Taken from Dan Snaiths LP as Daphni the main man behind Caribou delights with...
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Daphni – Xing Tian
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Swedish DJ Avicii, one of the world's biggest dance music stars, has died in Oman at the age of 28.
Avicii's club anthems include Wake Me Up, Levels, and recently, Lonely Together with Rita Ora.
His representative said in a statement: "It is with profound sorrow that we announce the loss of Tim Bergling, also known as Avicii.
"The family is devastated and we ask everyone to please respect their need for privacy in this difficult time."
No cause of death was announced, and Avicii's representative said no further statements would be issued.
The superstar DJ behind some of the decade's biggest hits The electronic dance music (EDM) star, who reportedly made $250,000 (£180,000) a night on tour, had struggled with some health issues in the past, having his gall bladder and appendix removed in 2014.
He announced his retirement from touring in 2016, partly because of the health problems.
"I know I am blessed to be able to travel all around the world and perform, but I have too little left for the life of a real person behind the artist," he said at the time.
Avicii's Wake Me Up breaks a million Avicii sixth on DJ rich list Avicii recovering after an operation
Who was Avicii?
One of the biggest names in dance music of the last 10 years, he had a catalogue full of pumping, uplifting, house smashes He started his career when he won a production competition held by Pete Tong in 2008 He went on to notch up 11 billion streams on Spotify and was the first EDM DJ to stage a worldwide arena tour He was nominated for two Grammy Awards and had nine UK top 10 singles, including two number ones He suffered from health problems including acute pancreatitis, in part due to excessive drinking
He later announced a return to the studio, and released a new self-titled EP in 2017.
The EP, Avĩci (01), was nominated for a Billboard music award for top electronic album just days before his death.
As well as working with the likes of Aloe Blacc and Rita Ora, Avicii collaborated with artists including Madonna and Coldplay.
Former Radio 1 DJ Judge Jules, who often performed alongside him, said his biggest achievement was being the first electronic dance star to break America.
"He was the first huge commercial star," Judge Jules told the BBC. "He really became someone who couldn't go out on the street, he was so heavily recognised."
Other leading electronic artists wrote tributes to Bergling after the news of his death.
Singer Dua Lipa tweeted: "Such sad news to hear about Avicii passing. Too young and way too soon. My condolences go out to his family, friends and fans."
US band Imagine Dragons tweeted: "Working with him was one of my favourite collaborative moments. Far too young. The world was a happier and fuller place with his presence and art."
"No words can describe the sadness I'm feeling right now, hearing about Avicii passing away," offered DJ Zedd, while singer Adam Lambert, who collaborated on the track Lay Me Down, called him "a brilliant composer and a gentle spirit."
An enchanting artist
Analysis by Mark Savage, BBC Music reporter
At Avicii's last ever show in August 2016, one crazed fan climbed a 100ft-high (30m) scaffolding tower, just to get a better view.
That's not something that happens that often during a DJ set (who needs to see the stage anyway?) but it was a testament to Avicii's ability to enchant an audience.
Confetti cannons and bass drops aside, his shows encapsulated the inclusive, everyone-welcome philosophy that led him to collaborate with Coldplay, Nile Rodgers and Antony Hegarty as well as bluegrass and metal musicians in the studio.
That final show, at Ushuaia Ibiza, was a two-hour greatest hits set, featuring crowd pleasers like Levels and Wake Me Up alongside his remixes of Robyn and Dizzee Rascal.
But the DJ, who famously let the cat out of the bag when he revealed most major DJs pre-programmed their sets (comments he later walked back), was also known for dropping unexpected, whimsical tracks into his performances. A bit of Smokey Robinson here; a dash of Chicago there.
He approached it all with an energy and optimism that permeated his own recordings. It's no surprise he was one of the most beloved DJs on the circuit.
More about Avicii on BBC Music
Avicii in his own words
To Billboard Magazine in 2016: "When I look back on my life, I think: whoa, did I do that? It was the best time of my life in a sense. It came with a price - a lot of stress, a lot of anxiety for me - but it was the best journey of my life" Post-retirement on his website: "[Creating music], that is what I live for, what I feel I was born to do... The next stage will be all about my love of making music to you guys. It is the beginning of something new." Prelude to music video for hit The Nights: "When I was 16, my father said, 'You can do anything you want with your life, you just have to be willing to work hard to get it.' That's when I decided when I die, I want to be remembered for the life I live, not the money I make."
MasterClass, the premier online education platform, announced today that legendary DJ Armin van Buuren is teaching his first ever online class. The class is open for pre-enrollment starting today at www.masterclass.com/avb. Enrollment in the class is $90, or $180 per year for unlimited access to all new and existing MasterClasses with the All-Access Pass. Each enrollment option can also be given as a gift.
