• Crosstown Rebels celebrate Day Zero in Mexico
• Universal Takeover of EMI Approved by U.S., Europe
• Electronic Music Conference brings together the world’s leading artists, managers, industry, promoters, media and more in Sydney
• Video: Diplo [ft. Jahan Lennon]: “About That Life” – “a kaleidoscopic montage of sun-streaked images”
• Track of the day: [Deep House] dOP feat. Pillow Talk – Your Feeling (Soul Button Remix)
Crosstown Rebels celebrate Day Zero in Mexico
Crosstown Rebels have announced plans for Day Zero, a 24-hour party taking place in Mexico on December 21st, 2012.
The event is timed to coincide with what the Mayans believed to be the end of the current “World Age”—that is, the cosmically significant occurrence at the center of the 2012 theories. Many people describe this event as some kind of apocalypse, but Crosstown Rebels boss Damian Lazarus assures us that “it’s more of a new beginning—the beginning of a new chapter.” Day Zero is a celebration of this transition. It’s taking place among the temples at a never-before-used Mayan theme park in Playa Del Carmen. The party starts 6:00 PM on December 20th and ends at 6:11 PM on December 21st—the exact moment this cosmic shift is expected to take place.
The lineup is a unique mix of core Crosstown artists (Lazarus, Jamie Jones, Art Department, Subb-an, Amirali, Infinity Ink, Fur Coat, Francesca Lombardo), friends of the family (Acid Pauli, Maayan Nidam, Thugfucker, Metrika, Matias Aguayo) and a few interesting curveballs (3D of Massive Attack vs James Lavelle, Trentemøllerand Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs). There will be Mayan dancers and shamanic rituals, antics provided by Crystal Rebels and lots of crazy visuals (e.g. video-mapped floating pyramids).
Day Zero is meant to be the first in a series of special events around the world, though no plans exist yet for future editions. Last week we called up Lazarus in Ibiza (post-disco nap, pre-Paradise at DC10) for his side of the story:
How was Burning Man?
Incredible, it really is like no place on earth. The Rebel Heart—that is, the Crosstown Rebels and Robot Heart party on the Wednesday—it’s become something of a phenomenon. It’s just so intense, literally like partying on another planet. We had about three or four thousand people there for the party. We drive out to the Playa, deep into the desert and then everyone follows on their bikes. It’s just such a bizarre occurrence. You start a party somewhere, then it starts moving and everyone starts following behind you, like all these art cars come and surround the party. I guess they kind of make a nightclub, if you like. It’s pretty special, man.
In a way that seems like a similar experience to what you’re trying to create with Day Zero. Would you say that’s true?
Burning Man offers up the experience for freedom of expression and I think this event will offer a similar platform. A chance to creatively open up and join with like minded people. We are in discussions with a couple of amazing art cars that we discovered at Burning Man this year about the possibility of them joining us in Mexico.
I should point out, though, that the actual venue that we have for Day Zero is like nothing I’ve ever seen before in my life: it’s an as-yet unopened to the public Mayan theme park, so it has three pyramids, two lakes, four swimming pools. It’s as good as being in the real thing. We are going to have the stage in front of the main pyramid, and we are working with an incredible visuals company. We are going to be video-mapping onto the pyramids, and we have a lot of incredible surprises that will be awaiting people for the event. Basically the idea was to pull together the dream location, the dream lineup, dream partnerships, people that we love working with, to make this event something people have never seen before. It just kind of feels like the planets are aligning, and that’s exactly what is going to happen.
Can you give me an explanation of the significance of the date? What exactly is the context?
It’s the first time in 26,000 years that there will be a galactic alignment of the planets. The Mayans foretold that this would be the end of a life cycle, and many people kind of see this as being the end of the world. Most people who have any kind of understanding of the relevance of this date would say it’s more of a new beginning—the beginning of a new chapter. I think that the date December 21st, 2012 is the kind of thing that a lot of people would generally just dismiss as hogwash or just a load of old bullshit, but I think that for the first time we have something that our generation can latch onto that actually feels like something special. I think there’s been some kind of generational shift in attitude, there’s a lot of uncertainty in our world at the moment. There’s a lack of religious belief, and so that kind of means that the people don’t really have anything on a higher level to hold onto. I think this date actually offers people the chance to take a bit of stock of their lives, to think about who they are, what they do, what they give, what they take from this world in which we live. I think putting it into the perspective of what we do as musicians or DJs or producers or artists is a really good opportunity for people to come together and celebrate the fact we’re here and celebrating the way we know best—by putting on an amazing party and enjoying the best possible music together with our favorite people and basically coming together to celebrate the life that we have and see what’s about to come next.
Do you think parties and festivals can have a semi-religious role in people’s lives?
I think a lot of people follow this music and this lifestyle as ardently and with as much passion as many people follow a religion or belief, you know? I’ve personally witnessed and experienced so many moments of pure beauty and love and just true moments with dreamlike qualities that you couldn’t imagine happening in everyday life, for example a sunrise set to the backdrop of our music at a place like Burning Man or certain records that just kind of lift your spirit to a higher place, moments of pure clarity when you’re enjoying a moment like dancing with a friend or a stranger. I think our music plays a very important role in a lot of people’s lives. I think now’s a good time to appreciate that and to really show people that this music is about more than just paying money and walking into a nightclub and getting off your head for a few hours, you know?
