This weekend (29 April - 1 May) the first ever edition of Paradise Blue touches down in Cancún for a three-day celebration of bass music, held across luxury resorts, pool parties, and on the festival's main stage situated on the edge of the famous white sands.
Created by Canadian producer Excision, who will play three sets across the weekend, the all-inclusive destination experience will be soundtracked by an array of scene-defining DJs and producers from across North America and beyond featuring some of contemporary bass music's heaviest hitters; the likes of Virtual Riot, Svdden Death, Zomboy, and many more.
Ahead of this high-octane, bass-fuelled weekend of hedonistic escapism, we picked out just a handful of tracks from acts on the lineup that we're looking forward to hearing at the festival.
ATLiens - 'Shelter'
Taking their name from their hometown of Atlanta, Georgia – and presumably OutKast's iconic second album – masked duo ATLiens were brought to attention of the bass music scene a few years back when Skrillex included their track 'Chief' in his Boiler Room set.
While this earlier work was heavily trap-influenced, more recent output has delved more into the darkness, utilising apocalyptic and extraterrestrial themes to add an air of menace to production that hits hard in a surprisingly stripped-back fashion: an interesting approach in a genre where maximalism is so often the route taken.
'Chimera' is a prime example of this: an atmospheric and cinematic build leading to a drop that rather than bombast brings muted synths, rumbling sub-bass, punchy kicks, and crisp, sparse snares that deserve to be heard on the biggest and best soundsystem.
ATLiens – Beach Stage, 8:45 PM, Saturday (Day 2)
ZÍA - 'Illya The Spy'
Less well-known than some of the names on the packed Paradise Blue lineup, it's perhaps fitting that Philadelphia DJ and producer ZÍA's most recent single is entitled 'Breakthrough'. But it's previous track 'Illya The Spy' which caught our attention.
It bears plenty of the high-intensity hallmarks of modern dubstep, but there are elements that seem to pay homage and take inspiration from the early South London pioneers of the genre – with the horror movie soundtrack feel echoing 'Tortured Soul' and 'Filth' by Skream, and the some of the unmistakable, aggressive mid-range synths which have more than an air of Coki about them.
ZÍA – Nexus Stage, 3AM, Sunday (Day 3)
Au5 - 'Alchemy'
It's not at all surprising to learn that the first teenage forays Au5 took into production saw him making trance music, given the euphoric and melodic sounds, and the ethereal aesthetics and visual identity associated with his work.
Spanning dubstep, glitch hop, drumstep and ambient electronica in his productions – to name just a few – tracks like 'Alchemy' evoke other-worldly atmospheres and transportive soundscapes from deep into the cosmos.
Au5 – Nexus Stage, 2AM, Sunday (Day 3)
Champagne Drip & Lucii - 'Me and You'
This track from LA producer Champagne Drip, in collaboration with Lucii, feels like dubstep specifically designed for festivals; capturing in its uplifting feel an undeniable sense of that lost-in-the-moment, eyes-closed, hands-in-the-air euphoria that is almost impossible to emulate anywhere else.
Champagne Drip – Pool Stage, 5:35PM, Friday (Day 1)
MUST DIE! x Akeos x Skream – 'LOL OK'
Almost exactly a year ago, worlds collided when dubstep pioneer Skream – now more frequently found playing and producing house, techno and disco – joined forces with renowned American producer MUST DIE! and comparative newcomer Akeos in a move that surprised dubstep fans on both sides of the Atlantic, delighting many and raising more than a few eyebrows.
The result: a generation-spanning collaboration on which the fingerprints of each producer are clearly visible, and a track which in many ways charts the course of the genre's evolution over the past two decades.
MUST DIE! – Beach Stage, 6:45PM, Saturday (Day 2)