More than half a decade into his career, Australian producer Golden Features has well-and-truly established himself as one of the country’s premier electronic acts amassing over 120 million global streams, one platinum and four gold records to his name. Over the years Tom Stell’s musical evolution has seen the producer push boundaries in aesthetic and sound revealing more of himself to fans and slowly unmasking himself in the process.
Stell instantly became a festival and airwave staple with his debut EP, driven by the success of the Nicole Millar-featuring ‘Tell Me’. Never one to rely on a formula, he developed his sound further on the following EP XXIV which housed two of his biggest songs ‘Telescope’ with K. Flay and ‘No One’ with Thelma Plum. That was only to be topped by standalone drop ‘Wolfie’ featuring Julia Stone, a track that has since had over 20 million streams.
With the debut album on hand, he developed a live show that took the Golden Features experience even higher. The SECT headline tour saw him sell over 15,000 tickets across six shows. He also closed out the 2018/2019 edition of Falls Festival with a triumphant victory lap that left a lasting impression. SECT lent itself to the live arena as Stell took the opportunity to take fans on a trip through dark, pulsating beats and dizzying experimentation. “The sets need to flow like an opera,” he says. “It needs sections that are down-beat. It needs to flow and take you on a journey.”
The album was a personal work that saw Stell allow very few collaborators into his world. It had just one featured vocalist with the producer admitting he’s, “very particular about how things are done.” A drive to keep creating music that sounds new, however, has seen him enter a collaborative stage of his career that has already resulted in projects with The Presets and ODESZA plus a production credit on Katy Perry’s 2017 record Witness.
As always, Stell is already looking ahead to his next creative turn. He has been reinvigorated once again by time immersing himself in the Berlin techno scene. There’s a clear direction for what he wants to do yet, not that anybody will be able to guess it.
“You lose scope of your work the more you work on it,” Stell says. “I’m all about getting the ideas down quick...getting the heart of the song in it and then going in to refine the song until it shines.”
Stell’s next move is a mystery until it’s unveiled but there’s one thing we know for sure. He’s always looking for a detour into the next unexplored space of electronic music.
Josh and Amy Dowdle are Lastlings, the Gold Coast sibling duo who have taken their place as new leaders in the sweet spot between live and electronic. Amy contributes her double-edged sword of intricate, wistful lyrics with her own ethereal vocals at center stage while Josh complements with perfect electronic-driven synergy, injecting sweeping synth work and robust bass lines to weave together dynamic and emotional dancefloor moments.
The duo harbor a powerful, slow-burning energy and a deep dedication to their craft that has set them far and apart across today’s musical landscape. These Lastlings traits were likely inherited from their Japanese roots, impressed upon them throughout the trips they spent balancing the duality of the high-energy, electrified city of Tokyo and the tranquility of Aomori, a small fishing village on the northern side of the main island and their grandparents’ hometown. “Every time we’d visit the city, there would be something new that we hadn’t yet experienced -- like we were venturing into the unknown,” they share. “But upon returning to the smaller towns, there is such beauty in the simplicity and tradition of Japan that deeply grounds us. This balance between simplicity and complexity had great influence on us, and the concept of the album.”
Lastlings are ready to debut their first album, the aptly-titled First Contact. Partially written in a remote stillness of a snow-capped house in that Japanese village and fine-tuned and finished all across Australia, the record aims to capture emotions that feel familiar, while transporting listeners to a universe far away -- one that feels closer to fiction than reality.
The pair are entering into their new chapter with grand support. Championed by fellow Australian superstars RÜFÜS DU SOL, Lastlings have also been warmly welcomed to the band’s own label, Rose Avenue and toured alongside the band at iconic venues like Colorado’s Red Rocks and the Los Angeles State Historic Park. They are recognized and lauded by industry-defining platforms like Billboard, NME and Mixmag and featured within the pages of cultural paragons like Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, Paper, Flaunt, and W Magazine.
First Contact is a transcendent debut, and marks only the beginning for Lastlings -- a forward thinking duo and ultimate combination of art, tradition and determination. It’s an auspicious first glimpse into the universe, as built and told by Amy and Josh Dowdle, and a promise of what’s still yet to come.
