Presented by Hydeout Festival
Next year, Hydeout festival, slated to be the biggest ever live music event in Singapore will make its debut staging.
Even at this early stage, its line-up includes some of the most buzzing upper echelon artists in pop culture. And even at this early stage, the sum title of their musical resumés is astounding. Over the course of two weekends, attendees will be able to receive these hits live and in the flesh in the tried-and-tested grounds at The Meadow, Gardens By The Bay.
Below, we present a sneak peek of what you can expect at the festival come April, accompanied by a playlist.
‘TURN DOWN FOR WHAT’
Rare is the hit song that transcends its vitality. Six years since its release, this long-residing banger exists in the cultural lexicon as turn-up fodder, meme and a reminder of Lil Jon’s delightfully abrasive charms. At a time when the foundations of the monogenre was only just graduating from idea to manifestation, ‘Turn Down For What’ was the gateway drug ushering mainstream pop listeners into the sound and lifestyle of populist EDM. You won’t be wrong in thinking of it as the Rosetta Stone of made-for-festival trap. It opened the floodgates for a grittier but more colouristic style of party fuel – and it made big room sound bigger.
Though he is typically lumped in with the EDM crowd, DJ Snake’s 4/4 powers extend beyond its vernacular. On 2018’s ‘Taki Taki’, his hit-making touch scaled a new peak. Invoking moombahton’s sublime hip-shaking thrust, he flexed his contact list, summoned three of the biggest artists in the contemporary zeitgeist to chime in on a destined-for-immortality song that juxtaposed R&B’s soul-heaving warmth with a commensurate measure of sweat-drenched sensuality. It’s got hooks, bounce and an inviting spirit that is impossible to refuse – taki taki, ¡rumba!
‘LET ME LOVE YOU’
Let’s face it: Heartbreak is more relatable than love. This song’s billion-plus numbers on Spotify alone, is but superficial proof of that sad reality. Justin Bieber, on his remorseful tip, cut an effectively devastated figure here. Heartbroken IRL – the song is purported to be a plea to his then-ex Selena Gomez to take him back – he convincingly emotes, imbuing the clinical songwriting with a blood-streaked humanity. As a blockbuster, pop-adjacent anthem, it checks all the right boxes, including the era-appropriate tropical house filip. But its teary-eyed, panoramically bleak outlook gives it a timelessness that is a gold standard unto itself.
Bear with this nugget of trivia: Along with ‘Purple Swag’, ‘Peso’ is part of the diptych that secured Rocky a $3 million deal with Sony/RCA. With these two songs, Rocky would drown all of rapdom in a deluge of codeine until Atlanta’s trap soldiers switched things out again. That wave may have passed but its influence is foundational. Sweeping a sample from the S.O.S Band into its drugged-out embrace, the song also showcases Rocky’s lyrical ability within its staggering, narcotised momentum. Give it up for the first coming of Rocky and the Mob!
‘WILD FOR THE NIGHT’
“F*** being polite!” – Isn’t that such an obnoxiously fun thing to scream out? Armed to the teeth with an Earth-shaking beat from the brostep gawd Skrillex, Rocky knew his mainstream takeover was complete. Though built more for the club and the festival circuit than the streets, this Skrillex assist is forged in the tough-talking muck that bred New York’s best spitters. There’s not much to unpack here: It’s a turn up call to arms for all the ragers to take the party to the next reeling frontier.
‘PRAISE THE LORD (DA SHINE)’
Is this song a blessing? Yes, most definitely.
The transatlantic link-up of Rocky, and Skepta, who features and produces this outing, gave both one of the best songs of their careers and the world a new song to dance and live to. Rocky reprises his militantly relaxed veneer here but gives his more experimental side more airtime. Over a stylish flute-accented beat, he weaves a deluxe narrative mesh that sublimates religious urgings into a secular, but no-less-spiritual manifesto that allows him to flex like so: "My shades, Dior, my pants, velour / Create, explore, expand, conquer”.
‘WAKE UP IN THE SKY’
Guwop can do anything.
Here, he proves that he can get on a simmering R&B song with Bruno Mars, and sound perfectly at home. Just as in his mainstay of trap, Gucci makes pop his own with his presence on the mic. Perfect for the occasion, his flow is silken and relaxed. He takes his time with his flexes: “I stay fresh as hell, take a pic, I might as well, hell /Drop the top and take a selfie, my car drives itself”, sounds exquisite delivered in that knowingly chill pace.
Gucci 2.0 is a boon for fans of music period. With an artist this versatile, all you have to do is sit back and enjoy the ride.