Armin van Buuren, one of the most influential figures in the global dance scene, has topped the Billboard charts, attracted tens of millions of worldwide listeners to his weekly radioshow “A State of Trance,” and landed a record-setting five No. 1 DJ awards from DJ Mag’s Top 100 DJs. The Grammy-nominated artist’s work has spanned major evolutions in dance music, from spinning with vinyl in small clubs to headlining global dance festivals.
In his 20th year as an artist, van Buuren will share insights about what it takes to get established in the competitive and ever-changing business of dance music. Students will get an intimate look into the artist’s creative process as van Buuren creates a track from scratch specifically for his MasterClass. Aspiring producers will learn his pillars for becoming a world-class DJ—production, performance, and promotion. The class dives into the more technical aspects of producing, including mixing, arranging, and building dance-worthy drops.
“Nowadays, to be a successful artist and DJ, it’s not enough to just know how to spin records. If you want to stand out, you need to make your own records, write music, and make remixes and mashups for your DJ sets. I’m truly excited to share my passion for producing music and DJing in my MasterClass,” said Armin van Buuren, MasterClass instructor. “It’s the first time I get to show you my secrets and tips, and everything I’ve learned in my twenty years in this business.”
“Armin is an international icon of dance music. Despite his musical genius, he has stayed humble, hard-working, earnestly connected to his fans, and has never lost sight of the joy in his work. His passion for teaching is infectious. There really is an art and science to making people dance — it has to do with sculpting sound, mixing, and arranging songs for maximum impact — that’s Armin’s mastery, and he’s certainly one of the best to ever do it,” said David Rogier, CEO and Co-Founder of MasterClass.
MasterClass is an online education company which provides classes from world-renowned instructors, making it possible for anyone to learn from the best. Each class offers a unique learning experience which includes video lessons from the instructor, interactive exercises, course materials, peer interaction, and more. All classes are available online for individual purchase at www.masterclass.com.
The post MasterClass Announces Armin van Buuren to Teach Dance Music appeared first on Trance Hub.
Source: Trance News
In a age where most are playing “live” with laptops Stevio is one of the few guys out there doing live techno with modular synths. Great to see live and a real techno iconoclast. This interview reposted from junodownload.com
It’s not easy for an artist to maintain a genuine independent ethic in this day and age. Amid the drudgery of internet exposure, whether it be shameless self-promotion or carefully marketed anonymity, there are not many who choose to make and share their music in a truly independent way. Some of Steevio’s working practices, such as making his music without a computer, are actually quite en vogue these days, but for the Sunderland-born, North Wales-dwelling techno producer this approach has been a way of life since before the dawn of house music.
A quick look at a long-neglected Discogs entry mentions his involvement in one of the UKs first electro-funk clubs, The Sidewalk, and he’ll happily recount the days spent playing guitar for acid rock outfit Dead Flowers before the first strains of techno seduced him – and all of his mates – in the space of about two months. After a number of years spent throwing free parties in Newcastle with fellow cohorts in the Roost Records acid techno collective, a crackdown in the policing of raves meant a change of scenery was needed, and Steevio and his partner Suzybee relocated to the pastoral climes of North Wales, and the Mindtours label was born.
After meeting Tom and Joe Ellis and Leif on the outdoor party circuit in the area, he nurtured their unique production talents while also steering his own music away from 130-140 bpm techno into a slower, more intricate 2-step minimalism. As a loose-limbed scene of sorts started to form around the pockets of artistry hidden out in those rolling hills, so was born the Freerotation festival.
Beginning as a 300-strong gathering in 2007 (bar one fabled test-run at an Outdoor Activity Centre in the hills), in five years the event has become one of the most highly regarded electronic music festivals in the world. The line-up is certainly niche, appealing to deeper, more experimental shades of house, techno and dubstep, but of equal importance is the atmosphere the event inspires. Held in a mansion with the Brecon Beacons as a backdrop, the weekend is the pinnacle for meaningful dance music.
Understandably, the commitments of Freerotation have meant that Steevio’s music has been sharing headspace with the logistics of a three-day festival, and so it’s been a while since a new Steevio release emerged. As of Spring this year, a new four-track Mindtours release emerged under the no-nonsense banner of Modular Techno Vol. 1, yielding the first publicly available results of his decision to switch to a modular studio set up.
