Good morning! Today’s stories feature Afrojack, Above & Beyond, Justice, Zedd, SIZE TV, & Feed Me. Please read on after the jump.
Afrojack To Embark On ‘Jacked’ Summer Tour Across North America
America, a whole lot more “bleeps” and “chainsaws” are coming your way!
After a monumental showing at Ultra Music Festival, Dutch electronic dance music starAfrojack, who headlines Coachella (again!) this weekend, will soon embark on one of the most ambitious undertakings of his career. He’ll be presenting his widely successful “Jacked” party at over 30 dates on a headlining tour of North America beginning in May.
Along for the ride will be much of his Afro-fam: buddies Quintino, Bobby Burns, R3hab and Shermonology (at select dates).
With smash radio hits in “Give Me Everything,” “Look at Me Now” and his solo effort “Take Over Control,” Afrojack (born Nick van de Wall) is easily one of dance music’s most sought after performers, and he’ll soon be bringing the ruckus to major US cities, including Las Vegas, Chicago, Atlantic City, Boston and Miami, and making major festivals appearances at the Electric Daisy Carnival stops in New York and Las Vegas and Seattle’s Paradiso Festival, among others, through early July.
Tickets will be available for purchase on Friday, April 20 at 10 a.m. local time in all U.S. markets at Ticketmaster.com and LiveNation.com. Citi cardmembers will have access to presale tickets for select headlining dates starting on April 18 at 10 a.m. through Citi’s Private Pass Program.
For more information on Afrojack, visit www.afrojack.com. A complete list of tour dates (confirmed thus far) are below.
>> 5/18 Kelowna Waterfront Park, Kelowna (R3hab, Bobby Burns)
>> 5/19 The Vogue, Vancouver (Bobby Burns)
>> 5/20 Electric Daisy Carnival, New York
>> 5/26 Borgata, Atlantic City (R3hab, Bobby Burns)
>> 5/27 Fillmore, Detroit (R3hab, Bobby Burns)
>> 5/28 Buchanan’s, El Paso (R3hab, Bobby Burns)
>> 5/29 Cowboy’s, San Antonio (R3hab, Bobby Burns)
>> 5/30 House of Blues, Cleveland (R3hab, Bobby Burns)
>> 5/31 Stage AE, Pittsburgh (R3hab, Bobby Burns)
>> 6/1 Fillmore, Washington DC (R3hab, Bobby Burns)
>> 6/2 Free Press Summer Fest, Houston
>> 6/4 Epic, Minneapolis (R3hab, Bobby Burns)
>> 6/6 LC Pavilion, Columbus (R3hab, Bobby Burns)
>> 6/7 Festival Pier at Penn’s Landing, Philadelphia (R3hab, Bobby Burns, Shermanology)
>> 6/8 Electric Daisy Carnival, Las Vegas
>> 6/12 Beachum, Orlando (R3hab, Shermanology)
>> 6/13 Fillmore, Charlotte (R3hab, Shermanology)
>> 6/14 Tabernacle, Atlanta (TBD, Shermanology)
>> 6/15 Florida State Fair Expo Hall, Tampa (R3hab, Shermanology)
>> 6/16 Klipsch Amphitheater at Bayfront Park, Miami (R3hab, Shermanology)
>> 6/17 Spring Awakening, Chicago
>> 6/18 Marathon Music Works, Nashville (R3hab, Shermanology)
>> 6/19 House of Blues, New Orleans (R3hab, Shermanology)
>> 6/20 Palladium Ballroom, Dallas (R3hab, Quintino)
>> 6/22 Fillmore, Denver(R3hab, Quintino)
>> 6/23 Paradiso Festival, Seattle
>> 6/24 The Pageant, St. Louis (R3hab, Quintino)
>> 6/26 Metropolis, Montreal, QC (R3hab, Quintino)
>> 6/27 House of Blues, Boston (TBD, Quintino)
>> 6/29 Boonstock, Gibbons, AB
>> 6/30 Digital Dreams Festival, Toronto, ON
>> 7/1 Escapade Festival, Ottawa, ON
Anujunabeats Worldwide Compilation Series to Release Anjunabeats Worldwide 04, 4/23
On Monday, April 23rd, the Anujunabeats Worldwide compilation series will continue its tradition of showcasing the brightest new world-class talent with Anjunabeats Worldwide 04, mixed by Israel’s Maor Levi and Poland’s Nitrous Oxide.
The Anjunabeats Worldwide compilations are a way for Anjunabeats to highlight the rising stars of the electronic music world. Previous editions have served as a springboard for the famous Finns Super8 & Tab, Russian superstar Arty and the effervescent and eclectic Mat Zo.
Maor Levi, the maestro behind CD1, started 16-year old with “Lital” in 2006, and has since matured into a key part of the Anjunabeats family, as well as producing techno and house for Mark Knight’s Toolroom as 123XYZ. 2012 sees Maor at the very top of his game following a run of releases and remixes that have graced the sets of DJs like Above & Beyond, Mark Knight, Tiesto and Fatboy Slim.