‘I GET THE BAG’
In his 20-year career, Gucci has unearthed many path-lighting artists, one of them being the Migos. On his 11th album, Mr. Davis, he brings back the now-beyond-successful trio to partake in his victory lap. This is trap Gucci at his most bombastic and charismatic: Charm and aggression coat every syllable of every luxurious boast. “They get the bag, have to cut it in half / Stop the comparin', y'all makin' me laugh / Need the rehab, I'm addicted to cash / Convertible Wop, convertible top”.
‘BACK ON ROAD’
Ever came back from a time when you weren’t at your best? This is the anthem of claiming the top spot once again.
Over an ice-cold soundscape courtesy of Boi-1da and Murda Beatz, Gucci and Drake trade bars about returning from time away from the arena that is rap. Gucci goes in, affirming his sui generis rep with chest-thumping self-belief: “I'm on an island by myself / I'm my only competition so I'm battling with myself”. At his best, as he is here, Gucci is transcendence incarnate.
‘OLD DAYS’ FEAT. SAN HOLO
It’s one thing to start your own label, but it’s another to create a movement. What began as a passion project to give their friends a platform to release music has turned into a bona fide dance music phenomenon that has been growing stronger over the course of the last five years.
The Barong Family movement kicked into full gear in 2016 when Yellow Claw gathered everyone in the label to work on a cottage in France on a collaborative project, and ‘Old Days’ is the soundtrack that led the way. "Family is everything" is Barong Family's motto, and no track captures that essence quite like 'Old Days', a track that has now been seared into the brains of every Barong Family fan in the world.
THE ‘KAOLO’ SERIES
There hasn’t been a series of releases spanning multiple years that has caught the attention of fans quite as much as Yellow Claw’s ‘Kaolo’ releases. ‘Kaolo’ made its debut in 2013, and for six years, has been at the forefront of Yellow Claw’s EP and album releases. Whenever the duo announce new music, the most common question you’d get is “Kaolo???” The 'Kaolo' series now has four entries.
The ‘Kaolo’ series has become such a staple in the duo’s mixes, that they haven’t played a single show since its inception in 2013 without playing a ‘Kaolo’ track. When you hear the words “It’s a trap!” at one of Yellow Claw’s sets, you know things are about to get wild.
While ‘Amsterdamned’ is Yellow Claw’s freshest tune as of time of writing, there’s a lot that has gone into the track – and its accompaniments – that make it one of the duo’s most ambitious releases yet.
‘Amsterdamned’ had been in the works in the Yellow Claw camp for over year before the duo finally released it to the public. And with the track, came a whole new universe. In conjunction with the track’s release, which was timed with Yellow Claw’s annual pop-up store during Amsterdam Dance Week, a plethora of merchandise dropped in support of the track.
But that’s not all. Yellow Claw clearly have a bigger picture in mind for the track, as it came with a dark and gritty manga-style music video, as well as a comic book that further explore the vampiric lore of the music video. With this, Yellow Claw plan to build upon the newly created Amsterdamned universe for the foreseeable future.
‘Animals’ is the singular release that has ultimately become the quintessential, defining track in electronic music today, and more significantly, propelled Martin Garrix to global stardom and positioned him as one of the most sensational DJs that comfortably straddles the line between electronic and pop music now. It also allowed him to become the youngest artist to chart at #1 on Beatport. An iconic big room anthem, ‘Animals’ is defined by swelling synths and swooping bass drops that pull back at the last second, keeping listeners on edge from start to finish.
'IN THE NAME OF LOVE' FEAT. BEBE REXHA
‘In the Name of Love’ is the sonic manifestation of the all-consuming intoxication that is love and the conscious free-fall into its depths. In collaboration with Bebe Rexha, he delivers a wholly soul-shattering effect in this track, where Rexha’s powerful, resplendent vocals and the iconic drop after the hook weave together to become the heady, emotional core. In the accompanying visuals, the motif of water features heavily throughout, alluding to how love is simultaneously drowning and salvation.
'SCARED TO BE LONELY' FEAT. DUA LIPA
An anthem for the heartbroken, ‘Scared to be Lonely’ once again attests to Garrix’s affinity for using matters of the heart as fodder for dance music. In this confessional track, which delivers messages that resonate poignantly with those who wish to forget the universal fear of solitude and simply lose themselves in the moment, Dua Lipa sheds her brave front and wallows in the shadows of insecurity, fleshing out the modern phenomenon of loneliness, especially in romance.
‘ONLY WANT YOU’
I don’t think Rita Ora’s voice is as celebrated as it should be. Granted, in her bid for A-list-dom, she’s had to tread the waters of slick dance-pop. But her instrument is a powerful, nuanced and supernaturally earthy one. This song is one of those times she bestows it to the listener in its full glory. Down on her knees, her coo is radiant, so utterly beautiful and tragic: “I don't want somebody like you / I only want you, I only want you” and underscored by tear-stained confessions such as, “I don't wanna wear another mini dress / To impress a potential problem / I don't wanna spend the night at someone's place / To fill the space that you used to walk in”.
