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Five Artists Who Will Blow Your Mind at the 2017 Global Dance Festival

The Global Dance Festival took over Red Rocks July 8-10, 2016.EXPAND
The Global Dance Festival took over Red Rocks July 8-10, 2016.
Aaron Thackeray

Global Dance Festival, one of the city's best electronic-music events, is back for 2017 – but, there have been some big changes. For starters, it's moved from Red Rocks to the parking lot of Mile High Stadium, and will now take place over two days, not three. But before you hop from stage to stage or take a ride on the Ferris wheel (yes, the festival will have rides this year!), check out these five cannot-miss artists who will be performing.

Hardwell playing Decadence at the Colorado Convention Center.
Hardwell playing Decadence at the Colorado Convention Center.
Miles Chrisinger

You know the lineup is good if Hardwell is kicking off the countdown. The Dutch DJ is a former DJ Mag No. 1, and founder of the Revealed Recordings label, which reps hit-makers Afrojack, Dash Berlin and Showtek. Hardwell has captivated listeners by doing two things well: remixes and collaborations with pop stars. Remixing the likes of Tiesto and Avicii while working with Austin Mahone and Jason Derulo, Hardwell brings catchy pop vocals that whip crowds into a frenzy. He'll have you feeling innocent and free with his mainstream brand of dance and electro-house.

Porter Robinson
Porter Robinson has spent his adult life in the laser-filled limelight. Before he was  twenty years old, Robinson literally crashed Beatport's servers with the release of his first EP, Spitfire, and had three chart-topping records before he turned 21. The last time time Robinson was in town, he was rocking the suburbs around Dick's Sporting Goods Park at Bassnectar's Basscenter. Porter originally produced hard-hitting dubstep and moombahton beats but has softened his touch with synth-heavy house tracks.

Read on for more of the best artists of the Global Dance Festival.

Nero heading the Safe in Sound music festival at 1STBANK Center in Broomfield.
Nero heading the Safe in Sound music festival at 1STBANK Center in Broomfield.

Global Dance Festival lists Nero as its special guest. The London trio, comprising Dan Stephens, Joe Ray and vocalist Alana Watson, has wowed audiences with two full-length studio albums and spectacular live sets. Originally formed as a drum-and-bass act, Nero quickly shifted to dubstep with mind-blowing vocals, garnering the act many awards. The group produces slower-paced dubstep backing Watson's epic vocals. In a weekend full of DJs behind decks, Nero will offer a captivating change of scenery.

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Zhu Facebook

Zhu takes his music seriously. While releasing his first two EPs, he attempted to remain anonymous so that he could be judged solely on his music's quality. The verdict: Zhu deserves immense praise. Both EPs were well received and revealed a vast array of influences, from hip-hop and trap to down-tempo house and nu disco. Last summer, Zhu released his debut studio album, Generationwhy; he provides vocals for most of the songs, offering mellower and softer house tracks that contain sonic vibes akin to the Weeknd's early material.

After Kaskade teamed up with Deadmau5 to release "I Remember," electronic music was never the same. The song became one of the hottest progressive-house/trance tracks of the last decade. With it, Kaskade anchored his name on the marquees of famous dance clubs around the world. Being twice voted the United States' best DJ and receiving five Grammy nominations has not distracted Kaskade from dropping hit after hit. His last album, Automatic, is approaching its two-year anniversary. Automatic was a more bass-influenced album, but still features the airy female vocals that recall Kaskade's trance roots.

Global Dance Festival, July 21-22, Mile High Stadium, 1701 Bryant Street. Buy your tickets online.

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