Las Vegas Gets Two Nightclubs in April: Light and Hakkasan

Hakkasan-Las-Vegas

Las Vegas’ club scene continues to explode with Light at Mandalay Bay and Hakkasan announcing they will both open in April. Light, a state-of-the-art nightclub operated by Cirque du Soleil and The Light Group, will present resident Nicky Romero, Clockwork and Andy Caldwell on April 26, followed by resident Axwell with Hook N Sling on April 27. The club says it has “confirmed partnerships” with world-renowned DJs including Skrillex, Sebastian Ingrosso, Alesso, Baauer, Thomas Gold, A-Trak, Mat Zo, Otto Knows and many others.

Hakkasan, a five-level culinary/nightlife experience, will open its Las Vegas outpost on April 18 at MGM Grand Hotel & Casino. The club, which is sprawled out over 10,000 square feet on the fifth floor of a spectacular building, will also feature state-of-the-art design and technology , promising DJ talent including Tiësto, Calvin Harris, deadmau5, Steve Aoki, Bambi, Bingo Players, Bob Sinclar, Dada Life, Danny Avila, Fergie (DJ), Hardwell, Laidback Luke, Michael Woods, NERVO, Quintino, R3HAB and Tommy Trash.

The influx of nightclubs in Sin City will no doubt be a boon to DJs given that both clubs are well financed. But will both clubs’ deep pockets lead to a bidding war for DJ talent? We’ll find out soon enough.

Swedish House Mafia Lighting Ceremony at Empire State Building [Photos]

Steve and the Mafia enjoying the moment

Parting is such sweet sorrow. With only days left to go for Swedish House Mafia’s long farewell, the three members of the DJ/producer threesome were honored yesterday afternoon in New York City, where they gathered for a lighting ceremony at the world-famous Empire State Building. Their Black Tie Rave benefit held last night at Hammerstein Ballroom before a string of four sold-out New York City shows raised money and awareness for Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City and Hurricane Sandy New Jersey Relief. For this good deed someone of power felt that they should be honored by having the building illuminated in yellow and blue, the colors of the Swedish flag.

Arriving roughly 15 minutes late with their families at their side to a pack of eager photographers jostling for space behind a velvet rope, an official from the Building gave a few introductory remarks before handing over the podium to the Mafia. Axwell did the talking as Steve Angello stood to his right, smiling and enjoying the moment, while Sebastian Ingrosso on the left looked happy and perhaps a tad nervous.

The threesome then stepped to their right amid a barrage of camera flashes and flipped a switch, turning the art deco building yellow and blue. When they saw the miniature version of the Building light up, they all locked eyes and smiled. It was a graceful and genuine moment that was perfectly in line with how they’ve orchestrated their own demise.

Images by Darren Ressler

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Rolling Stone Fails to Ask Swedish House Mafia’s Steve Angello Two Tough Questions

Last month Axwell gave an interview explaining why Swedish House Mafia disbanded. Now Steve Angello is echoing his soon-to-be-former groupmate’s sentiments. Talking to Rolling Stone, Angello said the reason for the trio calling it a day is because the threesome felt they had attained its creative threshold and couldn’t go any further.

“We just decided that we reached a point where we don’t know what the next move would be,” he told RS. “We always like the challenge. And we don’t like to repeat ourselves. We just felt like it was time.”

Angello denied that tension caused the group’s seemingly abrupt cessation. “We’re like brothers,” he said. “We’re still here. It’s not like anybody has died. We’ve had beyond our dreams and we’ve come very, very far. We just felt like, ‘let’s stop touring.'”

The RS interview failed to touch on the Twitter feud Angello was involved in with DJ Sneak earlier in the year and didn’t ask about Angello’s infamous “fake DJ” set at Dance Valley in 2011where YouTube video shows Angello playing a mix CD and not DJing during his set. Perhaps that a caveat for the exclusive interview….who knows.

If you’re feeling sad for Angello, don’t be. He’s doing just fine. His Size in the Park event taking place on September 22 in New York’s Central Park, featuring sets from AN21 & Max Vangelli, Sunnery James & Ryan Marciano and Third Party, is sold-out.

As for SHM they will host a final hometown blowout in Stockholm on November 24 and play their final U.S. gig this September at the iHeartRadio Festival in Las Vegas.

Axwell Says He’s Going Underground After Swedish House Mafia Split

Axwell is the first member of Swedish House Mafia to reveal his plans for his post-SHM life since the trio announced in June that its upcoming tour would be its last. According to Scotland’s The Daily Record, the DJ/producer, who has been running Axtone Records since 2005, is planning to take a step back and focus on underground music and talent.

Said Axwell, ““The big names are not the future. There are more American R&B artists wanting to meet people like us and wanting to learn our world. They want to come to our world and that is all fine but, for me, that’s not what I’m chasing.

“I’m introducing what is new and what new producers and completely unknown singers we have. I’m interested in the new Adele, the new Gotye. Who is the next guy? That is really the future. Just meeting big name people for the sake of it is not what I’m looking for.”

Reflecting on his group’s work since forming in 2008, Axwell added: “We provided an energy that makes people go crazier than ever on the dance floor. They were always dancing but we gave the crowd an extra push that I had never seen before.”

SHM’s final shows will be a residency at Ibiza’s Ushuaia until August 29, followed by one further gig at Stockholm’s Friends Arena on November 24.

Swedish House Mafia’s Next Tour Will Be Their Last

In a move that has surprised fans and music industry types, Swedish House Mafia have posted a message on their website announcing their upcoming tour will be their last. “Today we want to share with you that the tour we are about to go on will be our last,” the black-and-white message said. “We want to thank every single one of you who came on this journey. We came, we raved, we loved.”

The brief message alluded to what will likely be their farewell DJ tour. “The final leg of this journey will be announced in August.”

Whether or not you were a fan of Mafia’s’s music, Axwell, Sebastian Ingrosso and Steve Angello achieved more success than most pop groups, headlining Madison Square Garden, Milton Keynes Bowl and Coachella and regularly selling out shows all over the world. They also created the revered Masquerade Motel party brand and linked up with Absolut Vokda for a campaign.

Though the Mafia’s members are being quiet about their decision, what is know is that the trio has changed management recently and some of the members have been taken to task for allegedly playing mix CDs and not DJing duirng their shows.

Before Winter Music Conference DJ Sneak called out Steve Angello and Swedish House Mafia in an interview, leading to testy exchanges with Angello on Twitter. In Big Shot‘s interview with DJ Sneak, he described the Mafia “a DJ fraud.” (Angello’s publicist said Angello had no comment.)

While some fans will be upset that their favorite group will no longer be touring and, presumably, not recording music (all of the members have solo careers), there’s a good chance DJ Sneak and a few other non fans will be walking around today with a big smile on their face.

The group’s last post on Twitter reads as follows: “Thank you. And goodnight.”