Steve Angello discusses Swedish House Mafia and unoriginal EDM in IMS keynote interview
“It’s slowed down a bit, when dance music kicked off into the bigger stage because a lot of DJs wanted to go into the bigger stages instead of the clubs.” As one of IMS Asia-Pacific’s keynote speakers, Steve Angello sat down with Pete Tong to discuss a variety of topics. From his time before Swedish House Mafia to the recent trends in global dance music, the 40-minute interview is a heavy helping of insight into the mindset of an industry kingpin.
Interestingly touching on the financials of taking Swedish House Mafia abroad, Steve Angello commented that, “the thing with Swedish House Mafia was that it was something we never built for profit. We always came in with the sense of giving something back to the fans. We wanted to come in and make the best show possible because we already had careers as solo artists, so when we came together it was more like a playground where we could test and push the boundaries and take bigger risks, financial risks as well.” Continuing on the financial picture of Swedish House Mafia, “we had to make it work obviously, we didn’t want to lose money when you’re going on 55 to 60 shows because it adds up, but at least you wanted to do the best possible thing. We could have brought bigger production in, but we made a break even show.”
Straying away from his own background and into the plight of mainstream electronic music, Pete Tong then got the founder of Size Records to open up about the current state of up-and-coming producers. “I think that’s the problem today, you know I have Size and I’ve had it for eleven years now. This week I had over a thousand demos, but I’m not going to pick up one single song because there’s nothing there that is original. That’s scary to think about when you wake up tomorrow morning, who is going to be original?”
Undoubtedly one of the industry’s biggest names even during his post-Swedish House Mafia career, Steve Angello’s keynote interview revealed the mindset of an electronic music veteran. He continued throughout the extended segment to touch on the experience of a large festival set, the need for DJs to pay their dues in clubs, and an excess of other topics. The full interview lasts almost 40-minutes and it can be viewed in its entirety above.