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    Goldrush Festival partners with Surreal to bring fan-artist experiences to life

    Following a successful first phase lineup release for its inaugural edition, Goldrush Festival captured the attention of many  with its eclectic lineup encompassing a wide array of genres across the dance music spectrum. The never-before-seen Arizona festival has since partnered with Surreal, an organization dedicated to working with festivals to create unique fan-artist experiences, that benefits the charity of their choice.

    Fans have the opportunity to enter into five special experiences: a Wild West photoshoot with Marshmello, backstage BBQ with Claude VonStroke, skydiving with Ghastly, an on-stage soundcheck with Keys N Krates and a meet-and-greet with Droeloe and San Holo. Available for entry from October 26-November 10, donation tiers start at one entry for $5.00, six entries for $20.00 or 25 entries for $50.00 into any individual experience. Winners for each experience will win VIP passes to Goldrush for themselves and a friend, along with their respective artist experience. The net proceeds from the collaboration will go towards Childhelp, a charitable organization that assists abused and neglected children.

    Set to take place in Arizona November 18-19, Goldrush brings a riveting, wild west experience to its attendees, complete with themed stages and and premium VIP experiences.

    Donate to enter the contest here.

    Surreal x GoldRush

    General admission, VIP and single day passes are available online for purchase. 

    Read more:

    Goldrush Festival reveals eclectic, inaugural lineup and stage details

    Marshmello & Selena Gomez’s “Wolves” is an emotionally evocative crossover

    British law student dies after consuming lethal dose of MDMA at Big Weekend festival

    Source: Dancing Astronaut


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  • We source our news and reviews from a number of sources.  From our local volunteer contributors (writers and reviewers) around Australia, to syndicated news sources including Your EDM, Dancing Astronaut, MixMag, By The Wavs, MNML, No Dough Music, Techno Kittens, Drum and Bass News, BBC, Junkee, and Trance Family.  Where the article has been sourced via syndication, you will find a link at the bottom of the article to the original source.

    Our local volunteer contributors are creative people who are passionate about the dance music and club scene in Australia and want to share their passion with others.  If you feel you fit into this category, we would love to hear from you!  Send us an application to become a contributor (writer / reviewer) by visiting https://ozclubbers.com.au/application

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    • Adam Madd
      By Adam Madd
      Ultra Australia has announced that Rukes – often referred to as #1 DJ Photographer in the ‘Greatest Music Photographers Right Now’ by Complex – will be coming to Melbourne & Sydney for the festival.
       
      Rukes’ photos have been published by the likes of Rolling Stone, Spin, Vanity Fair, Q, MTV, LA Times, Forbes, Elektro, DJ Mag, US Weekly and USA Today, just to name a few! His worldwide client list includes artists such as Zedd, Above & Beyond, Excision, Deadmau5, Swedish House Mafia (as well as each member Axwell, Sebastian Ingrosso and Steve Angello), Calvin Harris, Avicii, Skrillex, Hardwell, Tommy Lee, Alesso, Steve Aoki, REZZ, Tiësto and many more!  Not to mention shooting for some of the biggest festivals & events in the world such as Ultra Music Festival, Coachella, Red Rocks, Holy Ship, EDC and many more!
       
      We here at Ozclubbers don't often get to chat to the photographers, so when we get to chat with someone who is considered #1 in his field, we naturally were pretty excited!
       
      Ladies and Gentlemen, let me introduce to you, Drew Ressler - aka Rukes!
       
      As a start, can you tell our readers a couple of brief things about yourself?
      My name is Drew, but most people know me by Rukes. I’m based in Los Angeles and I have been taking photos of dance music for almost 15 years now. I currently photograph DJs and festivals as a full time job, travelling all over the world.
       
      How did you get your start in photography?
      I got a point-and-shoot for my birthday in 2003, and ended up taking it to some club events in New York for fun. When I moved to Los Angeles in 2004, I was a little more interested in photography so I decided to get a basic DSLR setup and see how that worked out.
       
      What was your first camera?
      Technically my first one was a Canon PowerShot G3X point-and-shoot, but my first DSLR was a Canon 20D.
       