Would you say this is the most special event Crosstown has ever done?
Absolutely, yeah, without question. I think it was just kind of time for us to step it up a little bit and try something different. I’m a bit of dreamer, obviously, and I have this whole idea in my head of how this event should be. Like I said, it’s trying to put my dream team together, both artistically and musically and from the production level, and involving people that bring something extra to my life that’s not just the day-to-day running of a record label or a nightclub. So I’m hoping this is going to be something very, very special, not just for Mexico but for our friends all over the world who will hopefully come and join us.
Have you given much thought to future Day Zero events?
Well realistically we’re so busy working with this at the moment that we’ll have to take each day as it comes, but I like the idea of finding alternative spaces, maybe places of natural beauty, to hold similar events in the future. But for the moment, we’re just concentrating on this one on the 20th and 21st of December. I found out that the Mayans say that the end of the calendar cycle will happen at exactly 6:11 PM on the 21st of December Mexico time, so I decided that we’d run a 24-hour event which would start at 6:00 PM on the 20th and close at exactly the moment the Mayans say that the cycle ends. So I don’t know what’s going to happen at 6:11 PM on the 21st—I suppose you have to wait and see—but I know that we’ll be planning something very special leading up to that.
Tickets to Day Zero are available here on RA.
(via Resident Advisor)
Universal Takeover of EMI Approved by U.S., Europe
Music industry titans are growing closer to consolidation. The New York Times reports that the U.S.’ Federal Trade Commission as well as the European Commission have approvedUniversal Music Group‘s acquisition of EMI, under certain conditions.
Universal Music is allowed to take over EMI Music, and become an even-bigger biggest music company in the world, so long as it surrenders a third of EMI’s assets. So Universal won’t own the Parlophone, Mute, Chrysalis, Ensign, EMI Classics, and Virgin Classics labels, as well as EMI’s share of the Now That’s What I Call Music! series. Universal also has to sell the Co-Op Music group, as well as Sanctuary Records. All of these assets must be sold within the next six months.
Under these terms, Universal will lose the rights to release music globally by artists such as Coldplay, Blur, Pink Floyd, Kylie Minogue, David Bowie, Depeche Mode, Nick Cave, M83, the Chemical Brothers, the Knife, Bat for Lashes, Pet Shop Boys, Erasure, Liars, and many more. However, they will still hold the rights to the Beatles and Robbie Williams, among many, many other superstar acts.
According to the Times, Mute founder Daniel Miller “has expressed interest” in buying Mute back (he sold it to EMI in 2002).
The Independent Music Companies Association (IMPALA), which represents European indie labels, has released a statement objecting to the European Commission’s approval of the merger. IMPALA represents a number of big indie labels including Beggars Group imprints like Rough Trade, 4AD, Matador and XL, as well as PIAS, Cooking Vinyl, !K7, Epitaph, and others.
In the statement, Beggars Group Chariman Martin Mills said, “It’s good to see that the Commission has seen this deal as such a threat to the market that it has demanded and received truly swingeing commitments to divestments. However, that should not conceal that fact that Universal’s arrogance has paid off for them, that they have destroyed a significant competitor, and that even with these divestments their ability to dominate and control the market has reached even more unacceptable levels. Anyone trying to start a new digital service will be realising that very soon, and we will continue to look to the regulators to monitor ongoing behaviour.”
The Universal takeover of EMI has also been approved already by Canada, Japan, Australia, and New Zealand, as the Times points out.
Read the European Commission’s full decision here.
Introducing the Electronic Music Conference
After all the gongs were handed out at the 2012 inthemix awards, there was one more big announcement for the industry crowd gathered in Sydney. This November, Australia is set to host Asia-Pacific’s first conference dedicated to electronic music, presented by inthemix. The inaugural Electronic Music Conference will bring together the world’s leading artists, managers, industry, promoters, media and more in Sydney for a packed program of panels and keynote interviews to dissect and discuss the Australian dance music industry. Then, of course, there’ll be the parties.
The Electronic Music Conference is set for Tuesday November 27 and Wednesday November 28 2012. The timing falls in line with the immense Stereosonic tour and the kick-off to the summer season, so it’s sure to be a fascinating couple of days. EMC 2012 is the first announcement in a schedule of events for ARIA Week, a week-long celebration leading up to the 2012 ARIA Awards.
Sound Alliance CEO Neil Ackland made the announcement from the inthemix awards stage last night. “Australia has been one of the world’s leading dance music markets for over a decade, with more than 750,000 Australians visiting dance festivals each year,” he said. “Our artists are achieving great success on a global stage. Our festivals are breaking new ground. Our industry is not just respected, it is envied the world over, and we believe it’s time Australia had a conference that matched our global status and ambition.” Stay tuned for the announcement of speakers, panels and how to get tickets on inthemix in the coming weeks.
Video: Diplo [ft. Jahan Lennon]: “About That Life”
Here is the appropriately hippie-ish clip for Diplo‘s new single with Jahan Lennon, “About That Life”, directed by seapunk godfather Lil Internet and Jack Cearnal. It’s a kaleidoscopic montage of sun-streaked images– hazy American flags, yoga poses on a rooftop– with Jahan sporting some very Lennon-ish specs. (New Yorkers may recognize some shots that look like they were filmed inside the chili-pepper-laden East Village Indian restaurant Panna II.)