 OCT – Barcelona, ES – Razzmatazz 2
25 OCT – Toulouse, FR – Bikini
27 OCT – Bologna, IT – Estragon
28 OCT – Turin, IT – Movement Festival
30 OCT – Basel, CH – Kaserne
31 OCT – Zurich, CH – Plaza
01 NOV – Antwerp, BE – Trix
02 NOV – Utrecht, NL – Tivoli
04 NOV – Copenhagen, DK – DR Koncerthuset
05 NOV – Stockholm, SE – Nobelberget
09 NOV – Moscow, RU – Izvestia Hall

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Ascend to an alternate dimension with Tycho’s uber chill two-hour Burning Man sunrise set

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Each and every artistic endeavor from the San Francisco-based designer and producer Scott Hansen is an effervescent effort, each more nuanced and meticulously crafted than the artist’s previous pursual. As Tycho, Hansen’s built a curatorial empire. From carefully curated sun-drenched captures on Instagram, to his design work, let alone his renowned and spiritually renewing sets at festivals around the world, Hansen’s artistic outpouring is a celebration of minimalistic beauty at its finest. For the artist, to live to is create.

Tens of thousands of Burners poured into the Black Rock Desert this year in a celebration of art, music, creativity, and community where Tycho set forth to delve into one of his most soothing sets to date. On the fifth day of Burning Man, Aug. 31, he took The Dusty Rhino for a dreamy ride into the sunrise, gliding from one track to the next in his seemingly effortless, archetypal approach.

Tycho’s set allows its listener to ascend to an alternate dimension within its two hour playtime. While it’s filled with Hansen’s own work, including “Awake” and “Epoch,” as well as many other tracks off the LPs, Hansen seamlessly weaves chillwave outliers throughout.

Listeners can hear artists like Caribou, Kidnap Kid, or The Bamboos all weaved into a cohesive two-hour stream. It’s clear Tycho and his audience ascended to alternate spaces this burn, in a culmination of tunes like these, it’s also likely this set will live high in a register of memorable life experiences among all who experienced it.

Even Tycho went so far as to call it his, “absolute favorite morning of all time” on SoundCloud.


Sensations’ Fix – Acudreaming
Tycho – Sunrise Projector
Tycho – Ascension
Home – Resonance
Tycho – Continuum
Boards Of Canada – Kaini Industries
Dorisburg – Votiv
Rival Consoles – Ghostin
Boards Of Canada – Wildlife Analysis
Jonny L – Tychonic Cycle
Luke Abbott – Modern Driveway
George Fitzgerald – Your Two Faces
16 Bit Lolitas – Peninsula
Weval – I Don’t Need It
Kidnap Kid – Birds That Fly
Jimpster – Porchlight And Rocking Chairs (KiNK Remix)
Weval – You Made It
Tycho – Epoch
Tycho – Dye
Boards Of Canada – Corsair
<<< Sunrise (Cloud Obscured) >>>
Tycho – Awake
Home – Above All
Tycho – Horizon
<<< Sun Visible >>>
Caribou – Can’t Do Without You (Tale Of Us & Mano Le Tough Remix)
16 Bit Lolitas – Not The Only One
Robert Babicz – Where Are You (Aparde Remix)
Tycho – Slack
Joon Moon – Chess
Tycho – Daydream
The Bamboos – The Wilhelm Scream

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Tycho – “See” (Feat. Beacon)

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In 2014, the synthy New York R&B duo and 2011 vintage Band To Watch Beacon remixedSee,” a song off of Tycho’s album Awake. At Coachella this year, Beacon’s Thomas Mullarney III joined Tycho onstage to perform it live, marking the first time that the project has ever featured a vocalist. Now, … More »

See Run The Jewels, Tycho live from Primavera Sound

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Primavera Sound festival is in full swing with a packed, eclectic lineup including names like The Black Angels, Descendents, Mac DeMarco, Broken Social Scene and scores more. For those not soaking up the Barcelona sun, Red Bull in conjunction with us here at Dancing Astronaut are bringing viewers a taste of the fun.