      You started in the scene doing club photography, do you remember which club was your first gig and when?
      Of course, it’s still up on my website! Everything is there! My first actual event I went to photograph was BT at Avalon NY in September 2003, but my first actual paid gig was one of the Avalon LA gigs in 2005, I forgot which.
       
      What drove you to change from club photography to focusing mostly on the artists?
      When I started doing club photography in the early 2000’s, 99% of the galleries I saw online were pictures of clubgoers and hot girls, and maybe one blurry pic of the DJ. Since I was a fan of a lot of the DJs that played, I was wondering why nobody focused on the musicians. Of course club owners generally want to show off beautiful people to entice more people to come, but I wanted to give something to fans of the music by providing good quality photos of the actual DJs.
       
      How much balance do you put into a gig of just a photo of the artist vs photos of the artist and the crowd in the background?
      It depends on the DJ really. I generally try to only get 3-5 shots of the DJ up close, unless there is reason otherwise, like they are very active. It’s tough to get unique shots of a person DJing.
       
      What was your “big break” (if you had one)?  I.e., what gig were you at and came to a realisation of something like “holy shit, I’ve made it, this is where I want to be in life”?
      Probably when I started working with Deadmau5 and he started bringing me on tour. When I ended up doing my first international touring gigs, I was just like “Ok, this is amazing”.
       
      You’ve taken some photos of some massive artists over the years.  Can you name a two or three who have left an impact on you and why?
      I would have to say first and foremost is Hybrid. They produce my favorite music, and Mike Truman was one of the first people that recognized I had an eye for photography.
       
      Sasha would be another great one. Back in the early 2000’s, his shows were always EXTREMELY dark and he hated anyone using flash. So I had to develop and learn extreme low-light photography, and even get a low-light lens. That helped push my photography very early on.
       
      A third one might be Swedish House Mafia. Usually when I’m taking pics of a DJ, it’s one or at most two people. Having to photograph three distinct personalities is difficult because in every photo of them, you have to make sure all three look good. If one doesn’t, the photo is trashed no matter how good the rest of it looked. So it really helped me develop my timing and looking at how to recognize what people are doing or are going to do, physically.
       
      How often are you asked to take “private” photos by big name artists backstage doing things their promotions team would frown heavily at?  Can you share some stories on this (without giving away any details that might hint who the artists are or where it took place)?
      I mean there aren’t really any situations where I am asked to take shady photos, it’s more of something that just happens during the course of photography. Usually if it’s extremely bad, the artist will laugh and I’ll just delete the photo immediately. Most of the time they like the pic, but don’t want it public, so I save it in a separate subdirectory and just send the artist the photo themselves. This could be anything from a funny face, to drinking when they shouldn’t be, etc.
       
      What would be the greatest part of your job?
      Travelling the world. I’m at the point where I love long flights without having to deal with social media and can just watch movies and play videogames. Then enjoying long layovers in nice airport lounges. Of course then collecting tons of miles and elite status too (I’m actually on track to be top tier in OneWorld, Star Alliance and SkyTeam by the end of the year).
       
      Then arriving in the country to experience the culture and food almost makes my job like a vacation.
       
      And what would you consider the greatest challenge to doing what you do?
      Probably improving my craft bit by bit. I must balance a fine line of keeping on doing what I’m comfortable with, and pushing my boundaries a little, while keeping working. Stuff such as refining my photography to end up with less photos that are a higher quality is always a goal. I have gone from hundreds of festival pics a day when I started to maybe around a hundred or so, and I keep tightening it.
      You use Canon gear, why do you prefer Canon?
      At the time, the Canon 20D was considered the better camera body than what Nikon had, and Canon had better low-light lenses. Nowadays Nikon is usually considered to have slightly better bodies, but Canon still has better lenses.
       
      What computer hardware and software do you use for processing your photos?
      Right now I have a 2016 MacBook Pro and I edit in Lightroom Classic CC. Since I travel so much, I exclusively must edit my photos on my MacBook Pro and abandoned editing galleries at home, just for conformity sake.
       
