The Ten Best Under-the-Radar Acts at EDC Las Vegas
Courtesy of AM Only
With eight stages and over 200 scheduled performers, figuring out who to see and where to go at EDC Vegas can be a bewildering task. Sure, you want to be there with all the masses when Disclosure and Calvin Harris go on. But what to do before then?
We're here to help. Here are ten relatively lesser-known artists who, whether you're into underground house, old-school trance, sleek drum 'n' bass or skull-crushing dubstep, will turn you on to some new sounds while you're waiting for the marquee acts to go on (we can't call them "headliners" because, as we all know, at EDC, the headliner is YOU).
Check back with Westword throughout the festival this weekend for more stories and photos from our sister paper, LA Weekly.
This Oregon producer has caught the ear of labels like Buygore and Monstercat with his distinctive style, which combines elements of U.K. house and garage with soulful vocals and plenty of wobbly bass. With support from Chuckie, Zeds Dead, AC Slater and many more, you'll probably recognize some of his tracks, even if you don't yet know his name. At Stage 7, Saturday, 8 to 9 p.m.
Ajdin "Baggi" Begovic's feelgood fusion of deep and big-room house is all the more remarkable considering his backstory. A Bosnian native who spent his early teens in detention camps and fleeing war zones, Baggi eventually landed in Rotterdam and quickly found a new home in the Dutch house scene. Tiësto was an early proponent, and Rita Ora, Rod Stewart and Kelly Clarkson are among the growing list of pop stars who have turned to
L.A.'s Trevor Bones has been holding it down in the local scene for years, bringing his fun yet filthy mix of house, garage and ghettotech to residencies at AC Slater's monthly Night Bass parties and Insomniac's Inception Saturdays at Exchange LA. At EDC, he'll be part of the Night Bass lineup on Stage 7 on Sunday, which also includes Slater, Kry Wolf (see below), Chris Lorenzo, Jack Beats and
Brainchild aka Brandon Elliot
You'll have plenty of opportunities to hear this L.A. DJ's self-described "banging tech booty house" at EDC: He's playing five different sets throughout the weekend, including one throwback set that will nod to his roots in the SoCal drum 'n' bass scene. Elliot's label, Cats & Boots, specializes in supremely funky cuts with hip-hop vocal samples and dirty bass drops. With only 505 SoundCloud followers, he's definitely one of the most under-the-radar acts on this year's lineup — but his infectious, party-ready style won't stay under the radar for long. At the Funk House stage, Friday, 3 a.m. to close; other set times TBA.
Many trainspotters think this London-based producer is going to be the next big superstar in trance. He's already notched four trance No. 1's on Beatport and had the record of the week on Above & Beyond's Group Therapy radio show, along with spins from the likes of Tiesto, Pete Tong and Armin van Buuren. His style, epic and euphoric but just gritty enough to stay interesting, is tailor-made for EDC's gargantuan sound systems. At the Circuit Grounds stage, Sunday, 7:25 to 8:25 p.m.
This Australian-born, London-based DJ, producer and label boss (Attraction Music) specializes in an underground sound steeped in classic Chicago house and Detroit techno. With propulsive tracks like her latest on Toolroom, "Can't Sleep," she'll keep the energy level high well into the wee hours. At Stage 7, Friday, 7 to 8 p.m.
Since 2002, Kasra Mowlavi's Critical Music label has pushed U.K. drum 'n' bass scene forward with essential releases from the likes of Enei, Rockwell, S.P.Y. and Foreign Concept. No less a D&B luminary than Goldie has hailed Kasra as a "kindred spirit." Too busy running his label to seek the spotlight, he's remained something of a well-kept secret outside of U.K. D&B circles. But in recent years, Kasra has been stepping out with more DJ gigs and radio appearances, as well as new EP with Enei called Inside the Box, which features several tracks likely to detonate EDC dance floors. At the Bass Pod stage B2B with
Think of this Bristol duo as the U.K.'s answer to Dirtybird Records — they've even collaborated with Dirtybird mainman Claude Von Stroke, who clearly digs their gritty, witty take on techno-tinged bass house as much as we do. With spins from A-Trak, Annie Mac and Hot Chip's Joe Goddard, remixes for Food Music and Strictly Rhythm, and a U.S. tour culminating in their EDC Vegas appearance, they're bringing U.K. underground house to America's EDM masses with a vengeance. At Stage 7, Sunday, 9 to 10 p.m.
With support from Owsla,
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