Axwell & Ingrosso's 10 Most Priceless Music Moments
In June 2012, when Swedish House Mafia announced plans to split up after its aptly named "One Last Tour," EDM fans around the globe felt a sinking feeling in their guts more powerful than any bass drop. With its irresistible progressive house sound, the trio of Steve Angello, Sebastian Ingrosso and Sven Axel Christofer Hedfors (aka Axwell), had been instrumental in bringing electronic music into the mainstream. Before calling it quits, the group scored numerous worldwide hits and played to massive crowds from Mumbai to Miami.
But every ending brings a new beginning, and in May 2014, Axwell and Ingrosso formally announced a new group -- one that aims to accomplish something Swedish House Mafia never managed to do: release a proper full-length album. While Axwell & Ingrosso’s debut full-length has yet to arrive, the pair has released a series of singles -- including “Something New,” “Can’t Hold Us Down,” “On My Way,” and “Sun Is Shining,” which topped the charts in the duo’s home country.
“Sun Is Shining” is sure to bring smiles to New York’s Nikon at Jones Beach Theater on Aug. 22, as Axwell & Ingrosso join Nicki Minaj, Justin Bieber, The Weeknd and fellow EDM heavyweight Skrillex at Billboard’s inaugural Hot 100 Festival. In anticipation of the euphoric dance party that's now less than two weeks away, we’re looking back at this electronic supergroup’s most priceless moments.
June 4, 2013: Not yet officially a duo, Axwell and Ingrosso “Roar” onto the scene. Billed as “Axwell and Sebastian Ingrosso,” the duo gave the Monsters University soundtrack a much-needed jolt in the form of “Roar,” a disco thumper that marks the only song on the disc not performed by Randy Newman. The tune became even more of a monster when London production outfit Yogi gave it the dubstep treatment with his remix.
May 26, 2014: Axwell and Ingrosso give away single "We Come, We Rave, We Love.” Performed by Swedish House Mafia on its farewell tour, the anthemic “We Come, We Rave, We Love” foretold a second act for Axwell and Ingrosso when it dropped in the spring of ’14, just in time for summer. The pair also provided an a cappella version for aspiring remixers.
May 29, 2014: Axwell & Ingrosso make partnership official in new and old-school ways. May 29 was a big day for Axwell & Ingrosso. As influential BBC radio 1 host Zane Lowe broke the news about the duo prepping an album and planning a tour, the fellas combined their Facebook pages and hyped the joint venture to their 2.3 million followers. They also tweeted about the forthcoming album -- technically their first, since Swedish House Mafia’s two album-length releases were compilations.
June 8, 2014: Axwell & Ingrosso make stunning live debut. Days before making their live debut at New York City's Governors Ball, Axwell & Ingrosso treated the island of Manhattan like their own personal playground, plastering buildings and subway stops with their /\ logo and snippets of song lyrics. Shame on anyone who left the festival early on June 8. Taking the stage at just after 9:30 p.m., Axwell & Ingrosso premiered seven songs and lit up the sky with fireworks visible from the nearby RFK Bridge. No wonder Billboard named the performance one of the festival’s 15 hottest moments.
Nov. 5, 2014: Zane Lowe premieres “Can’t Hold Us Down,” dubs it the “Hottest Record In the World.” In May 2014, when Zane Lowe first dished on Axwell & Ingrosso’s plans to drop an LP, he promised the music would be “incredible.” Six months later, he proved it by premiering “Can’t Hold Us Down,” a festival-ready progressive-house number clocking in at six-and-a-half thrilling minutes.
Nov. 27, 2014: Axwell & Ingrosso premiere “Something New” via star-studded commercial. “I see the dawn of a new beginning,” sings frequent collaborator Salem Al Fakir on this mission statement of a single, which premiered on Thanksgiving Eve 2014 in a Beats by Dre commercial starring such celebs as Nicki Minaj, Big Sean, Kendall and Kylie Jenner, and the A&I boys themselves. The exuberant prog-house jam landed on iTunes the next day and went on to top the Dance Club Songs chart as their most successful single to date.
March 12, 2015: Thrilling "On My Way" mini-movie hits YouTube. To mark the release of “On My Way,” a big tune deserving of big-screen visuals, Axwell & Ingrosso unveiled an action-packed six-minute clip in which our heroes play underground ultimate fighters with a plan to screw local gamblers out of buckets of cash. When their getaway car doesn’t start, it sets the stage for the next episode…
March 13, 2015: The action continues as “Can’t Hold Us Down” video debuts at Billboard. Although “Can’t Hold Us Down” had been out for some time, Axwell & Ingrosso released the official video as a sequel to “On My Way.” Also directed by Christian Larson, this high-octane video begins with a badass car explosion, and just when it seems like things are going to get really violent, one of the goons pursuing our heroes busts out some sweet dance moves. To be continued…
April 11, 2015: Axwell & Ingrosso throw desert dance party at Coachella. A sizable crowd flocked to the outdoor stage on Saturday night of Coachella 2015’s opening weekend to witness A&I’s headlining set. As always, the pair kept things theatrical -- as did vocalists Salem al Fakir and Vincent Pontare, who rocked crazy animal costumes -- but it was the music that really made a mark. Amid tunes from their hotly tipped LP, the duo dropped remixes of everything from Valentino Khan’s “Deep Down Low” to Metallica’s “Enter Sandman” to please their audience.
June 12: 2015: A&I make summer a little brighter with “Sun Is Shining.” Boasting an uplifting chorus (“The sun is shining and so are you”) and arriving with a heart-warming video in which people of all walks of life share handwritten messages of inspiration, this sun-soaked single ruled Scandinavia, going top 10 in Norway, Finland, and Sweden and reaching No. 1 in the latter.
Buy tickets for Billboard's Hot 100 Fest, featuring Axwell & Ingrosso and more, at ticketmaster.com.