Release Date: Jan 17, 2012
Record label: Ultra Records
Genre(s): Electronic, House, Club/Dance, Progressive House
DJ'ing celebrity parties, promoting clubs, crafting clubs tracks that sold well, running a successful label, and landing the big-name remixes (how's Michael Jackson for big?) unfairly put Steve Aoki on the hipster "hated-on" list, but this first "proper" release is an excellent argument that his talent deserves respect. Approach it in the mood for a high-gloss good time and Wonderland does exactly what it does on the tin, taking the listener on a dancefloor adventure that begins with Weezer member Rivers Cuomo making moping sound triumphant during the electro-mover "Earthquakey People. " This pumped-up journey continues as NERVO joins LMFAO for the cheeky fun "Livin' My Love," a track that would be considered an incredibly hip choice if it were labeled "Italo disco.
As the founder of electro-house label Dim Mak Records, Steve Aoki has influenced the careers of MSTRKRFT, Bloc Party, The Bloody Beetroots, and up-and-comers Dada Life. Since launching the label in ’96, Aoki has become a musical force in his own regard, building some of the most energetic and bang-y sets across clubs and music festivals worldwide. But with his time also spent running numerous clothing lines and a Korean BBQ joint, Aoki hadn’t found the time to write, produce, and distribute his own full-length–that is, until the recent release of guest-heavy Wonderland.
STEVE AOKI plays Kool Haus March 2. See listing. Rating: NN Remember when Steve Aoki seemed vaguely cool? The L.A. DJ/producer/label owner was a key figure in bringing the rock and dance worlds together in the hipster heydays of the early 00s, but in recent years he's focused on relentless touring more than signing new talents or cranking out innovative remixes.