Given his cross genre dance music, Maor’s mix is an exciting hybrid of multiple influences. It includes Mat Zo’s “It’s Yours” (an homage to the house classic by Jon Cutler and E-Man), as well as unreleased material from current Anjunabeats stars Norin & Rad and Genix. Also featured is an exclusive 2012 Maor Levi remix of Super8 & Tab’s Anjunabeats classic “Alba.”
CD2 is mixed by Nitrous Oxide, aka Krzysztof Pretkiewicz, who is responsible for countless Anjunabeats classics such as “North Pole,” “Downforce,” and the recent “iPeople.” Krzysztof represents forward-thinking, energized dance music at its best, and the mix has many of his personal productions, including the forthcoming single “Tiburon” and his collaboration with Space RockerZ “Energize.” The mix also contains tracks and remixes from the likes of Super8 & Tab, Andrew Bayer, Boom Jinx & Daniel Kandi and Ost & Meyer. Like CD1, many of these are exclusive to this compilation.
Justice: Coachella Is Our Favorite Music Festival
Justice keep a special place in their heart for Coachella. The Grammy-nominated French electronic duo have a sentimental connection with the event; when they performed in 2007 it was the first festival they had ever played, and in fact it was one of their first live sets of their career.
“We played just weeks after we finished our first record,” says Xavier de Rosnay on site this past Sunday, while the other half of Justice, Gaspard Augé, nods and smokes a cigarette. Polite and surprisingly mild-mannered, neither of them seem concerned with the fact that they are about to go play for a ridiculously large amount of people.
“Coachella is our favorite festival,” says de Rosnay, in a thick French accent. “It’s so eclectic, not really defined by any genre.” Indeed, the set they play shortly afterward is attended by a diverse crowd, uniting hard-core ravers lured away from the Sahara tent with metal-heads in jean jackets jumping with ferocious energy. Their smash “D.A.N.C.E.” goes on for ten solid minutes, blaring through combination after combination of sound, their signature white cross pulsating behind them.
Perhaps contrary to the image they fostered in their documentary A Cross The Universe — in which they act, well, famously weird — Justice’s Coachella experience hasn’t been fueled by extracurricular substances.
When I ask de Rosnay what drugs they’re doing this weekend, he just shakes his head. “We’re more concerned with playing a great show than being all stoned,” he says.
Given their fans reaction to their performance — which included cuts from their latest record Audio, Video, Disco — it seems like everything has come full circle.
(via LA Weekly)
Zedd Pairs Up With Lady Gaga for Tour, Possible Album Work
For DJ/producer Zedd, getting into Lady Gaga’s inner circle took just a touch.
“I introduced them in London at a Beats event,” Interscope A&R representative Dave Rene says. “I said, ‘Gaga, I want you to meet Zedd.’ She just reached her arm out and touched him and said, ‘Let’s work together.'”
It wasn’t just sensory stimuli, of course. Zedd — 22-year-old German native Anton Zaslavski — has in a very short time become the apple of Interscope’s increasingly electronic dance music-focused eye, and not just for the usual remixes and endemic dance fodder: for pop production of the highest order.
“He’s unique,” Interscope Geffen A&M Records chairman Jimmy Iovine says. “With producing, you can acquire a feel along the way. Zedd already has it, at a very young age, which makes him a really exciting prospect. He knows song structure and he has the basic instincts of production. When I see that in people, I work with them.”
While the Interscope team won’t comment on the exact nature of Zedd’s work for Gaga just yet, the two artists are in active contact. Gaga is known to be working on a follow-up to last year’s chart-topping Born This Way, and she’s tapped the young DJ to serve as direct support for her upcoming 16-date tour of Asia, which begins April 27 in Seoul’s Olympic Stadium. (Zedd also played Coachella and will hit Lollapalooza.)
Meanwhile, Zedd is collaborating with another pop titan, songwriter/producer Max Martin, and is close to finishing what Zedd calls “a definite hit” that label bosses, including Iovine, are reportedly clamoring to secure for their biggest artists. Zedd’s also working on his first artist album, which he says is modeled after the narrative quality of one of his favorites, Justice’s Cross, and slated for release on Interscope later this year. “I don’t want to put 12 singles on an album,” he says. “I want to make a story, a little movie.”
Less than two years ago, Zedd was home in Kaiserslatern, Germany, playing with various bands (from jazz to hardcore) and entering remix contests-two of which, hosted by dance-focused retailer DSP Beatport, he won. Those early works caught the ears of Interscope’s Rene, who enlisted him for some remixes-the same path Rene took with another promising talent, Skrillex.
“Those early remixes could be original tracks easily. They’re not remixes, they’re from-the-ground-up reproductions,” Rene says. The songs included Diddy’s “Ass on the Floor,” Gaga’s “Marry the Night” (which Zedd completed in just 24 hours and was selected for the Born This Way deluxe edition) and JoJo’s “The Other Chick,” which Rene says never saw release because it was too good. “It was so much better than the original it caused a giant rift in the camp, and the producers and writers wouldn’t let us put it out.”
