Over the past week, Coachella and Ultra Music Festival announced their lineups. Ultra’s, which extends over two weekends now, was predictable. In addition to the Phase 1 artists announced earlier, Phase 2 includes many big names: Alesso, Benny Benassi, Eric Prydz, Fedde Le Grand, Hardwell, Nicky Romero, Porter Robinson, Zedd, and Sven Vath. Along with the stable Carl Cox & Friends and A State of Trance tents, Afrojack’s Jacked and Skrillex’s OWSLA labels get their own stages this year. Less typical, and somewhat disappointing, is the inclusion of Azealia Banks and Snoop Doog at the live stage.
Coachella, on the other hand, disappointed those hoping for a big performance from Swedish House Mafia or Tiesto. The 2013 lineup had fewer EDM artists and their names were pushed farther down the listing. The month separating Ultra and Coachella is considered to fuel the change.
Also pertaining to UMF, Ultra Music – who now has a partnership with the festival – put together a deal with Sony that includes A&R, distribution, and international repertoire. Sony’s artists, in turn, get to be part of Ultra’s compilation. Ultra’s head, Patrick Moxey, has since been appointed to President, Electronic Music, Sony Music Entertainment at the major label.
Additionally tying into Sony’s greater share of EDM is the signing of new artists, as well as their releases. Depeche Mode, now on subsidiary Columbia Records after years on Mute, has new album Delta Machine scheduled for March 2013. Daft Punk, not putting out a proper release since 2005, also signed to Columbia, and an album is reportedly in the works.
On a smaller scale, Nettwerk, the label that brought you Ladytron and Morgan Page, announced an EDM sub-label, Nettrax. Exclusively for one-off singles, the new, Los Angeles-based label started off with Andy Calwell’s “We Are The Future.”. In the future, Nettrax artists may move up to Nettwerk for full-length album deals.
As far as major releases are concerned, John Dahlback announced both a North American tour and new single “Life (Diamonds in the Dark),” which comes out on Big Beat/Atlantic on February 25. Dahlback’s tour begins February 1 in Toronto and lasts until March.
Additionally, MYNC, R3hab, and Nari & Milani announced the Miami 2013 three-CD compilation album, out on February 22 through Cr2 Records. Digital and CD formats will be available.
For independent releases, Tim Mason, signed to Steve Angello’s Size Records, announced new single “Swoon” for February 11. A week before that, Bryan Kearney releases “The Nettle” on Paul Oakenfold’s Perfecto Fluoro.
For releases only good for mocking, Bret Michaels, of Poison and that dreadful Rock of Love reality show, put out a dance single titled “You Know You Want It.” We’ll spare your ears and won’t provide a link, but those curious can find the track on Michaels’ Myspace page. The track is also expected to be part of his solo album Good Songs & Great Friends. This makes Skrillex’ work with Korn practically a classic EDM collaboration.
EDM set another record this week – but not one sales or attendance related. Instead, the Association for Electronic Music was founded and is the first international organization to represent a genre after the Country Music Association. Their mission is “To represent the common interests of all individuals and companies whose business is electronic music and to advocate on behalf of electronic dance music as a musical genre.”