After exploding onto the scene with his remix of Route 94′s “My Love,” Bender is back at it again with his version of Dirty South’s latest hit, “Unbreakable.” Reaching new heights with his first official release, Bender still stays true to his signature deep house sound. He gives Dragon’s track a dream-like makeover by beautifully accentuating Sam Martin’s vocals with groovy percussive beats and exquisite synths. This free track is the perfect way to relax at the end of a long day, so check it out and look out for more from Bender!
Electronic music has been the talk of the town in the music industry for a few years now as the genre has exploded, and evolved faster than anyone expected. I was introduced to electronic music about 4 years ago, and as time has gone on, my tastes have changed and matured, but one constant that has yet to change is my disbelief in how Porter Robinson influences this industry.
I began writing a brief background of his earlier songs and the Worlds album, but then realized I could write a thesis on that. So I’ll stick to my interview and review of the “Worlds” tour for this one. I reached out to Porter’s team with low expectations as Porter has become one of the most talked about acts of 2014 and has been insanely busy on his tour. But, his delightful team responded immediately, allowing me to pick the producer’s brain in a phone interview.
At the time, Porter was in Montreal for his shows in Canada and had a little downtime before his next show. I then delved into the questions as I was curious how the tour had been going so far. I opened up asking him, “How had the tour been going in comparison to his expectations?” He responded that the tour had been awesome so far in terms of reactions from people. He had expected there to be some hesitation from fans but the reception had been almost completely positive. He noted that the biggest distinction for this tour was the transition to a live set up from DJing on just a MIDI controller. He felt as if performing live was natural to him and was what he was suppose to be doing.
So I asked Porter how he chose Lemaitre and Giraffage as his opening acts because all three groups of musicians had a diverse range of styles. Lemaitre, he told me, had been a long time favorite of his as he loved their indie and electronic fusion in a time where DJs dominated the market. He also “wanted to surprise people by having a band open [for him].” In terms of Giraffage, Porter instantly liked his “Japanese-inspired trap thing.” I responded by saying that I found the setup interesting – having a band followed by a DJ followed by a fusion of the two – Porter’s live show. It was like a math equation that no one had done before but made complete sense.
When I arrived at the show, I arrived about 10 minutes into Giraffage’s set and man was he shredding. Brisk transitions in tandem with psychedelic dolphin visuals topped with an energetic presence on stage, Giraffage knew how to direct the crowd. He quickly moved and manipulated his MIDI controller and launchpad playing them both like a keyboard. The pinnacle of his set was a future bass/melodic trap rendition of “Party in the USA” that had everyone singing along.
As the stage was set up, everyone stood antsy waiting for the main event. When the lights dimmed, the crowd erupted in cheers and the 22-year-old producer took his position behind multiple keyboards, virtual drum set, laptop and other midi controllers. His intro was a custom VIP edit of Sea of Voices that led into his famous intro of Sad Machine.
Now, I would give a play-by-play of every detail of the show with a complete tracklist, but the review would be as long as the Human Genome Project so I’ll save your eyes from drying out and hit my favorite moments complemented by my interview.
After asking about the opening acts, I turned to his personal performances. I questioned him about his favorite song to perform and he immediately responded “Sad Machine.” He loved being able to play the piano keyboards while simultaneously incorporating his own vocals. When the intro melody to “Sad Machine” came on, the crowd erupted. Between Porter’s vocals, the stunning visuals, and on-the-fly playing of the song, I knew this concert was going to be special. Porter trickled the keys in a custom arrangement of his favorite song that just sent the feels to the entire crowd. When the pause before the second drop came, Porter jumped up and simultaneously as he fell back to earth steam shot out over the crowd. Unbelievable.
Next came one of my favorite parts of the show. After a crazy 5 minutes or so of “Sad Machine,” there was a brief silence until it was broken by the distinguished vocal hook emanated to all corners of the venue, “Cuz loving you is easy, I’m so in love in every way.” I was sincerely surprised that he had some older material worked into the live show. “Easy” was an adventure. Again, Porter graced the crowd with a custom arrangement of the collaboration with Mat Zo and it was beautiful. What really was spectacular, though, were the visuals. I felt like I was going through a wormhole or teleportation tunnel to a new world. The visuals transported the crowd into a time travel that mesmerized everyone for the entirety of the song.
He then went on to play “Years of War,” “Fresh Static Snow,” “Flicker,” and some new material that really changed the pace of the whole show. Again, the mastermind behind the show astonished the crowd with a section of the show that evoked some nostalgia for the diehard Porter fans. He grabbed for two drum sticks and began banging on the electronic drum set as he played the percussion to a distorted, twisted, hard-core, almost heavy metal-inspired, electro banger that threw us for a loop. It added a great change of pace for the show that allowed the long-time fans of Porter to go hard in the paint.
Personal anecdote: the crowd was an eclectic group of people that you would think you would normally see at a rock concert instead of a group of liberal ravers. I did, however, come across fellow PLUR ravers that were dressed in silver tutus, kandi, furry bear hats and everything in between. It was honestly satisfying to me to see an eclectic group at this concert because that is what this show represents: the merging of rave culture and live music culture.
