Skrillex Drops Two Albums in 48 Hours, Takes Over NYC
After his almost decade-long album hiatus, frenzied fans gave Skrillex a warm welcome back at Madison Square Garden last Saturday — largely in celebration of his first studio album(s) release in almost a decade.
While MSG’s notoriety reflects a rich entertainment record, Skrillex solidified his place in the history books with an unforgettable show alongside Fred Again.. & Four Tet announced only days before it was set to take place (it sold out in a reported three minutes).
Prior to the monumental MSG affair, the cohesive trio—informally dubbed ‘Pangbourne House Mafia’—added to the chaos by dropping day of ticket links to their first two pop-up performances at neighboring venues, The Good Room (Feb.14) and Le Poisson Rouge (Feb. 16).
The impromptu show run commenced with a historical event in Time Square live-streamed by The Lot Radio, with a school bus serving as the trio’s stage. This fueled a renegade-like atmosphere complimentary to the MSG celebration that would follow, with surprises still on the horizon.
This was all, of course, in celebration of Friday’s expected release of Quest for Fire, his first full studio effort since 2014’s, Recess.
Quest for Fire features multi-faceted layers of melodies, accents, and vibrations. Overall, the album is characterized by a wide variety of underground-inspired sound design mixed with Skrillex’s signature production style. Notable collaborations with the likes of Flowdan, Noisia, Bibi Bourelly, Josh Pan, Four Tet, PEEKABOO, and more set the tone before the album’s closing song, “Still Here (with the ones I came with),” which features Porter Robinson.
At the MSG show on Saturday, Skrillex halted the music mid-gig to announce to the crowd that his second album, Don’t Get Too Close, had also just dropped. “[Don’t Get Too Close is] not necessarily as much rave music as something you guys can listen to on the way home.”
The progression of sound design on Don’t Get Too Close is wildly distinct compared to Quest for Fire and circa 2010 Skrillex. The intricate blend of airy tropical beats and subdued features by modern artists like Kid Cudi, Chief Keef and Justin Beiber delivers a fresh rebirth of a raucous dubstep powerhouse turned almost ethereal in contrast. This is nothing to be fooled by, however, as Skrillex didn’t forget the OG enthusiasts who crave a more bass-forward and party-centric sound.
It’s no secret that Skrillex is well-known for influencing eras of sound within the dance community. It’s also not unlikely that these adjacent projects could once again inspire artists far and wide to reach for something more structured production-wise.
Let us not forget the importance that movement through generations of diverse sounds has played throughout EDM history. Only time will tell whether Skrillex will once again breed a new expectation. One thing is certain, though: Skrillex is set to have a record-breaking Summer.
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