Tune in to the Primavera Sound channel starting at 6:55 PM ET to see what is sure to be a kinetic performance from Run The Jewels. Together Killer Mike and El-P will ride the wave of a year packed with heater releases and incredible live appearances. Stay tuned after the duo’s set closes at 7:50 PM ET to see the blissfully ambient, sun drenched sounds of chillwave master Tycho.

We promise, you won’t want to miss this.

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James Blake stuns, Thundercat electrifies and Hundred Waters shine as FORM Arcosanti 2017 draws to a close

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The culmination of FORM‘s fourth installment this past weekend in the Arizona desert was a testament to the masterwork of this small, hand-powered experimental festival alternative. An incredible amount of logistical planning clearly goes into the event’s production, though FORM continues to maintain a distinguished DIY ethos, even with its impeccably curated, substantially stacked talent billing set for the final evening.

Tycho4_Maria Govea

Photo: Maria Govea

As important to FORM’s appeal as its lineup, however, is the event’s focus on artistry and open discourse outside of musical confines. The Hundred Waters-founded gathering made definitive statements this year in its commitment to purveying thought-provoking content across a number of disciplines, even inviting Planned Parenthood to make their first appearance at an art festival of this nature. Pathways to Paris, a collective of innovative activists, artists, and musicians dedicated to combating climate change also hosted a panel, ahead of the evening’s programming.

FORM’s final evening included Thundercat‘s return to the event for a second year in a row. The Brainfeeder affiliate provided one of the most entertaining performances of the weekend, filling the main amphitheater with soulful, funky bass licks from his recently released Drunk LP. Meanwhile, Tycho‘s energetic band-backed live performance fit the FORM aesthetic flawlessly.

Ultimately, the final night’s stage was set for equally brilliant back to back performances from James Blake and Hundred Waters. Blake made his solo piano performance debut, timidly, albeit masterfully holding the entire attendance in silent awe from behind the ivory and ebony keys. The British prodigy’s unaccompanied cover of Frank Ocean‘s “Godspeed” easily made for one of the weekend’s most memorable highlights, paving the way for his participation in the event’s after hours programming while DJing in his 1-800-Dinosaur cabal.

James Blake_MG_7325_Credit_Jacqueline_Verdugo

Photo: Jacqueline Verdugo

Hundred Waters kicked off the weekend with a surprise release, delivering Currency, a five-track preamble to their upcoming third studio album. In what has become a FORM tradition of sorts, the band debuted their new material live at the festival before a captivated crowd, which endowed their set with an element of fitting novelty. The group’s performance was altogether emotionally charged and cheerful all at once, with their most popular release, “Show Me Love”, invoking a lively, impassioned response from the audience.

Hundred Waters_Credit_Jasmine_Safaeian_3847-web

Photo: Jasmine Safaeian

Closing a fourth year that showcased significant growth, from TIDAL sponsorships to the largest number of participants the festival has ever hosted, FORM met expected growing pains effectively and and efficiently. In terms of talent curation, programming, and ambiance, Hundred Waters, with the help of Moses Sumney, nailed FORM’s execution with impressive poise. As a lasting memento from the event, fans can revisit this year’s lineup with a free mixtape courtesy of FORM that includes contributions from Skrillex, Father John Misty, Tycho, How To Dress well and more. Pushing the festival model forward, FORM Arcosanti continues to have a powerful impact with each growing iteration of the event.

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Listen to the best Burning Man sets of 2016

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Burning Man’s open-minded culture, mixed with the loving energy of Black Rock City, inevitably catalyzes some of the top sets of the year in the dance world.

2016 was no exception; as per usual, an immense amount of talent from across the electronic spectrum — from Skrillex, to Tycho, to Lee Burridge — showed up to provide a soundtrack to the gathering at various theme camps and art cars throughout the week.

Below are some of our highlights from Burning Man 2016 (in no particular order):

1) Lee Burridge at Robot Heart

2) Hernan Cattaneo at White Ocean

3) Luca Bacchetti at Robot Heart

4) Tycho at The Dusty Rhino

5) Guy Gerber at Robot Heart

6) Brian Cid at Robot Heart

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Dancing Astronaut’s Top 10 Performers of 2016

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In the reigning electronic music era, the term “DJ” has become extraordinarily convoluted. Many electronic artists are judged and ranked as DJs based on their production prowess, rather than their skills behind the decks. Furthermore, as music technologies continue to develop, the lines between the actual tools which electronic artists use onstage have become increasingly blurred. Many of dance music’s most important figures don’t use anything resembling turntables or CDJs during their shows.

