From his new Las Vegas residency to his forthcoming single on mau5trap, nonconformity has become the mantra for Michael Woods. The British producer exclusively informs Billboard that he will be departing Hakkasan for a new residency at SLS Las Vegas' LIFE nightclub.
“The only way to compete with Hakkasan, which has all the big DJs like Tiësto and Calvin Harris, is to do something completely different,” he says. “A lot of people here in Vegas have heard the same sounds day in day out and they're craving something a little bit different. SLS is doing exactly that by going down the not so commercial EDM route.”
Woods has also extended this approach to his studio output. His new track “Brain Went Ping” eschews the instant gratification embodied by modern festival fare in opening with a slow evolution of flitting synth stabs and metallic drones. The patient introduction gives way to multifaceted build, marked by pensive plucks and stuttered claps, in advance of a smooth, driving bass drop.
Listen to the full premiere of “Brain Went Ping” exclusively on Billboard:
Woods believes the uncommon single is a natural fit for deadmau5’s label, which he credits for thinking outside the “generic EDM” box.
“I'm just trying to move the sound forward,” says Woods. “Everyone’s kind of using the same things, and I think things are starting to sound the same. I wanted to try something a little bit different, but kind of keep it in the progressive genre, because progressive is what put me on the map a few years ago when I did the deadmau5 remixes.”
Woods’s new residency is set to kick off on Dec. 19. “Brain Went Ping” will be available through mau5trap on Nov. 10.