Motez’ soundscape pushes the boundaries of your regular club producer, going way back before he was making wholesome, wall-to-wall club cuts and rocking festivals stages. His classical piano know how and clear influences of the 90’s allows him to flex his skills and musical-taste across all of his releases, chalking up six Hype Machine #1s, an ARIA Gold single and dropping official remixes for Disclosure, Sam Smith, Goldlink and Ellie Goulding. Motez is also a regular on mix series Diplo & Friends, Beats1 Radio, Triple J Mix Up and George FM.
Motez’ back catalogue across Sweat It Out/Club Sweat, Food Music and Universal/AATW speaks for itself. His streak of infectious dance-driven releases continued on from 2016’s ‘Down Like This’ ft. Tkay Maidza to 2017’s ‘Praise’, which led him to his first ARIA Certified Gold single, ‘The Future’ ft. Antony & Cleopatra. Three years in the making, ‘The Future’ is Motez’ most personal offering to date, receiving support from BBC- R1, KCRW, Live105, Triple J, and amassing over 20 millions streams.
Motez finished off 2019 with two heavy club hitters ‘Toggle’ and ‘Where Have You Been’. The warm groove that is ‘Toggle' filled dancefloors internationally, gaining support from Moguai, T. Williams, Claptone and Idris Elba after premiering on Danny Howard’s Beats 1 radio. Described as ‘dance music with a purpose’, Motez flared his production abilities on ‘Where Have You Been’, premiering on the Playa at Burning Man, and followed it with ‘Patience’ a progressive tech lift, lined with a motivational undertone to kick off 2020.
As the reality of COVID19 hit, Motez’ focus shifted to a completely new body of work titled ‘Soulitude’. Five emotive, ambient, electronic compositions that stemmed from his newfound state of isolation. The EP showcased a brand new side to Motez’ ever-evolving production capabilities, and was premiered through a grand sunset live-performance stream from the Fleurieu Peninsula in South Australia, streaming to over 20,000 people in the first 24 hours.
Coming out of the COIVD19 cloud, Motez’ hunger to give back to his club fans will continue with more dance-floor driven releases on Sweat It Out, Lane 8’s imprint This Never Happened and Armada's Electronic Elements. Expect Motez to continue pushing the boundaries as he explores new sounds and ways to produce what is his most exciting work yet.
On the road and to the stage, Motez has played to thousands over the 2019/20 New Years period at Beyond The Valley, Wildlands and Origin Fields following a slammed 2019 of headline shows around Australia including a sold out Universal Sydney and festivals Side By Side, ForTheLove and Warehouse Collective Sydney. 2020 continues to heat up with shows all over Summer and Autumn.
The birth of Bag Raiders dates back to the clubs of Sydney’s mid-aughts, when the duo were part of the wave of now-iconic producers and DJs who put Australian dance music on the world stage. They cut their teeth spinning at the city’s legendary Bang Gang DJs parties and began turning out electro edits and remixes of their own, studio experiments that culminated in the release of their ‘Turbo Love’ EP in 2008.
The B-side to that EP was a little track called ‘Shooting Stars’, which Modular Records quickly picked up and gave a single release the following year. The rest is history – ‘Shooting Stars’ was an instant smash, going Triple Platinum, snagging a top 20 spot in that year’s triple j Hottest 100 and leaving a legacy as one of Australian dance music’s finest moments. The single has amassed half a billion streams online and clocked over 32 Platinum or Gold plaques worldwide.
In 2010 the boys shared their beloved self-titled debut album including ‘Shooting Stars’, scoring ARIA Award nominations for Best Dance Release, and Dance Work of the Year on their ever-catchy single ‘Sunlight’ (which achieved Gold certification). ‘Way Back Home’ is also Gold certified in Germany after a sync with telecom Vodafone in 2011 and the album overall peaked at #7 on the ARIA Albums Chart.
