Weekly Roundup LXX (The last episode)

Yeah, you read it right. This is the final edition of the Weekly Roundup. It was an immense pleasure writing this, although getting delayed frequently many times. I started this back in 2021 to talk about the best new records in the scene and found its use as a deserving space for providing exposure to upcoming and talented acts by mentioning them besides top aliases.

It was absolutely my intention to keep the roundup going to come up with a weekly list of must-listen records, but I won’t lie that it’s a tedious (but rewarding) job.

Luckily for the finale, we have one of the best Fridays I have seen in a while. Madeon, Pryda, Zedd, and more headliners are on the list.

As always, thanks for reading this series. Hoping to bring back a renewed, refreshed version of this very soon.

Calvin Harris, Sam Smith – Desire

The Scottish hitmaker has fully embraced the 90s trance era and we are here for it! Reuniting with the “Promises” collaborator Sam Smith, and presented another potential late summer hit “Desire.”

As the theme goes, Harris donned the peak-time trance sound for this track as well. Sam Smith’s vocals sprinkle magic dust to enhance the hypnotic mood, helped further by the pounding drum and bassline set. Other stars of this show are the usual piano riff from “Miracle,” with another fluttering flute lead that adds an exotic touch to the song. While this might not immediately precede the pull “Miracle” had on me, its compelling sound will be on repeat for me at the moment!

John Summit, Hayla – Where You Are (Zedd Remix)

In an out-of-the-blue appearance, Zedd broke radio silence with an unexpected remix of House music’s trending moniker John Summit with a classic twist on his latest single.

For the remix of “Where You Are,” Zedd summoned his mid-2010s melodic Electro House roots that weirdly enough, sounds refreshing to hear in a modern context. Starting with his favorite clock-ticking sound, the American alias slowly built a delicate piano-laden breakdown around the vocals from Hayla. After a while, a full-on typical transition rushes into the supersaw heavy drops. While it is rare to hear this style nowadays, this version doesn’t miss going with the old-school approach.

Madeon – Gonna Be Good (Live Edit)

Releasing a VIP edit of his comeback single for this year, Madeon put an interesting spin on “Gonna Be Good.”

The French avant-garde DJ/producer effortlessly blends styles on this track, using his recognizable and dreamy vocals with radiant melodic-bass synths to create sizeable hooks. Further comes the experimental mentality, which brings varying cadences and influences from other dance genres such as glitchy Electro effects. Pretty pleasant to listen to!

Pryda – Of Me

After what was a long wait, Eric Prydz brought back his mastermind side alias Pryda, which made plenty of strides in the progressive house genre with its boundary-pushing tracks. Presenting an EP of three tracks, the Swedish star made it clear that he hasn’t got rusty with the darker moniker.

“Of Me” brings the classic pluck-driven progressive sound, rushing arrangements with a sense of groove that only Prydz can achieve with his unparalleled experience. Using only the bespoke lead synth, the track puts forth a trancey and hypnotic mood with a striding bassline and snare-punching groove. A fantastic EP, counting the other track “Return.”

Showtek, Justin Prime – Cannonball (Will Sparks Remix)

Revamping the 2014’s notorious big room dancefloor shaker hit “Cannonball,” Will Sparks modernized the classic with his signature bounce and techno sound.

This remix retains the anthemic riff from the original to give enough dose of nostalgia, while re-fitted with modern festival techno synths and composition. What comes after is a brisk drop with screechy lead and rumbling techno kickdrums. The finale doesn’t disappoint either, bringing in the original drop melody and transposing it on the said elements. In all, this is a deserving re-work on the beloved EDM hit!

Armin van Buuren, Sharon den Adel – In and Out Of Love (Innellea Remix)

If you ask me what is one of the most fetching trance hits from the veteran Armin van Buuren, it is undoubtedly “In and Out of Love.” Receiving many remixes over the year, the song still remains equally haunting and memorable.

Renowned melodic techno act Innellea gave a top-notch remix treatment, using darker and moodier sound with encompassing synths and marching cadence. It has that Afterlife theme to it (since the moniker has several releases in that imprint), emanating a sublime ambiance that grabs attention entirely. It’s great to see ASOT commission such remix duties!

Paul van Dyk, Ciaran McAuley – Someone Like You

In a great synergy, the genre-pioneer Paul van Dyk joined forces with the uplifting trance specialist Ciaran McAuley for an enchanting track titled “Someone Like You.”

As expected, the song gracefully moves with a danceable and wistfully hypnotic arp melody over dynamic arrangements, while short vocal harmonies amp up the emotions. Especially the breakdown conjures plenty of spacious and melodic atmosphere with euphoric strings and somber tones. Further, it doesn’t adhere to the usual sound selection and goes for a lighter and streamlined progressive trance sound.

Adam Avant – So Numb

“So Numb” is a valiant effort by the Swedish moniker Adam Avant, who deployed an enticing mix of tech-deep house on his latest single.

The track felt influenced by the likes of John Summit and Salvatore Ganacci, utilizing a teasing bassline with melodic aspects such as ricocheting arps and brassy synths, all culminating towards a pre-vocal drop. Instantly after, the groovy drop seizes the stage with its swanky and minimal ensemble that moves in funky pacing and demonstrates the versatile production skills of its creator!

Riot Ten x Blvkstn x Jessica Audiffred – Dale

Prepare to be blown away by “Dale” – a sensational collaboration from Riot Ten, Blvkstn, and Jessica Audiffred. This dynamic track unleashes an explosion of energetic Dubstep, accompanied by a masterfully crafted buildup that intensifies the anticipation. What sets “Dale” apart is the skillful interplay of different elements in the drop, embracing all the quintessential dubstep goodness. As the break infuses a playful vibe (reggae influences maybe?), the overall energy remains at its peak, exuding Riot Ten’s signature power. With the exceptional vocal performances of Blvkstn adding an extra layer of brilliance, “Dale” guarantees an adrenaline-pumping musical journey you won’t forget!

AVES ft. JFDR – Gem Of The Ocean (Rony Rex Remix)

“Gem of the Ocean” is a sweet and soulful masterpiece brought to life by Finnish producer Rony Rex, who fearlessly takes a Deep House twist on the 2019 indie gem by Finnish band Aves. Enveloped in a nostalgic aura, JFDR‘s enchanting vocals add a touch of coolness to the composition, complementing the slowly-building atmosphere perfectly. The meticulous work on the percussions further elevates the track, infusing it with a chilled vibe that effortlessly resonates. One should appreciate the “gem” and its analog synths, as an example of structural quality and experimental creativity done well.