To end the show, Porter played a beautiful, sentimental rendition of his orchestral song “Fellow Feeling” followed by, my personal favorite, “Lionhearted” to end everything. To say the “Worlds” tour is a once in a lifetime experience is an understatement. Porter has officially changed the game with this show as he fuses the popularity of electronic music with the age-old experience of a live show to create something that everyone should experience.
Now, for my last two interview questions, I asked Porter first, “Who do you think are the other artists changing up the stigma that is EDM?” He responded with an answer that I was not totally expecting. He went on to tell me about how people have it all wrong with the “Worlds” show if they think that it is his goal to change EDM. He’s not interested in changing what EDM is. “Party music is necessary. I don’t hate the genre. I feel that there is a place for party music and a place for live shows. I used to play party music but now I have changed to focusing my attention on a live experience,” Porter says. In terms of artists changing the game, he thinks Flume, Odesza, and Kygo were three artists that were crafting new paths for EDM to branch off to.
To end the interview, I had to go with a fun question and knowing how absorbed in Japanese culture Porter is I asked him what his favorite sushi was. “I really like the inside out rolls with the rice on the inside and seaweed on the outside. I like nigiri as well, the ones with the ball of rice and fish just sitting on top. If you ever go to Japan, you have to get it there. The fish is so fresh. It’s like nothing I’ve ever had before.”
Well, I guess my next vacation will have to be to Japan.
Written by Austin Evenson
Matt DiMona made his debut appearance into my iTunes with his remix of the 2007 Fergie hit, “Glamourous” about a month ago. The LA-based producer calls his sound “feel good house” as he injects glittering synth patterns that create a tropical yet soulful melodies. He turns to the next pop princess, Katy Perry, and gives her catchy original “California Gurls” a west coast revamp. At first, I cringed a little at the vocal manipulation that Matt used as he drops the tone of Katy Perry’s voice to an almost-baritone pitch. But, after circulating the song through my earbuds a couple times, I could feel the warmth of the west coast surge through me as the cold creeps in on the east coast, and now it’s at the top my beach playlist. Matt DiMona’s ability to fuse tropical house sounds with deep, sultry definitely earns him a spot in the wave of tropical rookies to keep an eye on.
Russia’s Arty releases the official music video for his remix of OneRepublic’s “I Lived.” After gaining both critical and commercial acclaim on his gorgeous remix, Arty follows up with a gripping visual treatment to add another layer of depth to the release. This music video captures the essence of the song by telling a story through live, and behind-the-scenes, footage of both Arty and OneRepublic, artistically woven together for an emotional viewing experience.
Buy Arty’s remix of OneRepublic’s “I Lived” on iTunes: http://smarturl.it/ILivedArtyRmx.
On his ”I Lived” remix, Arty has taken elements from the original and worked them into a melody-drenched progressive house ballad, successfully repositioning the track for the dance floor.
More Information About Arty
The first artist signed to Insomniac/Interscope Records, Arty, has been enjoying one of his best years to date, playing the world’s finest festivals and nightclubs to debut his “Up All Night” tour concept, while captivating music lovers with his hit single, “Up All Night” featuring Angel Taylor, off of his highly-anticipated debut album. In the midst of all of this and the release of the official “Up All Night” music video and remix package last month, he’s been in the studio diligently working with the industry’s top songwriters/singers to complete his debut album. With a packed schedule for the rest of the year including more releases and tour dates, Arty and his fans surely have more than enough to look forward to.
TomorrowWorld, one of the most magical festivals in the world, returned this past September for its second edition nestled on the beautiful grounds of Chattahoochee Hills, Georgia. 160,000 happy souls came together on the festival’s mythical grounds filled with lush rolling hills and lakes. On over 500 acres of natural picturesque surroundings, TomorrowWorld created a breathtaking fantasy world featuring several stunning stage structures and a grandiose Arising of Life Stage, spanning over 400 feet wide and 100 feet tall.
TomorrowWorld’s vibrant camping city, DreamVille, was home to over 40,000 fans per night throughout the weekend. From performances on Thursday evening at the Gathering, shopping and dining in The Marketplace, one-of-a-kind sunrise yoga sessions, and receiving their daily TomorrowWorld newspaper, festivalgoers truly lived in a fantasy world of their own.
TomorrowWorld TV, TomorrowWorld’s live broadcast on YouTube, compiled millions of views throughout the festival from fans in over 150 countries. Fans from around the world also experienced TomorrowWorld Live on Snapchat, which captured unique viewpoints of festival goers. TomorrowWorld’s Facebook page has become a home base for ‘The People of Tomorrow’ and has now surpassed all other U.S. festivals with over 5.5 million likes. During TomorrowWorld, and in the week’s prior and after the festival, TomorrowWorld’s channels generated nearly 3 Billion potential media impressions.
Stay tuned for the official TomorrowWorld 2014 aftermovie!
TomorrowWorld Returns: September 25-26-27, 2015
In honor of Halloween and Dirtybird’s 10-year anniversary steadily approaching, rising star, Justin Jay, is bringing middle school grinding to underground dance floors with his remix of D4L’s “Laffy Taffy.”
