This week in dance music: The Chainsmokers broke the record for the highest ever attendance at a show (18,798 people) at the L.A. State Historic Park, we spoke with the Founder of Burning Man’s Mayan Warrior art car, which burned down this past April, Diplo announced the death of his mother and Alesso collab’d with BTS’ Jung Kook.
And of course, there’s new music too. These are the best new dance tracks of the week.
ARTBAT, “Coming Home”
The Label: Warner Music Group
The Spiel: John Martin (of “Don’t Your Worry Child” fame) lends the same intensely anthemic mood to the latest from Ukrainian duo ARTBAT. Released in conjunction with Independence Day Of Ukraine, which the country celebrated yesterday (August 24) — and which obviously takes on deep meaning given the country’s ongoing conflict with Russia — the song obliquely addresses the war, with lyrics about coming home to your mother, your brother, your sister and your lover. “We’ll walk in the streets like we used to do,” sings Martin, “there will be something new to believe in.” On the track the Kyiv-based duo expertly balance progressive and mainstage sounds, even adding a children’s choir for maximum poignancy.
The Artists Say: “This is a very personal record for both ourselves and John,” ARTBAT wrote on Instagram, “and we’ve written this with our homeland in the forefront of our minds, with a message of hope and positivity for all.”
The Vibe: Tearjerker.
John Summit With MKLA, “Fade Out”
The Label: Off the Grid/Darkroom Records
The Spiel: The commercial trance resurgence launched earlier this year by Calvin Harris extends today with John Summit’s “Fade Out.” A collaboration with silky-voiced Toronto-based singer MKLA, the track is urgent, sophisticated and as earworm-ey (in a good way) as the rest of most recent Summit’s output — namely “Escape” with Hayla and his edit of Kaskade and deadmau5’s “I Remember.”
On Twitter, Summit’s label Off the Grid noted that “Fade Out” will be “our last single as off the grid records,” indicating a name change is coming after Summit and Off the Grid faced recent legal issues in regards to a California-based event promoter also called Off the Grid. It’s an apt way to fade out, indeed.
The Artist Says: “Been working on this one for a while.. it’s a trance inspired tune hope u guys like,” Summit wrote on Twitter.
The Vibe: 4 a.m. on the dance floor.
The Label: CircoLoco Records
The Spiel: Brazilian producer Mochakk has been steadily rising this year, an upswing that gets a major boost today with his latest, the wonderfully unhinged “Jealous.” The late Loleatta Holloway does a lot of the heavy lifting here, with the producer heavily sampling the singer’s 1977 song “Dreamin,” weaving her insanely powerful vocals with his bounce-ey, funky house production that’s fun, fresh and accessible and — as evidenced by this moment from his Coachella set this past April — simply just slaps.
The Artist Says: “If you asked Pedro from 2 years ago if he believed he would be announcing his very own release with [CircoLoco Records] and [Rockstar Games] in 2023, he would definitely tell you to cut the bulls–t! This track has probably been my most anticipated release so far, with the most support pre-release and I’m so stoked to say it’s finally coming out.”
The Vibe: No bulls–t.
ISOxo & Ninajirachi, “SHYPOP”
The Label: 88Rising Records
The Spiel: Emerging San Diego producer ISOxo throws the kitchen sink at it on his latest, “SHYPOP,” melding drum & bass and hyperpop and hints of mainstage and hardstyle into a very high BPM production that’s simultaneously hectic and spare. Vocals come from Australian fav Ninajirachi, who sings, “I want to be smarter, but I don’t know where to start. I want to say things from the heart, but my words come out so wrong, I stumble.” While the sound is far out, the sentiment is widely relatable. The track comes from ISOxo’s forthcoming debut album, kidsgonemad!.
The Artist Says: “Creating SHYPOP came from a sentimental place that’s been driving the meaning behind some of my music. It touches on the insecurities I’ve felt both as an artist and in life, wanting to push myself to be better.”
The Vibe: Machinistic, deeply human, totally fun.
Nosaj Thing, Jacques Greene & Ouri, “Too Close”
The Label: LUCKYME
The Spiel: L.A. favorite Nosaj Thing links with Toronto mainstay Jacques Greene and Montreal-based producer, DJ and multi-instrumentalist Ouri. Together they deliver something as sophisticated and vibey as you’d expect, with “Too Close,” melding D&B and deep house into a mood at once mellow and urgent.
The Vibe: Pretty, with a hint of heartbreak.
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