I hope you all had an excellent Thanksgiving and I hope your food comas have subsided after a night’s rest. Today’s news spans from trance to dubstep with Above & Beyond, Jesse Rose, Depeche Mode, 12th Planet, and Flux Pavilion. As always, catch the full GDD™ Morning Update after the jump.
Above & Beyond warn against “Very weak imitations” in dance music
As far as dance music success stories go, Above & Beyond’s career is a standout. With a string of artist albums, an ever-growing Anjunabeats empire and tireless world tours, their superstar status has been hard-earned. In an interview with Mixmag this week, Jono Grant has drawn on the trio’s experience to send a sagely message to aspiring producers (and established ones, too). The bottom line being: don’t shamelessly ape the formula of David Guetta, Swedish House Mafia and co.
“I’ve noticed that many smaller producers are seemingly feeling a bit lost in where to go with their direction, and are perhaps seeing artists like having mainstream commercial success and saying, ‘I want a piece of that!’,” muses Grant in the interview. “They are then diverting from their chosen flight path and heading towards that, which is of course fine if it’s where they genuinely want to be, as some do. But for a lot of producers, they dilute what they are about because they are not David Guetta and don’t do what he does best. That’s not experimenting in my eyes, it’s panic!”
He then goes on to single out a particular example that’s likely to resonate with Beatport-trawling ITMers.
“For example, over the last two years I’ve noticed Beatport has been littered with tracks trying to directly mimic the riff from Swedish House Mafia’s One, including some of the bigger names,” Grant continues. “Now the instrumental of One was a great groundbreaking track when it came out, but it just feels very weak, perhaps even cynical, for so many producers to try and copy this, and in 95-percent of cases creating very weak imitations. In the process of doing something like this you dilute your own identity.
“Dance music has always been about borrowing ideas, but at the same time it’s also been about moving the sound forward. I’ve always felt the key is to draw influences from multiple sources in order to make something fresh sounding. Fair enough if you take influences from the SHM, but throw something new in there.”
This weekend is set to be a big one for Above & Beyond, with the 400th episode of its Trance Around The World radio show. Naturally, there’s a mammoth party planned – Beirut is the lucky destination – accompanied by an eight-hour broadcast. The headliners will be joined by Jaytech, Mat Zo, Kyau & Albert and Gareth Emery, so fans will want to settle in.
Jesse Rose’s ‘Made For The Night’ Documentary
Mixmag recently took a trip to LA to catch up with fidget house originator turned global house superstar Jesse Rose. Find out what we got up to with Jesse right here and check out his brand new documentary, Made For The Night, above. It gives further insight into the life and work of one of the best DJs in the game right now.
Depeche Mode Co-Founders Martin Gore and Vince Clarke Reunite After 30 Years
Depeche Mode co-founders Martin Gore and Vince Clarke have announced that they are working on music together for the first time since Clarke quit the band in 1981. (Clarke would go on to make synth-pop history with Erasure and Yazoo/Yaz.) The two have joined together to form a techno act called VCMG.
Gore said in a press release, “Out of the blue I got an e-mail from Vince just saying, ‘I’m interested in making a techno album. Are you interested in collaborating?’ This was maybe a year ago. He said, ‘No pressure, no deadlines,’ so I said, ‘OK,’ and that’s what we’ve been doing the last six month.”
VCMG will release a yet-untitled album early next year, which has already been recorded. In the meantime, they’ll put out a series of EPs, beginning with a 5-track collection called Spock. That’ll be out on December 13 through Mute, and includes four remixes of the title track.
01 Spock (Album version)
02 Spock (Edit Select remix)
03 Spock (Regis remix)
04 Spock (DVS1 Voyage Home remix)
05 Spock (XOQ remix)
DJ/producer 12th Planet picks five seminal dubstep tunes
It’s impossible to identify the first DJ to spin dubstep in Southern California, but for all practical purposes, it might as well have been 12th Planet. After being galvanized by the sounds gurgling out of London nightclub FWD and captured by Mary Anne Hobbs’ seminal “Dubstep Warz” special, the artist born John Dadzie became an apostle for the nascent sub-genre in early 2006.
Eschewing the drum-&-bass scene that had supported his touring lifestlye for the previous several years, Dadzie embraced the blistering wobble. One of the founders and the most prominent face of venerable bass-music promoters/record label SMOG, the L.A.-raised Dadzie is one of the city’s biggest dance-music success stories. He’s rocked festivals all over the world, toured with everyone from Daedelus to Skrillex and has officially remixed M.I.A. and John Legend (both will see forthcoming release). His own tunes have been remixed by fellow dubstep star Doctor P, and 12th has seen his videos played on MTV2. Moreover, he’s done it all independently.
Yet it’s as a live performer when 12th Planet is truly most in his element. He raises his fist and rallies crowds; he dances, raps and drops knowledge. He’s a whirlwind of energy capable of making audiences go as wild as Waka Flocka. In advance of SMOG’s fifth-year anniversary party in Santa Ana on Friday(headlined by dubstep legend Skream), Pop & Hiss asked 12th to select five of the songs that converted him to dubstep in the first place.
Wow, I remember hearing this song every night from 2006 to about 2008. This was one of the first Dubstep tracks I had heard with some serious attitude on the bass. It reminded me a lot of the late 90’s jump-up that Aphrodite was making.
My friend Tech Itch was one of the first people to ever mention the word dubstep to me. He told me to check out this group Vex’d, and lo and behold this was one of the first songs I had ever grasped the concept of dubstep on.
This track is the beginning of all “bro-step.” Before this song, dubstep was made a certain way, and after “Hammertime,” everything changed.
I remember hearing this song for the first time at a [drum-&-bass] show in San Francisco. I thought to myself, this dubstep sounds kind of like hip-hop. It was then I realized my longtime friend Matt from Santa Cruz was the orchestrator behind the sound. This track was pivotal to me, because it was probably the first American-made dubstep that caught U.K. rotation.
In my opinion, this track was the platform for modern dubstep. The way the drums are programmed, and the two-note bassline, is basically what set the tone for conventional dubstep.
(via LA Times)
Flux Pavilion @ KOKO Video
Check out the footage of Flux Pavilion dropping ‘Superbad’, his latest track with Doctor P, at KOKO while supporting Skrillex. Rusko couldn’t have had a better opening at this year’s HARD Haunted Mansion with this track.