After years at work on their most exciting music yet, production dream team Jack Glass and Chris Stracey shared their highly-anticipated second album ‘Horizons’, on Universal Music Australia. The album peaked at #43 on ARIA’s Digital Album Chart and garnered tastemaker support across the board at key radio stations BBC Radio 1, triple j, Sirius XM, KEXP, KCRW, Flux FM and Hit Network plus a slew of support from DSP’s and blogs with the likes of Billboard, Mixmag, Indie Shuffle, Magnetic Mag, Clash Mag, Highsnobiety and Earmilk singing their praises.
Conceived, written and recorded all over the globe, it serves as a digital collage of more than five years of life, inspiration and experience. ‘Horizons’ became the perfect title for an album with a lot of history but, most importantly, an eye to the future. “Making this album has been a journey for us, a long one,” Chris says. “Horizons made sense because the closer you get to it, the further away it gets from you. We’re always moving toward something and we try to express that through the music.”
Since the release of ‘Horizons’ the duo have taken to the live stage, nailing a sold out national run in Australia before hitting a slew of sweaty dates in Indonesia and onto the US in 2020, with not a ticket to spare in Los Angeles, New York City and San Francisco.
It’s been a nonstop run for Bag Raiders since the release of their self-titled debut. In the past few years the pair have turned out a set of EPs that have pushed their sound into new territory, from the tropical sonics of ‘Nairobi’ through to the silky vocals of ‘Beat Me To The Punch’, ‘Checkmate’ and the vibrancy of ‘Friend Inside’ and ‘Waterfalls’. A busy tour schedule has taken them around the world, seeing Glass and Stracey play a 30-date string of shows across North America, multiple sold out tours of their homeland, while supporting icons Duran Duran and Chic. Bag Raiders have slayed crowds at festivals including Splendour in the Grass, Beyond The Valley, NYE in the Park, Wine Machine and Bestival Bali, whilst keeping one foot in the club world, with regular DJ shows around Australia and remixes for the likes of Riton, Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs, Crooked Colours and Banks.
The story of Bag Raiders is already the stuff of legend but in 2020, the Sydney duo prove that their best has only just begun.
Melbourne’s Stace Cadet has fast become a tech-house favourite among dj’s and audiences alike - since surfacing in the scene in 2016.
Known for his bass-driven house and catchy toplines, there’s a strong chance you have heard his words and melodies floating on top of some of your favourite dance records. since his first release, ‘molly happy’ on medium rare recordings, stace has been busy playing festivals and headlining shows around Australia and New Zealand.
Stace Cadet has managed to acrew four Aria Chart no.1’s, two beatport no.1’s, two mtv dance video no.1’s & records added to rotation on triple j in Australia and Sirius XM in the US.
His work has also featured in mixes and radio shows by Diplo, Claude Vonstroke and Oliver Heldens on stations like BBC Radio 1.
Stace has been lucky enough to collaborate with the likes of - Kyle Watson, Volac, Rrotik and Benson through labels like Ministry of Sound Australia, Insomniac, Armada, Club Sweat and Medium Rare.
2020 is looking bright for the moon-man, his latest collaboration with KLP, ‘Energy’ is on the up and he has records on the way with Tommy Trash, Murci, Maximono and heaps more.
Houston, no problem here - just dance.
You might’ve seen Ebony DJing at a club or festival near you. When she’s not trawling the internet for new music, she’s probably watching some trash tv or expanding her already overflowing wardrobe.
Whether it be festivals like Beyond The Valley, sidebyside, or some of the most infamous disco dens around Australia, Mell Hall has got your dance-floor covered!
Hailing from Melbourne, Mell is already the goto DJ for some of the worlds best touring in the disco/funk/house realm - Disclosure, Basement Jaxx, Crazy P, Norman Jay, Todd Terry, Late Nite Tuff Guy and Weiss - just to name a few!
A Mell Hall set wouldn’t be complete without one of her signature disco edits guaranteed to get you up on your feet. Last year saw her delve into studio land with Club Sweat tapping her on the shoulder to remix David Penn and Milk & Sugar’s ‘Happy People’. Following the success of that remix, Mell added her disco flavour to one of 2020’s biggest dance records, ‘Energy’ via Stace Cadet and KLP, out now through Sony/Medium Rare Recordings. Mell is now primed to drop her debut single ‘Knock Knock’, which is just around the corner…
Your disco needs you - and doesn’t Mell Hall know it.