      How important do you believe a social media profile (mostly Instagram) is to a photographer’s public profile?
      It’s necessary nowadays as it shows a window into the photographer’s life and doubles as a portfolio. At the same time, it’s always difficult dealing with the horrible reach most social media has nowadays, though.
       
      You’ve travelled the world doing what you love and seeing how wild some parties can be in different cities.  Can you name two or three cities that have stood out to you and why?
      Tokyo is my favorite city in the world by far, I always love going there. The crowd is always fanatical.
       
      Other than that being a personal choice, there are just a lot of cities that have crazy crowds. Ultra Korea last year had one of the craziest crowds I have ever seen at a festival. Mexico, India, Indonesia and more always have active crowds.
       
      Which cities do you believe the electronic music scene is booming?
      That’s a tough one since it’s kind of in a holding pattern right now. Most places are set in their popularity and continuing. Places like South America and China which had a huge boom are starting to lessen events due to government pressure. Australia is a good opposite where for years it’s been without major festivals, and now Ultra Australia and Festival X are poised to bring it back, even though the government might not like that too much.
       
      Still, Asia is still where most electronic music is booming. Bangkok, smaller cities in China, Japan are all still growing very well with more and more events.
       
      Our own Sydney has recently been stripped of much of its electronic music culture due to political interests under the visor of safety.  In your worldly travels, have you seen this in other cities, how did it impact your gig in those cities?
      A few places. China and most of South America are the major places where this has happened. You used to be able to easily do gigs in places like Chile, Argentina and Brazil but it’s a bit difficult. China, especially Beijing, is very difficult. I have done festivals where they only are allowed to sell very few tickets compared to the venue size.
       
      You probably get asked this a lot, but what advice would you give to someone who is in their early stages of photography and are hoping to stand out from the rest?
      Always work on photos the way you want to. Only take inspiration from other photographers. Don’t copy them unless it’s learning how they did it. People want unique work and not work they can get from someone else.
       
      Thanks Rukes for taking the time to chat with us today!
       
       
       
       
      Ultra Australia is touring on Sat 23rd Feb 2019 and Sun 24th Feb 2019 in Melbourne and Sydney respectively.  Tickets are available by visiting https://ultraaustralia.com
        You can see more of Rukes' work by visiting http://www.rukes.com/ or see some of his work from Ultra Australia 2018 below.
       





    • Adam Madd
      By Adam Madd
      South Africa’s prime DJ/producer Das Kapital has remixed Bengali singer Arzeen’s new single on LA based, world influenced label Pinkturban. Titled Prem De, the single is a refreshing serving of Bangladeshi music. Das Kaptial’s intoxicating, bass heavy and club friendly remix offers something completely unique and is sure to set dancefloors alight in South Africa and beyond. 
       
      Das Kapital is a DJ, producer, and radio host with a vision. His music defies boundaries by traversing House, UK Garage, Techno, Acid, Breaks and Bass Music, warping genres with a distinct forward-thinking vibe. The Cape Town based artist has released on a plethora of labels including This Ain’t Bristol, World Famous Headquarters, Punks Music and Saucy Records, while he’s been supported by the likes of A-Trak, Diplo, Oliver Heldens, Anna Lunoe, and many more. The result is a premier national reputation that’s seen Das Kapital nominated for three awards at the 2018 DMASA (Dance Music Awards South Africa) – plus winning Best EDM single in 2017 - not to mention his weekly three-hour national radio show on 5FM called In Das We Trust, which has been running for 4 years. 
       
      It speaks volumes about Das Kapital’s artistic vision that he has teamed with Arzeen for a cosmopolitan remix that glues South African underground dance music with an Eastern musical form. A highly respected singer, songwriter and lyricist, the now LA based Arzeen has written music for film and has been personally invited to the likes of Las Vegas, Santa Barbara, and New York to share his entrancing voice and culture. 
       
      Das Kapital’s remix is as club-driven as it is nuanced. Arzeen’s melodious vocals offer a memorable flip to the usual dance-floor tropes club-goers are used to and is sure to become a regular spun gem by DJs far and wide.
        
      Arzeen – Prem De (Das Kapital Remix) is out now!
       