This list celebrates the ten electronic artists that we believe provided the most evocative performances in 2016. While many of the names below have released spectacular music within the past year, the artists’ production skills were not used as criteria while compiling these rankings. Rather, the aim of this list is to highlight the acts who most formidably astounded their audiences in their concerts; the artists whose tour announcements sent a hush throughout the electronic music realm; the musicians who put on shows so spectacular that the moments they cultivated have achieved legendary status in the year’s canon.

These are Dancing Astronaut’s Top 10 Performers of 2016.


10. Skrillex

Year after year, Sonny Moore remains one of dance music’s preeminent influencers, and to his credit, one of its most energetic performers. In addition to heading up his OWSLA imprint and continually providing a platform for new talents, Skrillex held down a breakneck performance calendar in 2016. Among Skrillex’s international touring itinerary this year were noteworthy performances at ComplexCon, Chance The Rapper’s debut Magnificent Coloring Day Festival, and his Boiler Room debut in Shanghai. Moore also returned to Burning Man and Coachella, to accompany Snails.

What long-time fans may consider treasonous is actually the key ingredient to Skrillex’s ubiquity — nothing is too dissimilar from his current work to touch. He brings the same earnest and genuine energy to his performances. Dubstep fan or not, its one of the most inclusive environments in the mainstream scene.

– Lucy Davidson

bob moses live facebook

9. Bob Moses

Bob Moses hit the nail on the head with their 2015 debut album, Days Gone By, entering the dance music realm at the exact right time for the industry to welcome them with open arms. With the rise in popularity of indie-electronica crossover acts over the last few years, listeners were ready for something different, and the Canadian partnership of Tom Howie and Jimmy Vallance proved perfect to provide that difference.The duo’s multifaceted style yields a stellar live show, but impressively isn’t compromised by their DJ performances. Rather, the two divergent live formats allow Howie and Vallance to explore different facets of their tastes and talents.

2016 has seen Bob Moses play sets at some of the biggest festivals in the world, including Lollapalooza, Coachella, Bonnaroo. Howie and Vallance have also garnered mainstream attention, receiving a great wealth of airtime on BBC Radio 1 and earning the chance to perform on The Ellen Show. Conversely, the duo fit right in with house and techno legend Lee Burridge on his “All Day I Dream” tour, easily catering to the more underground side of the spectrum. With their enthralling live performance, unique combination of influences, and ubiquitous appeal, it’s glaringly apparent that Bob Moses have established a firm, yet still blossoming legacy.

Toby Reaper

Tycho live molly gale

8. Tycho

Amid the rigorous clamor that defines much of the dance music scene, there is the beautiful sound of Tycho, which continuously reaffirms the notion that there is much more to composing music than simply putting sounds together. A true artist in every aspect, Scott Hansen, the leading force behind the project, creates breathtaking, organic soundscapes wherever he goes. Whether performing at the Dusty Rhino art car for his Burning Man sunrise set, or headlining Red Rocks, Hansen’s performances are always inventive and tranquil. Tycho’s music breathes with life, brimming with meaningful depth in both its composition and its performance. Artists with such capabilities have become increasingly rare, as technological advances make production — and performance — more accessible, but arguably less personal.

– Toby Reaper


7. Claude VonStroke

Dirtybird label boss Claude VonStroke has been transitioning from an underground hero to a household name over the last decade. In 2016, a number of mainstream accolades began rolling in for the DJ as well. In September, Claude was named America’s Best DJ (via fan votes in Pioneer DJ and DJ Times’ annual poll), and his uniquely nostalgic festival, Dirtybird Campout, drew an enthusiastic international crowd for its second iteration. At Campout, the DJ performed both as himself and under his real name as his hip hop alter-ego, Barclay Crenshaw, demonstrating that his breadth as a performer is continually expanding, even at this stage in his career.

The house and techno scene is alive and well in the United States, but VonStroke possesses a unique quality among his cohorts — a sense of humor about his craft. In 2016, VonStroke stepped his game up by incorporating elements from his side projects, Get Real and Barclay Crenshaw, without losing the heart of his performance: the tangible irreverence of a Claude VonStroke set.

