This week in dance music: Tomorrowland dropped the lineup for its 2023 festival this summer, Beatport announced that it’s acquired a majority stake in the International Music Summit, HARD Summer announced a return to downtown Los Angeles after a 10 year absence, Moody Jones was named the GM of Dance at EMPIRE (a newly created role that follows EMPIRE’s acquisition of Dirtybird last fall,), Skream, Tiga and DJ Minx lead the lineup for Desert Hearts’ 2023 event, Tiësto, Tate McRae and Joel Corry experienced a come-up on Hot Dance/Electronic Songs via the trio’s new “10:35” remix, and we analyzed the dance/electronic Grammy nominees ahead of the awards this weekend.
Is there more? Absolutely there’s more. Let’s dig in.
Amtrac, “Nobody Else”
Some robots will Say Anything to get the girl of their dreams, and if you can’t tell someone how you feel in words, say it with a song! “Nobody Else” is the perfect serenade to dedicate to your special someone. Amtrac’s latest single takes its vocal from a sample of the Four Tops’ 1965 R&B classic “I Can’t Help Myself (Sugar Pie Honey Bunch),” as a nod to the producer’s love of Motown. In true Amtrac fashion, though, there’s an odd hint of unhinged darkness lurking just below the synth-laden surface — and the adorable music video serves a fresh side of sinister ‘70s horror flick, too.
“Nobody Else” is the fifth single from Amtrac’s third studio album Extra Time, which was released in full today (Feb. 3) on his Openers label. The album is a cinematic showcase of vintage synth sounds, created during his time in lockdown. It’s something beautiful that came from a dark period, and we’re happy for the chance to dance to these tunes together with friends under the sun. – KAT BEIN
Schak feat. Kim English, “Moving All Around (Jumpin’) [John Summit Remix]”
After finding crossover success with Ewan McVicar’s 2021 single “Tell Me Something Good,” Patrick Topping’s Trick label unleashed yet another big hit this past October with “Moving All Around (Jumpin’),” the debut single from English producer Schak. The song, which samples late house singer Kim English’s “Bumpin’ & Jumpin’,” bursts at its seams with an infectious energy powered by a pounding bassline and vocals inspiring dancers to shake, shimmy and get silly.
John Summit has been a fan of “Moving All Around” since even before day one, rinsing it at Manchester’s Warehouse Project days before its official release. Perhaps in his biggest show of support, he has remixed the track himself. Summit nudges down the BPM a smidge, modding the original’s frenetic rave energy into something more tech-house-friendly with cryo-cannon builds and a sleek, grinding groove. “The UK hit by [Schak] has been stuck in my head for months and when [Topping] asked me to remix it i knew i had to give it my own spin,” he wrote on Instagram. Given Summit’s rapid rise in the past few years, it’s the kind of co-sign and audience expansion that can take Schak and “Moving” to the next level. — KRYSTAL RODRIGUEZ
Matt Guy, “The Devil”
Sometimes possession is fun! Let U.K. producer Matt Guy bring out your wildest urges via his latest, “The Devil,” an homage to the late ’90s/early 2000s rave hedonism that in fact samples the 2000 track “D.E.V.I.L.” by 666. (The sample isn’t just Guy being trendy either, as his The 90s Made Me Do It Radio 1 Mini Mix from last November demonstrated his true love for the ’90s rave sound.) Out via Armada, “The Devil” is pure peaktime fare as hot as the flames of hell itself. In this case that’s a very good thing. — KATIE BAIN
It’s been five years since Habstrakt left his native France to chase his dreams in sunny Los Angeles, and it’s taken about that many years to get his “Vision” clear.
“I wrote the first idea of this record when I first moved to Los Angeles in 2017, and it’s been haunting me since,” Habstrakt says. “I had a vision for it but could never get it right, until I recently decided to fully rework it after being inspired in Amsterdam for ADE and developing the album. This song is sort of a time capsule to me, with so many versions of it tied to memories of the life I started after moving from France to LA.”
The bass-driven house single was worth the wait. Out on Insomniac Records, its funked-up rhythm is sure to bring bodies to the dancefloor — and it’s only the first taste of things to come, as “Vision” is the second single from Habstrakt’s forthcoming debut LP. – K. Bein
Softest Hard feat. Blush, “My Boo”
Softest Hard is back with her first release of the year, “My Boo,” a pastel-coated remake of Ghost Town DJ’s’ 1996 hit of the same name. The L.A.-based producer seems to be on something of a nostalgia kick: last summer, she linked up with T-Pain on the Eiffel-65-referencing “I’m Blue.” Here, she collaborates with vocalist Blush on a “My Boo” cover that’s updated for today’s bedroom ravers. Whereas the original is sultry and laidback, made for a casual block party, Softest Hard cranks up the speed with a hardcore rendition whose beaming synths, pitched-up vocals and fast-paced drums fly by like a movie watched in forward motion. It’s fast, it’s sweaty, it’s cute and it’s out now on HARD Recs. — K.R.
Austin Millz, “Nobody Khan (Ain’t Nobody)”
Chaka Khan‘s 1983 classic “Ain’t Nobody” has been begging for a modern remix, with Harlem-born, Los Angeles-based producer Austin Millz heeding the call with his steamy, sexy, pure mood house edit of the hit. This one is all sunset vibes, dripping in blissed out sex appeal while maximizing the original’s sentiment that there simply ain’t nobody that can love me better. Out via Ultra, “Nobody Khan (Ain’t Nobody)” is the first of Millz’s many delicious edits to get an official release — a perfect way to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the song (and Chaka Khan’s 70th birthday) next month. — K. Bain
Five years ago, award-winning electronic music DJ-producer Jesse Rose and hit songwriter-producer Jesse Rogg decided to launch a global agency to represent creative directors. “We just realized that there was no structure to the world of creative direction,” says Rogg. Having previously worked well in the studio together, Rose says they figured they would work just as well as business partners and, in 2018, formed the Original Creative Agency. Today, […]
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