       
      LINKS
      Pinkturban
      http://pinkturban.com
       
      Das Kapital
      https://www.facebook.com/iamDasKapital
      https://twitter.com/iamdaskapital
      http://soundcloud.com/daskapital        
      http://www.youtube.com/user/DasKapitalDisco     
      http://instagram.com/iamdaskapital          
       
      Arzeen
       
      https://www.facebook.com/arzeenmusic/
      https://www.youtube.com/user/arzeenmohammadkamal
       
      BUY / STREAM
      https://www.beatport.com/track/prem-de-das-kapital-remix/11440415
       
       
       

       
       
       
    • Adam Madd
      By Adam Madd
      SKIY has brought her authentic techy house sound to world-renowned Spinnin’ Deep. Titled Quiggin, the club-focused single sees SKIY flex her deft production abilities, showing the world her credibility not only behind the decks but in the studio as well. Brimming with energy and musicality, Quiggin is SKIY’s first release of 2019, kicking off what is poised to be her biggest year to date.
       
      Since bursting onto the scene in 2017 with a slew of releases, SKIY has kept herself busy both as an international DJ and blossoming producer, crafting a vibrant dancefloor sound. She’s DJed acclaimed shows in Germany alongside the likes of Timmy Trumpet and Tiesto while global superstar Oliver Heldens snapped up her last single, Who Got The Keys, singing it to his Heldeep Records. Strong preferential support has already come from the likes of The Magician, EDX, Chocolate Puma, Dillon Francis, and many more. 
       
      SKIY’s mother was a jazz singer while she herself is a trained pianist. A rich musical upbringing shared between Brazil, Germany and Croatia has enabled SKIY to pour a range of influences into her music, imbuing it with soulful grooves and clever musicality. 
       
      Quiggin makes no exception. Jittering drum patterns give way to bubbling synths and swirling fx while infectious vocal samples crescendo into a minimal hands-in-the-air moment. Underpinned by memorable arpeggios and quirky percussive melodies, Quiggin is sure to find its way into the record collection of the world’s biggest stars, taking SKIY’s own glittering career to new heights in the process. 
        
      SKIY - Quiggin is out now!
       
      LINKS
      https://www.facebook.com/iamskiy/

      https://www.facebook.com/iamskiy/ https://www.instagram.com/itsskiy/
      https://twitter.com/iamskiy
       
      BUY / STREAM:
      https://spinnindeep.release.link/quiggin
       
       
       
    • Adam Madd
      By Adam Madd
      Alex Preston has produced a new EP for Sonny Fodera’s growing Solotoko label. Titled Ain’t Gonna Cry, the EP sees the Australian DJ / producer showcase his exciting new style of underground house music, which fuses tasteful guitar licks and disco tinged funky basslines. Accompanied by a new live show that utilises Alex Preston’s virtuosic talents as an instrumentalist, Ain’t Gonna Cry is set to kick off 2019 with a bang for the Sydney-native whose career keeps growing year on year.  
       
      Since bursting onto the scene a few years back with his deft production abilities and raw aptitude for musicality, Alex Preston has firmly established himself at the helm of Australia’s underground house scene. He regularly appears on the ARIA club charts and has released on Armada Deep, BMKLTSCH RCRDS, and RCA (Sony US), among others. He’s picked up support from the like of Pete Tong, Fatboy Slim, Idris Elba, Oliver Heldens, and many more, while his live show is setting dancefloors alight all over Australia with an innovative blend of live guitar licks and mixing. 
       
      Alex is as comfortable in the studio as he is behind the decks and it shows with Ain’t Gonna Cry. The title track layers soulful disco samples on top of deep and funky bass lines while cascading grooves weave in and out of the beat. I Know I Got occupies darker territory but not with inspired guitar solos while Nobody Else sees Alex inject jumping beats next to tastefully crafted vocals. 
       