‘LET YOU LOVE ME’
You know you’re a pop star when you say “I” and it amplifies as “We”.
With ‘Let You Love Me’, Rita Ora underlined in red how difficult it is to let someone in. She animates the hook with her high-impact treatment, scaling her gorgeous voice to make the epic declaration, “I wish that I could let you love / Wish that I could let you love me”. When art imitates sincerely, you fall into it without question. If she was cynical about it, this song would automatically ring false and cheap. But she keeps it pure and real.
Though it’s a big-budget blockbuster, ‘Anywhere’ packs a visceral force that you can’t deflect. Once again, Rita’s lovely voice, more than the expensive production, is the centrepiece. It’s a lovely proposition, emanating warmth, urgency and empathy, the trifecta that makes her an icon we root for and believe.
This time, she dedicates her instrument to love’s disregard for geographical specificity – there is no distance it can’t conquer and no place it can’t make better.
‘Toulouse’ is the viral hit that paved the way ahead for Nicky Romero’s career. Following its release, the track remained at the Top Ten chart on Beatport for a noteworthy period of time and persists as one of the most timeless tracks in electronic music today, standing at 424 million views on YouTube and 29 million streams on Spotify. Produced at a period where he was heavily influenced by acid house, ‘Toulouse’ encompasses a hypnotic melody line and tinkering hi-hats.
'I COULD BE THE ONE' FEAT. AVICII
‘I Could be the One’ was the highly anticipated single between Nicky Romero and Swedish DJ Avicii unveiled in 2012, which subsequently became his most well-known track, achieving worldwide success, dominating charts across Europe and becoming his first chart-topper in the UK. Featuring vocals from Swedish artist Noonie Bao, the track is also accompanied by a poignant music video with a wry twist at the end, urging listeners to live their lives to the fullest.
One of Nicky Romero’s latest radio-ready, dance-pop offerings, ‘Distance’ occupies the spellbinding space between soulful melodies and groovy, dance-influenced expression. Olivia Holt conveys lovelorn sentiments and the heart-wrenching reality of an unbreachable distance with someone by your side. With its cross-genre appeal, this track sets out to mesmerise with syncopated beats and Holt’s heady, pop-infused vocals that intertwine to arrive at ultimate peak at the hooks.
San Holo’s journey to become one of dance music’s most interesting and refreshing artists has been nothing short of exquisite, and ‘Light’ plays a major role in that. Sonically, it’s one of Sander’s greatest trap-heavy tracks. Its ability to bring a dead crowd to life is incomparable to anything within the trap and future-bass subgenres. The track, while commercially successful, is also a die-hard fan-favourite. Fun fact: Sometimes, San Holo plays the track more than once during live performances because of the sheer fan service it brings.
Before there was ‘Light’, there was ‘We Rise’. Seen by many fans as the predecessor to ‘Light’, ‘We Rise’ features the same optimistic and can-do spirit that fans have grown to love and expect from San Holo. A no-nonsense trap and future-bass classic, the song is often the highlight of any fans’ night whenever they hear it. If the significance of a track’s ability to change peoples’ moods could be recognised and celebrated, San Holo would undeniably win damn near every award in the field.
Growing up, San Holo was a massive fan of guitar-driven music, so it should come as no surprise that the talented musician would combine his love for trap and future bass with guitar work. What is a surprise, however, is how well it works, and how beautiful it is. While San Holo’s debut record, album1, is filled to the brim with incredible tracks, ‘worthy’ stands out as the cut’s finest offering, with choruses that seamlessly switch between trap synths and punchy chords to create something unlike anything you’ve ever heard before.
‘NEW RULES – ALISON WONDERLAND REMIX’
In a genre largely run by men, Alison Wonderland stands out as one of the best to do it, and she proves that time and time again, regardless of genre. Tasked with putting her own spin on Dua Lipa’s smash hit ‘New Rules’, Alison reminded everyone why sometimes, you don’t send a guy to do a girl’s job. Alison used her true understanding of the track’s meaning to reveal a darker twist on the track, one that has been praised by fans and critics alike.
Coming off a long period in between studio albums, Alison Wonderland knew she had to draw listeners in with the opening track of her sophomore album, Awake. That track, is ‘Good Enough’. Trained as a classical cellist growing up, Alison picked up the cello for the first time in a long time to create a dark, and haunting soundscape that would flawlessly suit the vibe of the album. The track slowly builds from singular, menacing piano keys, to incorporate classical instruments, that amplify just how epic the track is, culminating in one of her hardest drops yet.
It’s not easy to take the darkest parts of your soul and bare them to the world. That’s exactly what Alison does with ‘Happy Place’, as she tackles the topic of depression. ‘Happy Place’ plays on the wild ups and downs of mental illness. It opens with airy strings and grounding chimes as she sings about her struggles to remain in sunny spaces. Tensions grow as the build leads to a jungle gym of clashing noise, resulting in one of Alison's wildest creations to date.
