This Week in Dance Music is a new weekly series by Blisspop aiming to highlight and provide nuanced commentary on the biggest stories in the dance music world.
SCARY MONSTERS & NICE SPRITES TURNS 8
I think all dance music lovers can relate when I say that there are certain moments in your journey as a fan that you can point out not only as a defining moment for the genre, but for a time in your life. For me, the release of Skrillex’s Scary Monsters and Nice Sprites lands at the top of that list. As “blog house” began to make waves back in the U.S. in 2010, this EP dropped like a backhand slap to the face of EDM fans everywhere. There were sounds coming out of speakers and subwoofers that many had just frankly never heard before. It shocked the world and created its own sub-genre of dubstep that fit the festival stage. It is a record that firmly planted EDM’s flag into American soil, and will always bring a heavy dose of nostalgia from my high school years.
+HOT TAKE OF THE WEEK+ ABC CALLS DAVID GUETTA THE GRANDFATHER OF EDM…AND I AGREE
I’ve been waiting all week to get around to this story. If you missed out, this past weekend ABC aired a story on David Guetta’s upcoming studio album, 7. In the television piece, the reporter interviewing Guetta stated the DJ was one of “the grandfathers of Electronic Dance Music” who brought the genre back to the U.S. This predictably did not go down well on Twitter, where ABC received an onslaught of criticism for not paying homage to pioneers like Frankie Knuckles, Juan Atkins, etc. I am not one of those people.
While it’s obvious the David Guetta is not the person who created dance music in America, at all, after viewing the piece, I don’t think that’s what ABC intended to say either. What he did was help bring it back, after it had evolved into a different product. There’s a clear distinction between what has become modern EDM and what falls under techno, house music, etc on a deeper level. The music that came back to the states starting around the late 2000’s was different in almost every way imaginable from the essence of Chicago house and Detroit techno, and there are people who deserve credit for that resurgence of dance music in our popular culture and music. David Guetta is no doubt at the top of that list. You can hate his music, or him, all you want but the fact is he IS a grandfather of what became today’s EDM. But that’s ok! Just look at all the great music that has come from the genre becoming popular in the states again. The rich success of the top layer frosting on this dance music cake has allowed for the essence of the classic genres to blossom and thrive again in a new era.
Let’s learn to love all sides of dance music, and not to be afraid to let credit be given where it is due just because of semantics.
The music conference, which hosts everything from artist panels on digital marketing to endless all-night parties, broke records this year with over 400,000 attendees. It’s no surprise to me because I was the only one I knew who didn’t go… The FOMO was real this year, as the rise of Instagram Stories worked to add another level of hype and circulation of everything that went on from the clubs to the conferences. Here’s to all of us that will hopefully have a reason to go next year right?
Now I initially thought this might be a little bit of an overstep, falling into the same rage as those who thought Guetta was undeserving of the moniker stated above. I actually was the one who needed a little more nuance in my opinion this time around though, as Justin from the Blisspop team pointed out what a “statistical beast” Aoki is. According to Smithsonian, Aoki is the world’s most traveled DJ, with over 300 shows a year for almost a decade now. That’s just damn impressive…. Don’t know if I’ll be going to a museum to see it anytime soon though.
Ending this week’s edition with some laughs, did you know ICE T recently released a techno album? This is the type of news that makes me wonder what kind of twisted future have we found ourselves in. While I did try to suspend disbelief for a moment, it took me all of 30 seconds to make my mind up. Nope. Nope. Hell Nope. It’s good for a few giggles though.