Before you raise the pitchforks, my trancefamily, hear me out. When the full lineup for Something Wicked came out there was much ado about it after the initial reveal of the headliners for this year. I won’t lie and say I was moved by the headliners. The only one announced I really wanted to see was Hardwell and that’s because my curiosity has gotten the best of me. I want to see the Dutchman. I also want to see Ghastly, Goldroom, Louis the Child, Marshmello, Slushii, and artists that fall outside of the realm of *gasp* trance. Slated to represent trance and progressive house are Gareth Emery, Ilan Bluestone, Jason Ross, Grum, and Andrew Bayer. There is a lot of love being shown to Anjunabeats on this lineup and if you are a fan of the Anjunabeats sound(s), then you were likely happy with the announcement. If you are not a fan of the Anjunabeats sound, I can see why the lineup might have come across as disappointing.
Yes, the majority of the artists have been through Texas before. I went to the Anjunabeats Tour at Stereo Live Houston back in February of this year and had my mind blown by the likes of Jason Ross, Grum, Ilan Bluestone, and Andrew Bayer. They were all good in their own right, especially Grum. Grum is an absolute treat and I don’t mind seeing him, Jason Ross, and Ilan Bluestone again. Gareth Emery was just in Dallas at Stereo Live Dallas last week, but I have not seen him live yet. The album 100 Reasons to Live restored my faith in Emery and since then I haven’t been let down by him this year. The Gareth Emery I fell in love with is back and is producing some really good stuff. I saw him in a different light when I learned of his Youtube #MakeitHappen series that offers advice on the industry. The tipping point for me was his set at Tomorrowland in Belgium in July of this year. You can view that great performance below.
I would like to think that redemption is also possible for Arty, an artist that appears on the bill that I at first was unsure about. Arty used to make some fantastic progressive trance and progressive house tunes but then his sound started drifting towards a more mainstream style of those genres. Back in 2012, Arty came to Rich’s in Houston and he was awesome. He is a much different producer now. I am not too taken with his debut album Glorious as it is all over the place genre wise, but I can respect that he wants to experiment and move beyond the Anjunabeats box he was put in when he first came out. He doesn’t have to play trance, but I hope to hear something I like. Speculation aside, let me tell you why we, as trancefamily, should come out to Something Wicked later next month.
Something Wicked is not a trance festival so to expect a number of quality trance acts is expecting too much in my opinion. With that said, we have to give Nightculture a reason to keep on booking trance and progressive house artists. If we don’t show up, what reason would Nightculture have to book trance at festivals? They could easily have filled the bill with more trap and mainstage edm acts, but they didn’t. Is the lineup perfect? No, but there is a little something for everyone. I am looking forward to hearing artists I have never seen live before and make new friends. Here’s to it not being rained out.