Major booty shakin’ promised at Coachella

by Ryo Miyauchi

02_13_12_Entertainment_Skrillex_Skrillex Boysnoize by bj̦rn jonasThe Dance Acts, Part 2

Disclaimer: I am going to skip over many electronic dance music-labeled DJs and focus more on the smaller names for the dance section. For more hyped and energetic DJ sets at the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival, check these names out.


TNGHT (Friday)

Genre: Bass, Dubstep

Choice Song: “Higher Ground”


Most DJ sets of 2012 worked a track by the duo TNGHT into  mixes to the point where TNGHT’s absence from a set seemed unusual. The guys responsible for the ruckus are noisemakers Hudson Mohawke and Lunice. As TNGHT, the duo mixes the bombastic trunk-rattling of Mohawke and the goofy beatwork of Lunice to create a mixture of wonky hammering production. The duo’s mix for BBC Radio 1Xtra’s “Diplo and Friends” show should highlight its taste, which works into anthems such as 2 Chainz and U.K. bass-beat maker Decibel. Prepare for their show-stopping anthem by checking out “Higher Ground,” alongside the many headbanging beats to get the full experience.


Dog Blood (Friday)

Genre: Electro, Dubstep

Choice Song: “Next Order”


Under the name Dog Blood the duo may not be recognizable, but the two names behind Dog Blood —Skrillex and Boys Noize—may ring a bell. Dog Blood is an exciting collaboration between two of arguably the biggest names in the current dance scene. The duo recently dropped the single, “Next Order / Middle Finger,” with its A-side thumping more of the electro grind of Boys Noize and the B-side chopping up Skrillex’s epic breaks. Together as one, Dog Blood forms an unstoppable force with unlimited possibilities for madness. Not much  has been released by the new name, but Dog Blood is one promising act for the night.


Birdy Nam Nam (Saturday)

Genre: Electro, Bass

Choice Mix: “HARD Summer Festival Unofficial Mix”


The creative heads deploying heavy bass as French collective Birdy Nam Nam are Crazy B, DJ Need, DJ Pone and Lil’ Mike. The four originally had their mind set to the turntable roots with their self-titled debut, tuned to a blend of trip-hop kicks and the grime of early dubstep. Birdy Nam Nam eventually upped its template into a more muscular sounding electro. Recent songs such as “Defiant Order” and “Goin’ In” drill heavier, infused with enough hard-hitting electro to get a remix treatment from EDM star Skrillex. The crew’s latest unofficial mix for the HARD summer festival compiles recent likeminded dance tracks, filled with killer bass and grinding melodies. Get ready for a thrill and keep Birdy Nam Nam handy.


Baauer (Saturday)

Genre: Bass, House

Choice Song: “Harlem Shake”


The slang term “trap” transformed from the source of rugged cocaine rap into a dancefloor phenomenon last year. One of the names popularly attached to the trap-rave scene is Baauer. He scored the anthem “Harlem Shake,” which turned up Southern hip-hop thuggery into an irresistible dance track. Baauer had a slot in last fall’s HARD festival, along with names like Boys Noize and A-Trak, and now he’s ready to bring his energy to Coachella. For more on Baauer’s tastes, check out his 17-minute preview mix for the HARD festival.


Major Lazer (Saturday)

Genre: Dancehall, Dubstep

Choice Mix: “Carnival 2012 Mix”


The minds behind the laser-wielding superhero Major Lazer are DJs and producers Switch and Diplo. The tunes flowing from Major Lazer are roots of energetic dancehall and dub that become instant riot-starters. Pack the funk-heavy patois and Jamaican beat with stomping house drums and the result is an explosive beat from start to finish. The duo’s level of madness earned them a headlining spot in dance music festival HARD last fall, along with French house titan Justice. With a second album on the way, Major Lazer is loaded with new original production as well, including “Jah No Partial” with Flux Pavilion and last year’s excellent “Get Free.” To get the Lazer party started, turn up the duo’s “Carnival 2012 Mix” where the signature dancehall sound will keep blasting on and on.


Unicorn Kid (Sunday)

Genre: Bass, Electro

Choice Song: “Pure Space”


Scottish producer Unicorn Kid’s sound is very distinct. His tracks are huge, with the main melody built from bright chiptune synths and sunny steel drums massively stacked on top of each other. Songs such as “Pure Space” and “True Love Fantasy” are feel-good tracks that hit the sensations immediately. The mix that presents Unicorn Kid’s tastes most fluidly without exhaustion is a 5-minute mini-mix for BBC Radio 1’s “Annie Nightingale” show. Although Unicorn Kid packs on countless amount of similarly euphoric tracks in a span of a few minutes, it’s smoothly segued. Unicorn Kid’s set might be a rejuvenating start to the final day of the festival.

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