“Every day I record at least three hours of what comes into my head at that moment, so I’ve got absolutely tons of material,” Steevio explains when pressed on the origins of the material onModular Techno Vol. 1. “I thought I’d put out the stuff I’ve done last year, because if I don’t it’ll just disappear and I’ll never use it. It’s slightly dated compared to the stuff I’m doing now, but I just wanted to put it out.”
There’s an undeniable rawness to the tracks on the record, which comes not least as a result of the live ethic Steevio places on his production process. All his tracks are recorded in one take straight from the hardware, as he tweaks the elements and triggers the patterns on the fly. Much of this approach is spurred on by the modular equipment he uses; in essence a self-built performance device tailored specifically to your own individual needs.
“It’s really about control over the way that the patterns come together,” Steevio explains. “I’m using similar sounds to the ones I’ve always used, but with a modular you don’t arrange the music. It’s basically different trigger patterns and fractalised sequences looping and interacting in complex ways. Everything happens in the moment, so it’s about getting as many controls in front of you as possible to do as many things as possible.”
It’s been a slow process of learning and developing for Steevio, when he had been sequencing his tracks on his computer, but the purpose of this re-shuffled work practice seems clear. “It’s about how you wire it all up so that in a live situation you think ‘oh I wouldn’t mind hearing that happen’ and you just reach out and turn the knob and it happens.”
It’s certainly a brave move to uproot your way of making music, not least for an artist who had already carved a clear sound for himself. The defining characteristic of Steevio’s music, at least for the past decade, has been intricate, inter-locking drum patterns with a pronounced funk to them, while the melodic elements come in equally lean and fluid forms. “I got bored of hearing the same 4/4 motifs like snare drums and claps on the beats 2 and 4, which is the common house method of punctuating the rhythm,” Steevio states. “I just sat down and said I’ll never ever use those things, so it leaves it open to me mixing different polyrhythms together to make new rhythms.”
Polyrhythms take average beat programming into a more complex realm, arguably made much simpler if you have a timeline sequencer on a screen to map the patterns out on. “When I went to the modular, the first thing I tried to do was keep that approach but it had to be slimmed down a bit,” Steevio admits, having ditched software sequencing and resigning his computer to a glorified tape recorder. “My tracks aren’t as complex as before, but that’s OK. I quite like the fact that it has made everything a little bit sparser. It makes you get the best out of what you’ve got.”
Steevio sits on the reams of recorded material he generates, as his understanding of the modular way develops, letting months pass by until revisiting the results and whittling them down to workable tracks. With an ever-strengthening command over his music in the instant that it’s being produced and moving away from laborious arranging and editing, it’s palpable to see the correlation with his rock band roots. “It’s just like practicing on an instrument,” Steevio enthuses. “When you first start you’re a bit clumsy. You haven’t quite got the control, but as you go along you get slicker and slicker.”
It’s safe to say there aren’t many artists producing tracks quite like Steevio at the moment, and he’s the first to acknowledge that it’s difficult at times to see where his brand of bumping, complex techno fits in at a time when Ostgut Ton and Sandwell District rule the day. In some ways the Freerotation line-ups reflect Steevio’s quandry about the lack of music that delivers what the experimental principles of techno promise.
There’s a spread to the styles to be found at Freerotation, from deep house through to a more jacking Chicago style, from hypnotic techno to tough minimalist bangers, from wild dubstep variations to ambient soundscapes. However all those elements have a common thread running through them which knits the whole weekend together. Whether it would be classed as “techno” or not, all the music played embodies that spirit, that dance music can mean more than just a soundtrack to a night out.
“I find it very difficult to programme techno people at Freerotation,” Steevio reveals, “because there’s been quite a lot of house people on over the last few years and it’s started to get that sort of reputation for being a bit more house-y than techno-y.” Be that as it may, with Detroit’s DJ Bone and Tresor mainstay Pacou prominent on the bill this year, it’s not as though proper ballsy techno isn’t being catered for. However it doesn’t detract from the fact that Steevio is still struggling to find many people meeting his expectation of what techno should be able to do.
“I’d really like to find some good techno,” he says hopefully. “Most of it’s just really formulaic, I’m wanting to hear something fresh. For me, our resident Sam Watson has got that sort of techno that I’m quite into. The deeper, more hypnotic, tripped-out sort of stuff.”
As with many parties, an aspect of Freerotation that sometimes gets overlooked by the crowd is the residents. Not so much the likes of Move D, Portable and Soulphiction who feature heavily each year, but the core collective of DJs and producers from Wales who together help steer the festival. As well as Sam’s particular brand of techno, Steevio also talks emphatically about the selector talents of Joe Ellis. “I just think ‘why is this guy not a famous DJ?’ He just seems to see through the music, and sees what a lot of other people can’t see.”