– Lucy Davidson

GRiZ live sax facebook

6. GRiZ

Ambitious producer, live musician, and All Good Records owner, Grant Kwiecinski, better known as GRiZ, had yet another year of exponential growth in 2016 — and for good reason. GRiZ is an innovator, and it’s easy to see that he enjoys setting the bar ever higher as he builds his style of futuristic funk into something of a movement. Kwiecinski’s world-class musicianship shines brightly at each and every show he plays, big or small. The energy at a GRiZ show is a spectacle to behold, due to his formidable skills as a saxophonist and Ableton live controller.

From his groundbreaking sold-out Red Rocks show to playing sets all over the Playa at Burning Man, GRiZ can, and will, do it all. The dedicated performer appears at practically every major festival amidst his rigorous touring schedule. Furthermore, the multi-instrumental talent never shies away from a unique collaboration, which perhaps manifested most notably this year during his Big Grizmatik set at Summer Camp, where Kwiecinski partnered with like-minded influencers Big Gigantic and Gramatik to purvey a legendary performance. GRiZ’s most astounding trait, however, is his unbreakable authenticity — both as a musician and a person — which has fostered a devoted cult following (known as “The Liberators”) that few artists can achieve.

– Toby Reaper

Pretty Lights Episodic 2

5. Pretty Lights

As a performer, Pretty Lights has constantly evolved. Following a musical reawakening in late February, Derek Vincent Smith premiered his Episodic Festival tour. In their new live performance, Smith and his band have finally achieved the perfect balance between their electronic and instrumental components. Pretty Lights has always been revered for his live edits during shows, but in 2016, he inverted his performative process entirely. In the new era of Pretty Lights, Smith implements his improvisations within Ableton impeccably with those of his bandmates.

Overall, the well-tuned musical experience provided during the Episodic Festival is the ideal marriage of Pretty Lights’ contrasting elements; the yin and yang innovate, rather than collide. Greg Ellis’ subtler lighting choices melded masterfully with Pretty Lights’ new performance. In the accompanying visual production, Ellis favored psychedelic laser displays over frenetic rave patterns and reintroduced the sepia-toned cityscapes which were definitive of Smith’s earlier tours.

To create an inimitable live experience that combines free form jam band music, calculated electronic music, and hip hop is an ambitious feat. Setting this divergent combination to an ever-changing, astounding, and harmonious visual spectacle adds a further layer of difficulty.

In 2016, Pretty Lights achieved this feat with resounding success.

– Will McCarthy

boys noize ajr photo

4. Boys Noize

Fans were unsure of what to expect when Boys Noize premiered his Mayday performance at Barcelona’s Sónar festival in June. Alex Ridha hadn’t crafted a new live experience since the haunting skull booth which accompanied his electro-heavy Out of the Black tour following his 2012 album of the same name.

In 2016, Boys Noize’s live show manifested the essence and theme of his Mayday album impeccably. Rather than revisit the sinister occultism which pervaded his Out of the Black tour, Ridha masterfully recreated the apocalyptic pandemonium which defined his fourth album. Standing behind an elaborate industrial rig, designed with towering iron bars and glaring alarm lights, Ridha wove his dystopian scores through an array of equipment complex enough to make deadmau5 uneasy.

In order to ensure that the Orwellian sensibilities of his Mayday show were properly executed, Boys Noize took a step that very few performers possess the dedication to take. While seamlessly integrating live edits into his performance, Ridha additionally controlled a significant portion of his own visual production.

As the German visionary crafted an apocalyptic masterpiece from behind his industrial imprisonment, chaotic visuals designed by Sus Boy and LIL INTERNET completed the experience, culminating in a showcase which simultaneously evoked visceral energy and airs of totalitarian oppression.

Independently, Boys Noize’s live shows of the past year were a staggering artistic feat. Given the pre-apocalyptic despair that many people are feeling as 2016 draws to a close, one might say that Alex Ridha’s most recent tour was a conceptual embodiment of the year itself.