Zedd’s prowess for giving drama and structure to 8-bit beats also got him in the door with Skrillex. His single “Shave It” was the first release on the Grammy Award-winning sensation’s independent digital label Owsla, and Skrillex’s manager Tim Smith of Blood Company is currently co-managing Zedd’s career with Rene.
“A lot of EDM is not bad at all when it’s simple, but a lot of it is not really musical,” Zedd says. “That’s just what I really like to do: taking what I had at the beginning, which is classical and jazz influences, and putting it into electro.”
“People start to think because they’re making dance music and putting out records that they’re record producers, but they’re not,” Rene says. “Making a dance track versus making an actual song is a whole different beast. Anton was never saying, ‘I’m already that.’ He said, ‘That’s what I want, and what I can be.'”
SIZE TV Launches With Steve Angello
Ever wondered what it was like to be globe-trotting, beat-dropping playboy Steve Angello? Of course you have. Now you get your chance at a behind-the-scenes look with the newly announced Size TV.
For the first time, Steve Angello is allowing cameras to capture his personal life as well as the extended Size Records family. The monthly video series will document everything from the creative process that goes into developing dance floor hits to what its like to get word from Steve that you are signing a track to Size.
Check out the first video released this week.
Feed Me: “What happened to mystery in music?”
Given the amount of misspelt, poorly thought-out and often pretty pointless Twitter soapboxing from the musically-inclined, it can be pretty refreshing when an artist takes the time to publish an insightful and thought-provoking musing on electronic music. Today, British producer Feed Me (also known under the moniker Spor) did just that, taking to his Facebook to (very eloquently) vent about the industry and share how much making music means to him.
Because it wouldn’t do the post justice to only pick out a few lines, here’s the full thing straight fromFeed Me’s Facebook page – food for thought indeed.
“I’ve almost stopped doing interviews because I’m achieving nothing. If you want to find something out about me, ask me personally. If it catches my eye, I’ll respond, but dragging through another interview that no one thought about for more than two minutes seems like treading very boring water. Not that they’ve all been that way; but it’s the trend.
A well known electronic music magazine recently wanted to do a few page spread about my production techniques. They sent me a list of preliminary questions; what plugins do I use for ‘dirty’ sounds, what makes a good ‘drop’, how much ‘filth is too much filth’? Who wrote this? I could play the system; give away minimal information in exchange for some printed coverage, but at this point, fuck it. The Mau5hax thing was great; I got to interface with talented people and enjoy making music. I learnt as well as got involved. I didn’t sit and have my mechanical techniques picked at while my actual motivation was ignored; we made decisions together.
I don’t mind the occasional production Q, but what happened to mystery in music and art? There’s YouTube tutorials for days now online. Look it up; these production conversations are redundant. The truth and effect comes in the sincerity and composition of the actual piece. If I read an interview with an artist of any type, what I want to know is the ‘why’ – not the ‘how’. Why as electronic artists are we constricted to being quizzed monotonously about our techniques, and not ever our motivation? The reason anything I made sounds the way it did is because I sat and worked out every single piece of it myself. Give every one of us the same tools, and see what we all end up with – it’s our differences in expression and decision making that makes us.
I’m doing this because I honestly don’t know what else I can do. Music and art for me is a necessary release, and once people picked up on what I was making I was thrown into it. I was a bottled up, angry teenager, and I was completely consumed by the satisfaction I’d found in this new idea of making my own music. It consumed my life and I found I loved what it brought to it, and now I’m on an endless journey to see where it takes me, and where I can take it. Because of it, my entire late teenage and adult life I’ve been travelling the world, from Spor to Feed Me, constantly humbled by the people I’ve met, things I’ve seen, extremes I’ve lived through – I’m nothing but overwhelmingly grateful, it’s almost too much.
Some of it has been physically and mentally tough, but so far I’ve never quit. It’s never left my mind that should I drop dead, there’s a million people who would kill to take my place. I don’t believe in luck necessarily; I carved this out myself, but I am honoured to have what I have. If you’re going to complain about your reality when you’re living another persons dream, then I think you need a massive reality check. No one’s forcing you. Music is magic; and I think as artists we have a duty to keep it that way, not dissolve it down into presets, complaints, one-upmanship and catering to the market. It’s not all pink candy-floss cloud rides, and I think it looks fake if you depict it that way, but it really could be a lot fucking worse.
I used to lie and listen to my favourite records and daydream about how they were thought up, get lost in the sounds. There was no one to ask or study, and the resulting domino effect of speculation led me to my own ideas. It’s always been the unknown that’s motivated me. Spor was what I fell in to, but Feed Me is my world, a projection of a piece of me, and a way of expressing whatever I feel like. I couldn’t have built what I have without you guys supporting me, but I’ll always be creating and writing it none the less. I love you all for letting me take it this far.
I don’t normally post my opinions on here, but I’ve never got anywhere by playing the game, and sometimes I just feel I need to 1) say thanks, and 2) say why.”