As well as Sam and Joe, the crew of musicians includes the more established likes of Tom Demac, Tom Ellis and Leif. Steevio has had a guiding hand in all of their production careers, from helping to master and release Tom Ellis and Leif’s first vinyl appearance, to inviting Tom Demac to bolster some of his early releases in the Mindtours studio. Even with individual careers, everyone from this close-knit group of friends remains a part of the loosely-formed Freerotation Collective. However the festival itself doesn’t always provide the best platform to fully appreciate the combination of their sounds as a unit, what with all the peaks and troughs of the rest of the weekend in between. Now though additional events are planned for later in the year, and the sonic identity of the collective has a real chance to establish itself.
First up will be Freerotation Tenerife 2012, which is taking place on the last weekend in September. While the Canary Islands might seem an unlikely destination after Wales, the opportunity has come about through an old friend of Steevio and Suze’s who lives on the island. After years spent talking about it, a site was found and a 24-hour party has been planned, running from the Saturday afternoon to the Sunday afternoon with a pre-party the Thursday before. “It’s starting off modest and we’ll see how it goes,” Steevio explains. “The site’s out in the country, and it’s good for a big party, so if it works out this year we could make it into a proper Freerotation.”
The party will be a collaboration between Freerotation and Mazaribah, a local cultural organisation. As such, the Freerotation-curated acts will be bolstered by some local artists too. “Obviously we had to vet it a little bit,” says Steevio. “We didn’t want just anyone to turn up and play something, so we had a little listen. At the same time we didn’t want to just come steaming in going ‘here’s Freerotation’, we wanted to try and make it a collaboration.”
Keeping up the tendency of the event to choose unconventional locations, the next stop for Freerotation will be Blackpool in December. One Of These Days is being billed as “the festival of festivals”, bringing a wealth of successful leftfield bashes such as Bloc and Primavera together for a weekend in the Winter Gardens complex on the North West coast. Instantly it’s clear this is quite a move for an event such as Freerotation, which has kept itself relatively off the radar over the years, so it wasn’t without negotiation that the collaboration came about.
“I wasn’t going to do it at first, it seemed too far removed from our underground leanings,” says Steevio of the initial proposal. “I sent an email out to all the guys in the collective and everyone wanted to do it, so I talked to the organisers a bit more about our concerns about it being a sponsored event. They’ve been really reasonable the whole time. There wont be any sponsorship signs in our room, so I’ve made sure that it’s Freerotation-friendly before I agreed to do it.”
With just twelve hours to play with at the event, the line-up for the room needs to be kept quite streamlined, and as with Tenerife, most of the artists will be from the collective, providing a platform for them to operate more closely. There will of course be some choice guests included, but the intention is to let the residents do their thing.
As for Steevio’s own musical endeavours, there’s plenty of material ready to be pored over and fashioned into a release, but still his main focus has been developing his modular set up. From its previous appearances at Freerotation, the sheer scale of the machinery made it seem nigh on impossible for a gigging situation, and yet Steevio’s entire approach is geared towards the music being made in the immediate moment.
“Before it was taking me an hour and a half to set everything up,” he says, “but now I’ve bought a multi-core it’s gonna take twenty minutes. I am working towards it being an actual live show.” Due to the fragile nature of the equipment, flying is out of the question for any gigs Steevio and Suze get for their audio-visual show, although opportunities await them across Europe and as far as Japan. However a plan is being hatched to get a van and traverse the continent, once again harking back to Steevio’s earliest musical explorations.
“Some of the best fun I ever had was in the bands,” he recalls. “We chucked the gear in the van and drove around Europe, slept on floors and met loads of people. You tend to get to know people better that way. Sometimes I think the whole flying around, going and staying in a hotel, it’s a little bit unfriendly and cold.”
It’s just another prime example of the independent approach that typifies Steevio’s attitude to what he does. While the music he makes and that he’s most connected with is relatively critical, there’s no air of pretension to be found anywhere. After all you wouldn’t work this hard for it for this long if you weren’t in it for the right reasons.
Words: Oli Warwick
Main image: Tasha Park
Reposted from junodownload.com
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Ben Klock Plays a wide ranging set that goes from the subsumed to the intense for the crowd at the boiler Room Berlin including an enthusiastically dancing Nina Kravitz
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In celebration of this years Amsterdam Dance Event which is occurring pretty much right now. I thought Id post up one of my favourite live sets from last years event.
Black Asteroid – Live at the ADE CLR night 2011
Black Asteroid – Live at CLR Night – Studio 80 – ADE [2011-10-19]
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