      Brimming with musicality and vitality, Ain’t Gonna Cry marks an exciting new direction for Alex Preston’s ever-evolving sound and the stat of an extremely successful 2019.
      Alex Preston – Ain’t Gonna Cry is out 11th January
       
      Links:
      https://www.facebook.com/DJAlexPreston/
      https://twitter.com/djalexpreston
      https://soundcloud.com/djalexpreston
       
    • Adam Madd
      By Adam Madd
      Dr Packer, aka Greg Packer, is well known amongst the music scene for his remixes & edits of classic tunes from 70’s, 80’s, and 90’s Soul, Disco, Funk, Hip Hop & Reggae.  Dr Packer has quickly become a mainstay in the sets of some of the biggest names in the disco world, with this support helping him to be voted #1 in the Traxsource Top 20 NuDisco Artists for two consecutive years running.
      Dr Packer is one of the four main headliners playing at Sunset Safari at Albert Park Greenfields on New Year’s Day, alongside DJ Spen and local Melbourne heavyweight, Boogs.  Leading up to his New Years Day set, he takes a moment to have a chat with Ozclubbers' founder @Adam Madd.
       

      AM: Hi Greg, thanks for taking the time to chat with us here at Ozclubbers! First up, something that I’ve personally been curious about.  How did the “Dr” part of your name come about?
      DP: My real name is Greg Packer which makes my initials 'GP', also an old friend years ago used to call me 'the disco doctor' cos he also knew about my obsession with collecting disco & soul records.
       
      AM: You’ve got a well-known name amongst the Jungle and D&B scene in WA as Greg Packer, but what inspired you to start playing soul, disco, funk, and reggae as Dr Packer?
      DP: A lot of people didn't realise but I was already doing it on the side, just not producing it under the name 'Dr Packer'. I had a residency at a night here called 'The Funk Club' and did events under the name 'Boogaloo', this was me playing strictly all disco vinyl sets. I kept it on the down low as the diehard DnB fans would have started to think I was jumping ship, it was only when I decided to start producing it that I felt I needed to change my name, I wanted to keep my surname and just change the first part and start fresh under a new name.
       
      AM: How dramatically the Perth scene changed since you first started playing in 1990?  Would you say it’s for good or bad, and why?
      DP: I think there are pros and cons, for e.g. back in 1990 people would be clubbing without mobile phones or any type of social media distractions therefore all attention was on the DJ, but then the technology these days is amazing playing off USB sticks and the music production sound quality is a lot better than back in 1990. Plus, in those days you'd rarely get the big festivals like we get now. There are probably loads of good and bad points if you really think about it, but I think for me I prefer now.
       
      AM: Your disco remixes have been referred to as beefier, fatter version of the original. While it’s probably hard to select just a couple from the vast remix repertoire you have, can you list a couple of remixes you’ve done that stand out to you as favourites, and tell us briefly what inspired you to remix them?
      DP: The ones that really stand out for me is my version of Donna Summer 'I feel love', which I did back in 2015. It was the one mix that was nailed straight away, and I still play it most sets now. It was a request from my mother, so I had to do it, but I am so glad I did as it ended up being one of my fave edits really beefed up and sounds amazing on a good system. Also, my version of 'Grandmaster Melle Mel - white lines' seems to be very popular and I get lots of love and requests for it. Just one day I thought about doing something other than straight up disco, and a lot of those early hip hop tunes were heavily disco influenced to begin with. I wasn't sure if it would get accepted on the dancefloor to begin with but now it’s often one of the biggest moments in my sets.
       
      AM: You’ve been compared to the likes of Hot Toddy, Late Nite Tuff Guy, Joey Negro, Greg Wilson, Norman Jay, and Fingerman.  What does it feel like to be in the same spectrum as these musical masterminds?
      DP: Amazing !!!!!  I mean I looked up to these guys when I first started out doing this and now, I'm often on the bill with them. I still feel like a teenage groupie around them, but I try to hold it together and remind myself I’m a 46 year old man !!!! haha 
       
      AM: You’ve just recently reached the no.1 spot on Traxsource’s top100 NuDisco artists, for the second year running!  (Congratulations!)  How did you feel when you heard of that achievement?
      DP: Total shock !!! Last year they requested a high res pic of me the day before so it kind of gave the game away that I won it, and this year I didn't get that email, so I convinced myself I didn't get it, so when I saw that I had again I got a massive buzz.
       
