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Tuesday
Jun042013

5 Mixes to Get You Pumped for Electric Zoo 5

Festival curation is a gift often overlooked, and today Made Event came through in more ways than imaginable for the third phase of the Electric Zoo lineup. Phase II had all the bases covered with headliners representing the best of bass, Tech, and Electro - but that was just the beginning. While I will admit that there isn't a genre-specific flow to a lot of these stages, it really doesn't matter with the talent that's been confirmed. You'd think it'd be hard to get me excited over something so far away with over five festivals before the big hurrah to end the summer, but this schedule is seriously slick. To get you all as stoked as we are we've compiled a few mixes representing the best new zookeepers added to this year's roster.

John O'Callaghan

If anyone's going to transition the vibes from bass to 140 JOC's the man to do it. His style is all about the pressure between vocal rifts and the thrust of relentless basslines that hammer the sounds through the crowd. As Ireland's top DJ, John forged an alliance with John Askew's Discover early on in his career which paved the way for him to rank 24 on DJ Mag's Top 100 by 2009. Later that year he established one of Armada's most successful sub-labels Subculture, which has since provided a haven for him to harvest talent specific to his driving sound. Kick off the festival bright and early Friday with JOC at the Hilltop Arena!

Orjan Nilsen

One of Armin van Buuren's closest allies has also been giving him a run for his money. The artist has demonstrated since 2011 his knack for commanding a main stage crowd with the sounds of Trance & Progressive as one of the scene's biggest breakthrough artists, but his history goes much deeper. As a native of the polar region of northern Norway, Orjan used the isolation to his advantage picking up the keyboard at age seven and later moving on to synthesizers as a teenager. His productions fluctuate widely between old-school rave Trance and Electro "Trance 2.0," but he's never afraid to throw a curveball with chunkier basslines and a shade of Tech. I'll be excited to see him for the first time Friday at Main Stage East!

Nicole Moudaber

The Tech vixen caught my attention on a sweaty day the first weekend of Ultra when I was wandering stages and found my home under the sprawling MegaStructure. Since then I've been hooked to her inescapable groove that straddles the dark and groovy sides of Tech House in a way that's quite indescribable. After her widely celebrated album Believe, Nicole's been ripping up stages from Cielo in New York to the huge clubs of Ibiza. Over Memorial Day weekend Nicole pulverized the cavernous Underground stage at Detroit Electronic Music Festival in one of the headiest sets I've heard this year. And her hair is awesome. Catch Nicole Sunday with Drumcode co-conspirator Adam Beyer at the Sunday School Grove.

Dirtyphonics

I've thought for some time that Dirty were one of the most underrated acts in dance music, if not the most. Nestled somewhere between Drum & Bass and Dubstep, their sound is as manifold as the personalities of the four collaborators that form the team. As performers they are wild and anarchistic which adds to the energy already brought on by the undeniable tinge of metal that resonates through their mixes. Their debut album Irreverence which dropped in March has carried them up the ladder to the recognition they much deserve and I'll be cheering them on the whole way up. Ride the bass with us Sunday at Riverside!

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Aly & Fila

Aly & Fadi (Fila) are among my favorite producers for more reasons than imaginable, with a story as charming and beautiful as their mixes. After meeting as children in kindergarten, the two became enthralled by Trance pioneers like Paul van Dyk and Chicane, and opened up their own small studio in 1999. Soon they found themselves signed to Kyau & Albert's Euphonic Records which helped them gain popularity to the point of spinning alongside Armin van Buuren at ASOT 300. In 2012 the two ranked 19 among the world's top DJs giving credit to their Future Sound of Egypt imprint which has been one of Trance's mainstays since its inception. Their mixes are celestial and icey cool, always a journey unexpected. Props to Made for listening to our prayers and bringing uplifting Trance to the main stage - catch them Sunday afternoon at West! 

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By Edward Fancher

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