“Dirtybird’s 10-year anniversary is creeping up, which is crazy.” Justin says, “Can’t believe the label’s been doing its thing for 10-years. I wish I’d been in on it since I was 11, but I was getting down to jamz like this at the time so I can’t really complain. With Halloween coming up, this just had to happen…”
Taking it back to the old school with a reimagined throwback jam, Justin stays true to the Dirtybird’s signature sound on his ”Laffy Taffy” remix. With raw drum machine sounds, a hefty load of 808 bass, and a whole lot of goofiness on top, he’s brought the classic back to life, and it’s bound to be on repeat in fans’ heads – whether they like it or not.
2013 was the year that marked a change in landscape at the top tier of the electronic community, after a prolonged dominance from a pioneering few, last year saw the rise of an ambassador figure for a new generation. Crowning off a colossal 12-month period of hit records and global tours by claiming the World #1 DJ title in the 2013 edition of the Top 100 DJ Poll, beating the likes of Armin van Buuren and Tiësto, Hardwell also made history by becoming the ‘youngest ever DJ’ to win the prestigious award. Fast-forward a year and the leviathan Dutch star has done it again – cementing his place atop of the world’s elite.
Current #1 DJ in the world, Hardwell, has had an extraordinary 2014. Continuing to rule supreme over the dance music world, reeling off chart-topping hit after hit like ‘Dare You’ and ‘Everybody Is In The Place,’ the iconic Dutch producer now delivers the official music video for his newest single, ‘Young Again’ featuring Chris Jones. This song is the first taste of his highly anticipated debut album, United We Are, which is also equipped to hit a high note amongst the charts.
Pre-Order Hardwell’s ”Young Again” ft. Chris Jones on iTunes: http://bit.ly/YoungAgainiTunes.
The official “Young Again” music video brings the song’s story to life with Hardwell suddenly embarking on a captivating journey in a virtual world, departing from his reality of performing in front of thousands of fans. Adding another layer of depth to the song, this visual treatment further manifests its meaning for fans to connect with on a personal level.
Powered with emotion, ’Young Again’ is a merger of genre-bending bliss, fusing rootsy, electro-acoustic guitar strings with Jones’s powerful vocals that command attention the second the track begins - a new anthem is truly unleashed. Questioning, “Will We Ever Feel Young Again?” as the track switches between towering club beats and massive drops, key chords pound beneath the catchy melody, accumulating in a vocal-driven club stormer with mass appeal.
Highlighting Hardwell’s sheer versatility by stepping out of the traditional, progressive house blueprint and daring to be different, ‘Young Again’ is an infectious record readied to dominate the charts and set up the imminent release of his debut artist album, United We Are, in proper fashion.
In the midst of this release, Hardwell is prepping for his I AM HARDWELL North American tour that is launching in just a couple of weeks.
I AM HARDWELL North American Tour
Hardwell’s I AM HARDWELL North American Tour launches in Chicago on October 31st, and runs through five other dates across the U.S. and Canada before closing at the legendary Madison Square Garden in New York on November 15th. Tickets for the I AM HARDWELL North American Tour are on sale here: http://bit.ly/1qmonpJ.
|31-Oct||UIC Pavilion||Chicago, IL|
|1-Nov||International Centre – Hall 5/Arrow Hall||Toronto, ON|
|7-Nov||Bill Graham Civic Auditorium||San Francisco, CA|
|8-Nov||The Forum||Los Angeles, CA|
|10-Nov||Pacific Coliseum||Vancouver, BC|
|14-Nov||Klipsch Amphitheater at Bayfront Park||Miami, FL|
|15-Nov||Madison Square Garden||New York, NY|
After his much anticipated stateside appearance, tropical house guru Thomas Jack has definitely been leaving his mark all over the country. From supporting Kygo on his massive “Endless Summer Tour” to taking over parties from NYC to Miami, Tom continues to spread the summer vibes as winter slowly creeps up on us. Less than three weeks ago, the Australian producer dropped his first remix in months and now he feeds us again with a new remix of MYNGA‘s original “Back Home” featuring Cosmo Klein. Thomas Jack remixes MYNGA with his usual flair packed with soothing saxophone, beach-ready percussion, and just vibes of pineapples and palm trees. The only place I want to be right now is the poolside after jamming out to this one.
Sundays are usually pretty skim in terms of new music being released, but to help with the post-weekend depression, Gryffin and Hotel Garuda have teamed up and brought us a fresh new remix of Banks’ “Beggin For Thread.” The indie-pop original creates a darker, melancholy mood that develops a lot of emotion throughout, but when these three take it for a spin, they bring a whole different vibe. Keeping BANKS’ vocals in full form, Hotel Garuda implements their distinguished bouncing bassline that bumps HARD while Gryffin shreds on the guitar establishing a playful atmosphere. The deal breaker with this track, though, are the vocal chops of the pop singer’s voice that showcases how talented this collaboration is. Hotel Garuda and Gryffin have been on the rise all summer and are definitely two acts to watch come into the spotlight.