My Top 10 Electronic/Dance tracks of 2017

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Like most of the UIC Radio DJs and music lovers in general, I’ve been compiling my end of year lists. Because my interest is mainly in electronic and dance music,  I’ve decided to focus my list on the best tracks of 2017. The past year has been huge for electronic music. Techno continued it’s current wave of popularity, with new voices both refining and warping the genre into new directions. Lo-Fi house died and then came back, club music got deconstructed and rebuilt into a noisy mess, and push for more representation from female, queer, and POC DJ’s helped bring new voices to the table. Here’s what I took away as the best of the year:

10. DJ Boring-Goodbye Michael

This little wonder of a remix is only number 10 because it’s technically a release from the the late hours of 2016. Created in the wake of George Michael’s passing last December, DJ Boring takes the late singer-songwriter’s 2003 track “Amazing” and downgrades it for the lo-fi house generation. The result is a remix that improves upon its source materiel by letting Michael’s melodic genius shine through the distorted bass and tape hiss.

Continue reading “My Top 10 Electronic/Dance tracks of 2017”

ALESSO is coming to Chicago!!! (Let’s have a group trip to his concert)

A lot of good news coming towards our way. Dj Alesso is coming to Chicago on Saturday Nov. 23rd at the Aragon Ballroom. This will definitely be one the notable end of the year DJ events happening in the City prior to New Years Eve.

Alesso is a Swedish DJ with a renowned progressive house reputation in the EDM world. He collaborated with the Swedish House, Calvin Harris, Tiesto, and also with Sebastian Ingrosso on one of the hottest tracks of 12’, Calling (Lose My Mind). Alesso is definitely one of the hottests on the scene right now, so don’t miss this one out.

If you are interested in going, you must purchase your tickets as soon as possible (link below). Presale tickets are gone. If you are interested in going as a group, email me at aali42@uic.edu and I will organize it!!!

http://www.clubtix.com/alesso-aragon-ballroom-chicago-tickets-239938

Swedish House Mafia is Back!!!! (for a documentary)

I know. I know how you just felt reading that the greatest trio of EDM history is back. That rush of excitement, the lapse imaginative moments where you thought of the possibility of attending one of their concerts no matter what because you couldn’t attend the one last tour when it came to Chicago. Well, they are obviously not back to continue making music. They are back in this tell-all documentary that possibly has the answer to why they split up.

Swedish House broke many EDM fans’ hearts when they announced their split up. It remains a mystery why the group decided to break up at the height of a successful career. The good news is that these three talented guys (Axwell, Steve Angello, and Sebastian Ingrosso) are still making music on their own. Even though the group is over, they still got voted on DJ Mag’s Top 100, which shows how loyal their fans are.

I leave you with a clip from the documentary to be released. It will definitely bring back a good feeling of the love that you had when you heard these guys. I personally can’t hear “Don’t you worry child” without remembering my time traveling through Europe and meeting new people (Because I heard it so much abroad). Anyways, let’s see what this documentary will tell us when its released.

Ohh, HELLO EDM WORLD

Well, here it is once again. DJ MAG released its TOP 100 list that includes Dj’s from all around the world. If you are a trance/house lover, this won’t surprise you much. On the other hand, if you are a bass junkie, a “deadmau5 is house” and “Skrillex is the best”, then just scroll down down and away. Here are some of the highlights.

1)   DJ MAG Top 100 polls are based on the votes of participants from around the world. No one or committee picks the DJ’s, or believe me, Skrillex would make it on the Top 1000 at 999 (if such list existed).

2)   Armin Dethroned (no, not really)

Armin Van Buuren a.k.a the God of Trance/House/Progressive, father of all, is not number one this year. Whatever the reason is, Armin’s spot in the EDM world remains the same. The man himself concluded that he won the title 5 times and thinks that’s enough.

3)   Hardwell worked hard for it.

Hardwell took in #1 at no one’s surprise. At least not the top DJ’s, including Armin, Tiesto, and others. One notable factor in his rise from 5th last year to 1st this year is his performance at Tomorrowland.

4)   David Guetta is 5th and not 100

Why David Guetta keeps on making it in the top 5 for the past several years is a question that needs an answer. My answer is this, because the people who vote obviously don’t know club, house and trance, and anything electronic by a big name is considered good to them.

5)   DJ Mag Polls are very much affected by the activity of each DJ from the time of the release of the previous year’s polls until the votes get counted for the current year’s votes. That means if a legendary DJ like Carl Cox wasn’t very active, his rank will go down. And if someone like Avicci releases a catchy song that is more pop music than EDM, he will go up the rankings. That is because most people usually vote based on the tracks they like instead of the DJ.

6)   Some real talented Dj’s and duos to look for this year: Aly and Fila (20), Nicky Romero(7th), Above and Beyond(17th), Arty (57th), R3hab(58th), Omnia (48)

What are your thoughts on the TOP 100….Who would you vote as your top 3 ?????

