News \ News \ Scene

Weekend Primer #101

The week's dance music news in handy bite-sized pieces

2018 Jan 05     
2 Bit Thugs

This week: Carl Cox, Coachella, tech-house takes over Las Vegas, Diplo, Midland, Low Steppa, Spotify, Welsh ravers keep it tidy and more

1. Happy birthday to BBC Radio 1's Essential Mix, which is 25 years old. Well, it will be on 30 October, which is the actual 25th anniversary of the first broadcast... but they're starting the celebrations early this weekend, with an Essential Mix from none other than Carl Cox [pictured]. Cox is a fitting choice to kick off the anniversary: the UK veteran did his first Essential Mix way back in 1994, and was also chosen to helm dance music radio's most esteemed slot on Millennium Eve back in 1999. Tune in from 4am tonight/tomorrow morning.

2. Las Vegas casino/resort Wynn Las Vegas has announced three new DJ residencies for 2018, to join an existing line-up that includes Diplo, Afrojack and The Chainsmokers. So who's up next: Marshmello? Steve Aoki? DJ Snake? Er, no - the new residents are actually Solomun, Black Coffee and Jamie Jones. A Wynn spokesman told Mixmag: "Tech- house continues to rise in popularity in the United States and abroad, and we look forward to bringing and expanding this music style into our programming."

3. Speaking of EDM superstars a minute, though, Diplo and Mark Ronson have teamed up for a new project called Silk City. The pair are said to be working on a disco-oriented album under the new alias - and will be making their Silk City performance debut at the Governor's Ball in New York in June, where they'll appear alongside the likes of Eminem, Jack White and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs.

4. Back to Jamie Jones now, because he's one of the DJs chosen to headline Brooklyn nightclub Output's fifth birthday celebrations on the weekend of 27-28 January. Onur Özer gets the festivities going on Thu 25 Jan, Jamie headlines on Fri 26 joined by Visionquest's Ryan Crosson, Seth Troxler and Craig Richards top the bill on Sat 27 and then on Sun 28 the weekend's completed by a set from local lad and all-time house legend Louie Vega.

5. Midland will be the Friday night resident at Brixton's Phonox in February. He'll play all night long on 2 and 23 February, while on 9 February he'll be joined by Ruf Dug and Dan Beaumont will be his guest on 16 February.

6. UK bass house fave and Simma Black label boss Low Steppa is heading off to the US for a tour. The Boiling Point tour kicks off at Grasshopper in Ferndale, MI on 11 Jan, then stops in Philadelphia, PA (12 Jan), Lakeland, FL (13 Jan), Las Vegas, NV (16 Jan) and Hollywood, CA (19 Jan), before ending at the Monarch Theater in Phoenix, AZ on 20 Jan. It's not too late to get tickets for most gigs, so if you're reading this in the US, here's a mix Low Steppa has done to get you in the mood...


7. Several festivals made line-up announcements this week. First up: Coachella over in sunny California, which takes place on 13-14 and 21-22 April, and for which tickets went on sale today. There's the usual host of big names from the worlds of rock, pop and urban music, including headliners Beyonce, David Byrne, Odesza and Jamiroquai, but you can also catch the likes of The Black Madonna, Jackmaster, Kölsch, Joseph Capriati, Omar S, that Jamie Jones bloke again, Maceo Plex, Black Coffee and Motor City Drum Ensemble.

8. Meanwhile in Costa Rica, the holistically inclined Envision Festival returns to the Uvita jungle on 22-25 Feb, with the yoga workshops and heated debates about raw food soundtracked by - among others - DJ Tennis, Bob Moses and Troyboi.

9. Back home in the UK, a bunch of names have been added to the bill for the southwest's brand new D&B festival Shockout, which makes its debut at the Bath & West Showground on 24 February. Now joining the previously announced likes of Hype & Hazard, High Contrast, My Nu Leng, London Elektricity, SASASAS and Danny Byrd will be Fabio & Grooverider, Randall, Mampi Swift, The Prototypes and Critical Music boss Kasra.

10. Finally on the festies tip, Craft Beer Rising - which sees some 175 worldwide breweries showcasing their wares at London's Truman Brewery on 22-24 February - might not sound like iDJ's cup of tea. Beer. Whatever. But that's only cos we haven't told you yet that while you're there, taking tiny connoisseur-like sips of fine ales and not getting bladdered, honest, you can also check out DJ sets from Don Letts, A Guy Called Gerald, Krafty Kuts and Daddy G (of Massive Attack). Boozeyakasha!

11. Spotify has finally added grime to its list of genre categories, a mere 15 years or so after that would probably have been a good idea and a mere 10 years into the streaming service's lifetime. Still, better late than never, eh?

12. And finally... after an unlicensed New Year's rave in a disused factory outside Pontypool in Wales was closed down by police (albeit only after 12 hours), Mixmag reports that locals were shocked to see the very same ravers returning to the site the next day. To clean up. Nice touch, Welsh peeps!

Carl Cox pic: Vision Seven





Tags: Carl Cox, Radio 1, Essential Mix, Jamie Jones, Solomun, Black Coffee, Wynn Las Vegas, tech house, tech-house, Diplo, Mark Ronson, Silk City, Governor's Ball, Output, Brooklyn, Ryan Crosson, Seth Troxler, Craig Richards, Louie Vega, Midland, Phonox, Ruf Dug, Low Steppa, Simma Black, Coachella, Envision Festival, Shockwave, Fabio, Grooverider, Randall, Mampi Swift, The Prototypes, Critical Music, Kasra, Craft Beer Rising, Don Letts, A Guy Called Gerald, Krafty Kuts, Daddy G, The Black Madonna, Jackmaster