For dance music fans, Axwell needs no introduction. But even those who aren’t ardent EDM listeners will probably know of him as one third of the now defunct super-group Swedish House Mafia. Although he’s one of the world’s most famous DJs, away from the limelight the list of artists he’s worked with is varied, having produced tracks for the likes of Flo Rida and written for more surprising names like Cyndi Lauper. He’s one of the music industry’s go-to guys for official remixes, and has lent his skills to popular songs such as Usher’s “Burn” and Dirty South’s “Sweet Disposition”.
These days, you'll usually see him paired up with fellow ex-SHM member Sebastian Ingrosso, but for this trip to Dubai he's going it alone. Given his diverse credentials, you can expect the unexpected when he takes to the decks at Provocateur on November 26…
Are you excited to come to Dubai again? Dubai is a very original city. There really isn’t another place that compares. Every time you visit it seems to have grown a little bit more. I always enjoy getting back there. This time around it’s a very short and sweet trip. But hoping to be back soon again!
You’re playing a solo set at Provocateur. Do you prefer doing solo sets? The main difference with my solo work is that there’s no big plan. When Seb (Ingrosso) and I work together we have a common goal and we are keeping our live shows in mind. It has to reflect both our personalities. Nowadays my solo work is more of a vent or an outlet for music that feels more personal to me.
How has your sound evolved over the years? I think my sound has just evolved towards what I have found interesting over the years. It’s always been important that what I do is fun for me and it doesn’t become a senseless machine. Back in the days everything was very club focussed, but now there’s the opportunity to work with songs and really open the door to more people.
How do you take the criticism that comes with producing music electronically? It’s easy to take for granted how people who aren’t totally familiar with dance music see it. Advancement of technology in music always comes with its critics and dance music relies on these advancements so much. Sometimes it’s frustrating to hear misconceptions, but at the same time it’s our job to show people how much work goes into it. We need to lead by example rather than complain about it.
Other than your own music. Is there a song that you’re obsessed with at the moment? I love Miike Snow’s new single ‘Heart Is Full.’ It’s so great to have them back!
If you could choose any artist in the world to collaborate with, who would it be? There are too many good possible answers here to only name one.
When: November 26
Where: Provocateur, Dubai, www.provocateurdubai.com