I leave you with Hardwell’s awesome performance from Tomorrowland 2013.

Welcome Back to School!!! UIC RADIO Covers North Coast Music Festival.

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Welcome back to school boys and girls!
For some of you this is a complete bummer, no one said taking Calc, chem, bio or any elective classes is going to be easy.
However, here at UIC Radio we are stoked to be back in action!
Why?
Because we get to share some awesome music experiences from killer music festivals to exclusive artist interviews anywhere from Kendrick Lamar and Morgan Page to local celebs like Rude Gentlemen, Phero, or You Are Here

This week we are covering the North Coast Music Festival all three days.
We are keeping a watchful eye on Passion Pit, Claude Vonstroke, Afrojack, Mac Miller, Nas, and Wu-Tang. We are also very excited to come back for NCMF ‘s fourth year. It certainly seems as if every year they put out a bigger and greater show with top notch headlining artists…. I mean who would want to miss out on AFROJACK this year?!?!?!

Stay posted for any updates on the NCMF exclusively at UIC RADIO and Rock on!!

The Wonderful World of West

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Meet DJ Mr. West and his musical experiment.

At 23 years old he has created a following in Chicago with his style and ability to “give the people what they want and what they need.”

West combines Chicago House and hip-hop while also throwing in a song you’ve never heard (but should) to “educate” the listeners as he put it. All he wants is for you to DANCE!

I had the chance to interview this fine fellow and got to know, ‘Who is Mr. West?”

Continue reading “The Wonderful World of West”

Boombox & the Psychedelic Experience

I had the opportunity to take a trip up to Lansing, MI (3 hour drive if anyone was wondering) to see Boombox–a band capable of mastering the fusion of Rock, Blues, and funky house beats. With a name like Boombox, I expected nothing less than a show with a blaring bass and beats.

Amidst the Michigan State University students drenched in green glitter and beer, we arrived fashionably late in time to hear the headliners–Boombox. The instant they began to play, the bass vibrated through to the floor and I wondered how all that sound could come from two men in furry hats and sunglasses! And this wasn’t your typical crowd. No crowd surfing or moshpits, but rather a lot of swaying to the music.

Despite my description, front men Russ Randolph and Zion Godchaux claim they play nothing but Rock n’ Roll. I like to call it Psychedelic House, music that transcends through language and time created to stimulate your mind by leaving out lyrics to allow you to focus on the beat. Trippy huh?

This style is no accident, Godchaux, guitar/vocalist, is son of Grateful Dead’s Keith and Donna Godchaux–contributers to the Psychedelic music movement in the 60s.

Overall it was an enjoyable experience that I recommend to everyone—and all for $20? An affordable St.Patrick’s Day weekend indeed.

So, relax & enjoy!

Check out their interview here :

Spring Awakening Music Festival 2013

Spring Awakening is coming to Chicago and bringing an array of must-see DJs for a 3-day festival of electronic house that any house music junkie can fill their fix for a year! It is without a doubt a blessing to be taking place in Chicago’s very own Soldier Field on June 14-16, 2013. The line-up includes Calvin Harris, Bassnectar (headliners), and a few of my favorites, Flosstradamus, Felix Da Housecat, and Boys Noize plus many more!

If you love the upbeat, energized atmosphere that these artists bring to the stage its worth checking out the 3-day long ‘dance til you drop’ party–How much you say? The 3-day package ranges from $150-175.

Also a unique twist to this festival is the DJ contest (LISTEN UP ASPIRING DJS!) that will offer  one lucky DJ to open on one of the four stages (plus VIP tickets) of this massive music festival. For any DJ’s out there, check out the link below for further details and the fierce competition.

Out of your budget? No worries, there will be after parties featuring DJs from the festival that won’t break your pocket!

For more information about the line-up, tickets, contest, and after parties check out: http://www.springawakeningfestival.com

I’m excited, let’s go!

Throwback Monday: Jungle Brothers- “I’ll House You”

To ease the Monday Blues, today’s throwback is a classic house track. Jungle Brothers- “I’ll House You” will give Chicago natives a flash back to a time when beats ruled–a true mesh of synthesizers and electronic beats. A homegrown musical wonder, House Music is a Chicago staple that has generated a clear break into mainstream. But let us not forget the classic tracks because every Chicago Teen has met the “perculator” at least once in their life.

We can credit house music to the death of disco in the 70’s and underground DJ’s mixing dusty disco with new funky beats. It was a match made in heaven for enthusiastic dancers and DJ’s–a subculture of music aficionados and break-dancers was born. Types like Frankie Knuckles, Fingers Inc., and Steve “Silk” Hurley helped define Chicago House and continue to create those must-have beats that can’t be emulated.

And that is today’s throwback for Monday– a bit of forgotten Chicago history.

Lovin’ what you hear? Some DJ’s to look into: Felix DaHouseCat or DJ Funk. Let YouTube be your best friend on this one–the wonders that lie in underground music will astound you.

So, relax and enjoy!