– Will McCarthy

Eric Prydz EPIC 4.0 ftd img wm

3. Eric Prydz

Eric Prydz is a veritable juggernaut of a performer. The multi-talented, multi-monikered DJ excels onstage regardless of which identity he chooses to don for any given show. As Cirez D, he purveys a selection of techno which is harrowing and recondite, yet also energizing — often playing warehouse sets for hours on end.

However, Prydz’s shows under his given name are his crowning achievement as a performer. The veteran DJ’s live shows have become so legendary that they have spurred a revered series of their own: Eric Prydz in Concert – appropriately abbreviated as EPIC. Its 2016 edition, EPIC 4.0, is the zenith of a DJ career which spans more than a decade. Eric Prydz in concert is, funnily enough, less of a concert and more of an audio/visual journey.

The technical prowess of Eric Prydz’s EPIC stage production is unparalleled. Prydz shrouds himself within a colossal LED encasement, upon which a vibrant, ever-shifting phantasmagoria enthralls his audience. As thousands of lasers project from his inventively lit fortress, Prydz carefully selects music from his extensive oeuvre to score his inimitable sensory experience, taking spectators on a journey with his uniquely immersive visual platform.The energy of the experience undulates as the multifaceted musician shifts between segments highlighting his various alter-egos.

Each year of Eric Prydz’s storied career has been momentous, but in 2016, Prydz raised his own bar substantially as a performer and producer. Given the artist’s innovative leaps in the past year, the degree to which he’ll shake the dance music world when he premieres EPIC 5.0 in May 2017 is unfathomable.

– Will McCarthy


2. Carl Cox

Carl Cox needs no introduction — the legendary artist’s residency at Space Ibiza concluded its 15 year-run in September with an epic ten-hour, all-vinyl set. While a packed room ushered in the closing of Space, millions of viewers tuned in online to watch Cox’s dazzling final performance. The set further marked the end of a 27-year era, as Ushuaïa will take control of the site next Ibiza season, but the king of dance music isn’t hanging up his crown just yet.

Infectious energy and an ear-to-ear grin are only some of the trademark elements of a Carl Cox DJ set. Over the course of his career which spans more than three decades, Cox has become a master curator with an inexhaustible archive, and a masterful technician to boot. Simply put, there is no superior DJ anywhere, and Cox proved in 2016 that he’s not going anywhere anytime soon.

– Lucy Davidson

Madeon Porter Shelter Live Madeon Twitter

1. Porter Robinson & Madeon

“One single song, one single tour, and then it’s over.”

There’s a bittersweet beauty in the nature of transience. Diamonds are coveted for their rarity. Gesaffelstein’s announcement that his Coachella performance would be his “last live show” made its experience that more exciting. The same principle applies to the “Shelter” phenomenon.

In 2016, no other artists managed to engender widespread fervor for their live shows to the degree which Porter Robinson and Madeon did with Shelter. When Porter Robinson and Madeon abruptly partnered in the studio and onstage, both artists’ respective fan bases were ecstatic. Based upon their sudden ubiquity and undeniable compatibility, many hopefully assumed that the pair of prodigies would continue to work together extensively for years to come. 

When Robinson and Madeon announced that their dual tour would mark the end of their partnership, a sizable faction of their followers were devastated — and understandably so. However, while the retirement of their partnership is a disappointing loss, it’s important to note that its impact is inextricable from its ephemerality. Live edits from the show, such as Madeon’s revision of Robinson’s “Flicker,” are evocative not only because of their intrinsic qualities, but because they only exist within the context of the Shelter performance. Robinson and Madeon’s tour is formidable largely because it is fleeting.

The Shelter tour was simultaneously a perfect reflection of both artists’ unique live aesthetics and an expert fusion of their compositional styles. Bookended with renditions of their sole collaboration, Porter Robinson and Madeon transformed each other’s original works throughout their joint performance, both individually and in conjunction. As the pair alternated vocal and instrumental duties behind separate altars, the accompanying visual production was a dazzling combination of both artists’ signature live spectacles.

We were astounded by Porter Robinson and Madeon’s collaborative live endeavors in 2016, and we are excited to see what both artists individually have in store for 2017.

– Will McCarthy


Photos by Rukes, Molly Gale, AJRPhotography, and courtesy of artists.