‘KILLA’ FEAT. ELLIPHANT (SLUSHII REMIX)
How do you take an already-great song and make it better? Simple, give it to Slushii for a remix. In 2016, Wiwek and Skrillex put out ‘Killa’, one of the most innovative songs in dance music in a long time, thanks to Wiwek’s patented jungle terror sound. A couple of months later, Slushii premiered his bass-heavy remix of the track and blew minds all around the world. Dance music moves very quickly, yet his remix still gets plays at every major festival in the world in 2019. That’s saying something.
‘NEVER LET YOU GO (FEAT. SOFIA REYES)’
As a well-known nice guy, it should come as no surprise that Slushii would be an absolute master at putting out great, light-hearted tracks. ‘Never Let You Go’ is testament to that. The tropical track is one of Slushii’s most colourful and fun releases yet, and never fails to get people on the dancefloor swaying. The build-up is simple, with a catchy bass-line and percussions, until it slowly builds to an infectious tropical future bass drop that will long sit among Slushii’s best releases.
‘WATCH YO BACK’
Slushii’s remix of ‘Killa’ and his uber-fun track ‘Never Let You Go’ show us two different sides of the producer. He can turn up the bass if he wants to, or he can throw out a light and fun track. ‘Watch Yo Back’ is the perfect marriage between those two sides. What starts off as a light, house-like track with Slushii’s signature high-pitched vocals and future bass synths, soon takes a dark turn to clearly reveal what the lyrics have been saying all along: “When you’re in the streets, you better watch yo’ back.” And then the drop hits, you’re left wondering what just happened, as a wall of bass hits you so hard, you feel it.
'SHOW ME LOVE'
Sam Feldt’s remake of ‘Show Me Love’, originally released by Robin S., is wholly affecting and uplifting. Achieving the status of an instant hit, it unveils Feldt’s trademark house sound that is reminiscent of summer and eventually peaked at number 4 on the UK Singles Chart. Marked by a thumping, effervescent deep house beat, tinkering melodies and chirpy sounds of wildlife, this shimmering track features the thick, lush vocals of R&B crooner Kimberly Anne, which juxtaposes against the bubbling lightness of the beats.
Sam Feldt’s latest international hit ‘Post Malone’ arrived along with his most recent EP Magnets. A scintillating ode to the rapper that encompasses a fervent, carpe diem message, the track is an undeniable party anthem, explicitly contains the lyrics, "Tonight, we go all night long / We party like Post Malone”. Dutch singer RANI, whose vocals drip with pure heat, amps up the already-brimming energy in the danceable track.
'WAY BACK HOME'
After Korean R&B artist SHAUN’s ‘Way Back Home’ garnered millions of streams, Sam Feldt rolled out his own rendition of it, featuring the smooth vocals of Conor Maynard. Keeping most of the elements that gave the original its massive success, Feldt gives it the edge that makes it dance 99floor material, accentuating the exuberant tropical house sound that also overlaps with his distinctive sound.
‘Afterdark’, MYRNE’s most well-known work, is a glorious future bass track featuring Californian singer-songwriter Aviella. Grounded by pulsing synth chords and thick brass undertones, this track strikes a delicate balance between its throbbing intensity and ethereality with the lightness and fragility that characterises Aviella’s haunting vocals. With this exquisite track that embodies beauty and mystery, MYRNE attests to the worthiness of his international standing and his label as a young, musical wunderkind today.
Following his breakthrough track ‘Afterdark’, MYRNE lives up to expectations with ‘Confessions’, solidifying his future bass sound. Lending her otherworldly vocals to the track, Cozi Zuehlsdorff adds a potent dose of emotion to the frigid beats and exultant drops, overflowing with dazzling melodies and rumbling brass. Conveying an empowering message of taking control and walking away, this track sends a different message from other lovelorn music, which is to stand up for oneself, especially in the face of love.
One of the singles off his latest album In Search Of Solitude, ‘Starsigns’ lends itself to the emotional core of the record. Tender and earnest, this track alludes to an underlying profundity beneath its romance-driven themes, simultaneously placing regret on a pinnacle and yearning for an outcome in the future that does not end in heartache. In collaboration with Sophie Tweed Simmons, MYRNE creates a wholly resonating track that mourns love and craves for it as well.
Hydeout Festival 2020 is set to take place from 10 to 11 April and 17 to 18 April 2020 at The Meadow, Gardens by the Bay, Singapore. Early Bird passes are now onsale. Get your tickets here. #HydeoutFestival
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Check out Bandwagon's specially curated Hydeout playlist below.
Check out Hydeout's official playlist below.