8 acts you can’t miss at HARD Summer 2016
8 acts not to miss at HARD Summer 2016
HARD’s flagship event, HARD Summer, has grown from an annual Los Angeles staple into one of the country’s leading festivals in its near-decade run. Renowned for its powerhouse bookings (and, of late, its nomadic address), HARD Summer has provided a platform for both veteran performers and burgeoning young artists alike.
HARD Summer’s ninth edition takes place this weekend at its most eastern locale yet in Southern California, the Auto Club Speedway, where it will host two days of eclectic electronic and hip-hop acts.
Ahead of the weekend, we’ve selected eight acts you can’t miss.
8. Will Clarke
UK house producer Will Clarke has cultivated a dedicated audience through his prolific releases on Dirtybird and his monthly Barber Shop radio show. His unique sound is unsurprisingly bass-heavy and influenced by his hometown of Bristol and an Ibiza residency early in his career.
Expect crisp tech house productions peppered with whimsical vocal and 90’s samples during his Saturday set. Catch Will Clarke (and fellow Dirtybird artists Ardalan, Justin Jay, Justin Martin and Claude VonStroke) at the Pink Stage from 2-3.
Vancouver-based artist Haywyre, also known as Martin Vogt, has built a fanbase around his genre-blending productions, but it’s his live performances which set him in a different league altogether. Vogt spent much of his childhood in Austria where he trained in piano performance, and his background shines through with distinct classical and jazz elements.
Haywyre is known for his melodic improvisations; each live performance is guaranteed to be a unique experience. Haywyre will perform Sunday at the HARDer Stage from 2:50 to 3:50.
6. Felix Da Housecat
Chicago legend Felix Da Housecat is a product of the legendary house scene of his hometown in the ’80s. Over the subsequent three decades, he’s collaborated with artists across genres, and reinvented his own sound with every new wave in dance music’s development.
His performances are a sort of auditory compendium of the genre’s history — he is both an ambassador of the past and a force to be reckoned with in the present. Felix Da Housecat will perform at the Pink Stage from 8:30 to 9:45 on Saturday.
5. Green Velvet
House music icon Green Velvet has produced some of the most iconic dance music tracks of the past two decades. Just over a week ago, the Chicago-born producer released the long-awaited remix pack of his ubiquitous 1995 anthem “Flash.” The reworks from artists including Eats Everything, Oliver Dollar and Latnum feel as fresh as ever — a testament to his music’s staying power across time.
Green Velvet will take over the decks at the Pink Stage Sunday from 8:30 to 9:45.
4. Anderson .Paak & The Free Nationals
Dr. Dre-approved multi-instrumentalist Anderson .Paak and his dynamic band the Free Nationals are arguably the most exciting non-electronic act on HARD Summer’s lineup. As anyone who caught his Coachella set or his segment on Jimmy Fallon can attest, Paak’s live performance — in which he deftly transitions from rapping to singing, oftentimes while simultaneously drumming — is a sight to behold.
Paak is among the hottest commodities in R&B/hip-hop crossover at the moment, with his most recent album Malibu featuring collaborations with Schoolboy Q, The Game, Rapsody and Talib Kweli. Catch Anderson .Paak and his band Saturday at the HARDer Stage from 5:35 to 6:35.
Photo via: Austin 360
French tastemaker and esteemed Bromance label boss Brodinski may be the perfect embodiment of HARD Summer’s lineup. Equal parts techno and hip-hop, the producer’s recent output effortlessly straddles the intersection between the genres, as seen in his most recent collaborations producing for rap artists like Yung Booke and the latest edition of his label’s Homieland compilation series.
Brodinski will play Saturday at the Pink Stage from 7:15 to 8:30.
Mau5trap’s resident first lady REZZ is slated for one of the biggest performances of her career. Over the past two years, the Canadian artist has honed her darkly unique brand of techno, joining artists like Justin Martin and HARD founder’s alter-ego Destructo, as well as traveling across North America on her own Rezzurection Tour this summer.
Her sets are a combination of sinister techno, metal elements, and unexpected nods to her diverse artist inspirations including Gesaffelstein, Trent Reznor, Amon Tobin, and Oliver. Catch REZZ Saturday from 3:05 to 4:05 on the HARDer stage.
1. Pretty Lights
Derek Smith needs no introduction. The Colorado-based producer has amassed a cult following over the past decade, equally renowned for his breathtaking visuals as he is for his funky, sample-laden productions.
Pretty Lights returns to California on the cusp of his new ‘Episodic Festival’ concept tour. His recent output has shown a mellower side with his last release “Only Yesterday,” so it’ll be interesting to see which direction he goes with a headlining outdoor set in a setting like HARD. Pretty Lights closes out the HARDer stage Saturday 9:45 to 11.