October 12, 2021
After three reschedules, revelers will once again be able to gather under the Electric Sky for west coast festival juggernaut Insomniac’s 25th Electric Daisy Carnival (EDC) October 22nd-24th.
One of the greatest things about EDC is that there's something for everyone. Spread out over eight genre-rich stages, countless art cars, and side stages, the EDC line-up stratifies dance music representing artists from every possible corner of the culture. We've broken down some of the house acts that should be on your must-see list.
Claptone has been active since 2012 and steadily gaining popularity since. I use the pronoun “they” not to be politically correct, but because until a couple of years ago, Claptone was believed to be one man. It turns out its two people. Both enigmatic artists don the iconic golden beak of the medieval plague doctor, black shirt, and white gloves. Which has often led me to think: What happens when they get picked up from the hotel or airport? Do they wear the getup the whole time? Looks aside, Claptone has consistently pumped out funky, chunky house and tech house for nearly a decade and has landed on the top 10's of some of the largest acts in the industry.
Dominic Matheson—aka Australian DJ and producer Dom Dolla—has been busy over the last couple of years earning nominations and awards for his releases. His trademark sound can be heard on dance floor hits like "Take It," "Pump the Brakes," and 2019's Justin Martin sampling "San Frandisco." EDC is just one of the stops on his cross-country tour of the US, but his set at EDC on one of the largest stages CircuitGROUNDS is sure to be packed full of IDs.
J. Worra is the new kid on the block, but already making huge waves. Hailed as DJ Mag’s 2019 Breakthrough Music Producer of the Year she’s released on tastemaker labels such as Dirtybird, Club Sweat, Techne, Realm Records, and more. She's also become a sought-after remixer putting her spin on tracks by GRiZ, Gryffin, Gorgon City, Aluna George, Kaskade, and Deadmau5. She's a previously hidden treasure and you'll want to see this young master at work.
Bijou is recognized as one of the leaders of the G-house movement in America. By infusing the timeless styles of hip hop and classic house, BIJOU satisfies the craving for the thumping funk of house and the club-ready swag of hip hop. His production style is live enough for the underground and mean enough to hold down any main stage.
Oliver Heldens is one of the very few performers who use their actual name. At the ripe old age of 26, he is regarded as a pioneer of future house, and one of the first to push it mainstream. Oliver Heldens burst onto the scene in 2013 (at age 18) with “Gecko.” It was picked up by none other than Tiësto, who later released it to Warner Brothers, and it peaked at #1 on the UK Top 40 charts. While most 18-year-olds are skipping school and drinking 40’s, Helden's was jet-setting and pumping out chart-topping hits. He has consistently released award-winning tracks and done remixes for Dua Lipa, The Chainsmokers, Katy Perry, Calvin Harris, David Guetta, and more.
After making music together for years, Miami natives Ian and Julian decided to form Black V Neck in 2017. These titans of weird and wonky house hit the ground running after being signed to Shiba San’s label Basement Leak and subsequently to Dirtybird. This duo keeps their schedule fully booked throughout the year dropping bouncy tech house around the way. You will want to see why they are so in demand right now.
Cut Snake has an interesting story. They started as two surfers from Australia who traveled the globe and became fixated on tech house. After working together for a while, they parted ways to go solo. Leigh Sedly kept the Cut Snake moniker, and Paul Fisher continued producing as Fisher (yes, THAT Fisher). Cut Snake is known for a massive stage presence at shows and destroying dancefloors.
Okay, so Duke Dumont may be a household name with multiple Grammy Award nominations, but that doesn't mean he should be overlooked. He was mentored by former Major Lazer member Switch and came up writing remixes for pop stars. However the release of mammoth house stompers like "Need U(100%)" and "Won't Look Back" solidified his place as a bonafide star. His sets are a solid mix of big room beats, heart-stopping vocals, and bouncy basslines for a perfect combination fitting for one of the world’s largest stages.
Lee Foss brings a special blend of tech house, synth-heavy techno, and deep house. He has an astute ability to transition seamlessly between sub-genres raising and lowering the energy of the dancefloor as needed. He's proved his curation skills are expert level as well, the incredible catalog he's built at his label Repopulate Mars includes work from John Summit, Shiba San, CID, Martin Ikin, Dillon Nathaniel, and Cloonee. Lee Foss is a true tastemaker.
VNSSA is another Dirtybird standout who has steadily carved a name for herself over the last couple of years. Her live sets cover all genres of house and techno, although don’t be surprised to hear some classic disco or booty breaks. VNSSA is a dynamic and wide-ranging producer who's unafraid to experiment and get a little weird. All in the service of rocking dancefloors.
Words by Derek Southworth.