      AM: Where did your musical journey actually start?  What inspired you to start DJing?
      DP: I saw the band 'Technotronic' play at a concert in 1989 and they had a half time break, and they said there DJ will play for half n hr, so I watched him from a balcony above as he was cutting, scratching and mixing old hip hop, funk & house tunes. He was amazing, and that moment I had that thought in my head 'I need to do this', so by October '89 I'd saved enough money to get my first pair of decks, which means by Oct 2019 it will be 30 years for me as a DJ. Sounds like an excuse for a party !!!! 
       
      AM: What was your first record?
      DP: Grandmaster Flash - The Message. It was in the charts at the time (1982) and my older brother bought it for me as a birthday present, the vinyl collection (or should I say addiction) grew from that moment.
       
      AM: Can you list your top 5 records at the moment and maybe something about each that attracts you to them?
      DP:
      Qwestlife - Hit It Off (Glitter Box)
      Sometimes I think cover versions can ruin a track, but in this case I like it as much if not a tad more than the original, fantastic update !!!
      Spencer Morales ft Tasha LaRae - I Need Your Lovin (Opolopo Remix) (Quantize Recordings) 
      Pretty Much for the same reasons as the above tune, a cover version done extremely well and Opolopo nailed the new baseline  
      Patrice Rushen - Never Gonna Give You Up 'Joey Negro Mix' (Z Records)
      I’ve been playing this for a little while now and I can’t leave it alone, love the new chords Joey added and a great production update to an already classic tune 
      Lenny Fontana & Shirley Lites - Fire 'Dr Packer Remix' (Midnight Riot) 
      I felt so privileged to be asked to remix a tune by 2 people that I admire very much 'Lenny Fontana' and 'Shirley Lites' who delivered a real authentic sounding disco number that sounded like it could have been released in 1979, I put my usual Dr Packer stamp on it
      Slam Dunk'd , Chromeo  - No Price 'Art Of Tones Remix' (Glitterbox) 
      I only just found out this was an 'Arthur Baker' production which surprised me, but a great nice chuck of modern disco smoothed out a tad by 'Art Of Tones' love it !!!! 
        AM: What is in the production pipeline for Dr Packer?  What can we expect to hear from you in 2019 and onwards?
      DP: As we speak I am working on forthcoming material for 'Glitterbox, Big Love Records, Masterworks' and hoping to get a rework album released for next year done officially, which is a lot of hard work but I’m up for the challenge. The tracks are ready to go, its more about the licensing side of things as I no longer wish to be looking over my shoulder.
       
      AM: Can you recommend a couple of artists that our readers should be keeping an eye on?
      DP: Nobody brand new has jumped out at me this year, but one artist 'Michael Gray' who is one half of 'Full Intention' has been sending me some stuff this year that has really impressed me, and I have supported everything he has sent thru. I look forward to the next inbox each time. Also the great Joey Negro has been killing me this year to the point where I have to force myself to not play too many of his tunes in my set. I could easily play a whole set of his stuff and I don't think I am alone in saying that.
       
       
      AM: And finally, tell us something that we don’t know about Dr Packer?
      DP: I used to be a brickies labourer. I was often referred to as 'The Dog' or 'The Beast' by my fellow tradesmen which was general building site banter. The supervisors and bosses would walk on site and say hello to all the tradesmen, and just walk past me (the labourer) as you wasn't even worthy of a 'Hello'. But now I’m often picked up from the airport in a limousine with a personal driver holding a sign saying 'Dr Packer', and then driven to a fancy hotel and sign autographs and take photos after my set. Complete madness !!!! 
       
      Thanks again for taking the time to speak with us, Greg!
       
       
       

      Dr Packer appears on the headline bill alongside DJ Spen and Boogs at Sunset Safari NYD, as well as a solid array of local support acts!
      Tickets are still available via link below:
      https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/new-years-day-at-greenfields-albert-park-sunset-safari-tickets-52515211411
       
      Facebook event:  https://www.facebook.com/events/269052340624628/
       
      LISTEN:
       
       
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