RA slapped things into gear locally, as early January saw the launch RA 'V2' and have powered on ever since. On the compilation front, Hernan Cattaneo released his subtle yet well received first mix for Renaissance - the Masters Series CD (he's just finished compiling the 2nd compilation in the series). Jeff Mills releases The Exhibitionist a CD/DVD combo release with a great insight into this eclectic Detroit techno legend.
John Digweed talks to RA about the future of his Bedrock label and the Layered Sounds release in a month that also saw Bedrock mark their 50th anniversary collection. Defected Records, Junior Jack, starts the year on a plus with his house filled Trust It CD release.
The Miami Winter Music Conference returns in 2004 with an amazing selection of parties and a lot of support from the industry. Armand Van Helden chooses the WMC to edge back into the 'dance scene' with a new taste of his forthcoming album, and "Lola's Theme" is let lose for the first by the Shapeshifters. P.Diddy joins Carl Cox at his Crobar party and the 2004 Dancestar Awards name Deep Dish as the #1 US DJ. Outside of Miami James Lavelle releases GU026 from Romania and Craig Richards provides Fabric15 helping setting up a solid year for the club and label.
Meat Katie talks about his Bedrock Breaks compilation. and the Finger Lickin' label turns 5. In more breaks, Nubreed's 'Original' artist album gets released on Mob as the trio help mark the Melbourne city as one of the best places for electronic music production in the world.
While Anthony Pappa unleashes Balance 006, helping put the Melbourne based EQ recordings compilation on the map. MTV Dance compiles their Their Top 100 Anthems of... All Time, Trance, House, Old School and Ibiza. The Berlin Love Parade gets the axe from promoters, as the multi-million dollars funds required aren’t available as costs sky rocket. Sankeys Soap shows their age and turns 10. Homelands once again kicks off the British summer festival season.
Sasha returned to the compilation market with GU delivering Involver to a mixed bag of reviews (as you would expect from the more hardcore electronic music critics) and followed it up with some rather relentless touring. The release of his Stupid Disco single pushes Junior Jacks year well and truly into orbit. Glastonbury hits the UK with a decent electronic contingency and not only sells out in record time but provides an enormous weekend of music.
The young and still fast rising star James Zabiela produces Alive for Renaissance. Dance music on the Ibiza island is more popular than ever this year and a host of wanna-be-cool celebrity types hang out at parties on the island. Erick Morillo's Subliminial residency welcomes them with open arms as they rock with P.Diddy and the Prince of Monaco.
Cementing his place as the world's leading DJ Tiesto gets booked to play to over a billion during the Parade of Athletes at the Olympic Opening Ceremony. Deep Dish continue on a huge year as 'Flashdance' not only is hammered by DJs across the board, but is also picked up by the radio stations and charted around the world. Sasha and Lee rock the Clapham Common on what was a perfect day all round for SouthWest4 festival marking the end of the UK summer period.
Bedrock launches a new CD series, the Original Series featuring a great mix from Desyn Masiello. Back in the limelight with their latest was The Prodigy with Always Outnumbered, Never Outgunned - an electro infused energetic release which has been both praised and shot down, as well as being the primary feature of BMW's 1 series TV commercial. Infusion release Six Feet Above Yesterday thanks to the mighty BMG.
My, My, My the huge single from Armand Van Helden new album received heavy TV and radio play around the world.
The legendary British radio presenter, who dedicated much of his life to many forms of music, John Peel passes away in Peru. Fabric turns 5 and puts on a huge weekend and Bedrock turns 6. Sasha converts his vinyl to digital format and plans a new moving playing purely from his laptop. Sander Kleinenberg, who moved from Excession, compiled and mixed This is Everybody Too - his follow up compilation on Renaissance. The Melbourne based Infusion trio continues their huge year by starting their Polaroid record label. DJ Magazine count the record breaking number of votes in this years Top 100 DJ Poll and DJ Tiesto for a 3rd time running takes the cake home. Ministry of Sound give the industry something to bitch about with Eric Prydz cover of 'Call On Me', along with the soft-porn style video clip, the track breaks charts worldwide.
Global Underground shifts focus slightly, in what was a reasonable quiet year for the primary label, and puts a lot of time into GU [Music] and their producers. In doing so not only has the label featured lots of great releases but gives Unkle's Reign (feat Ian Brown) single and the Never Never Land album a full international release. Sasha and John Digweed get back in the studio to re-master and re-release their classic Mix Collection to help Renaissance celebrate their 10th anniversary in style. It sees the record label finish its year in top form after a very strong and stable run of top releases throughout 2004.
Ministry of Sound celebrates their 13th year in the business and brings Derrick Carter out for a London birthday. In other benchmarks, Finger Lickin' dish out their 50th release. NYE and Xmas parties a plenty and the end to what seems to be a rather interesting and positive year for the industry on the whole.