Wed 21 Jun 2023 Freddie Hill

Defected Croatia Artist Spotlight Series - Part 3: Ones To Watch

‘Up-and-coming’… ‘rising stars’… whatever you want to categorise them as, the talent of these young artists is undeniable. Despite having the start of their careers impacted by a two-year live-music shutdown while facing stiff competition within the industry, these are the creatives who have already made their presence felt against the odds.

Read on for our ‘Ones To Watch’ at this years festival. These are artists who have their finger on the pulse of where house is heading…

Chloé Caillet

BBC Radio 1 Dance Future Star and one of DJ Mag's artists to watch for 2023, Parisian DJ and producer Chloé Caillet made waves when she remixed one of our iconic house tracks, the and true record box essential ‘Coma Cat’ by Tensnake. This was followed by her latest EP on CircoLoco records, led by the floor-filler single ‘Know Now and serving as an ‘Intro’ to her busy French touch, club heavy and disco-esque sound.

Despite her busy release schedule that will see new music each month, summer 2023 will see the Ibiza-based producer and multi-instrumentalist dominate the European festival circuit, with sets lined up in the UK, France, Spain, Germany, Italy, Poland, Belgium and of course Croatia. Her passion for live DJing was inspired by the New York, Paris, and Bristol rave scenes she grew up attending, and her sleek, built-for-the-floor productions draw upon the rich musical culture these disparate scenes represent.


Los Angeles-based HoneyLuv is an essential figure in the next generation of BIPOC music, known for her groovin’ live sets that capture audiences regardless of genre expectations. Hailing from Cleveland, a city steeped in house music history, the burgeoning selector has performed at notable US events, including Detroit’s Movement Festival and Miami Music Week.

Outside of her extensive touring schedule, HoneyLuv has branched out into radio, hosting her ‘House Of Honey’ radio show and helping to relaunch Tuskegee Music label with her latest release; ‘Sex & The City’, made in collaboration with Visionquest co-founder Seth Troxler, samples Chicago house mainstay Paul Johnson. The sleek, club-ready cut has received a remix from another house icon MK. With these huge names in her corner, the future looks bright for HoneyLuv.


From representing The Remedy Project during their debut party at ADE last year, to releasing ‘Phases’ on tastemaker Melvo Baptiste’s imprint, Dutch duo Makèz have certainly made an impression on key players in the house scene, including Seth Troxler, Dan Swindle and Chez Damier. Known for incorporating soul, jazz, and disco influences into their eclectic house music, the young rising stars have gifted the world a variety of genre-hopping house bangers in just a couple of years.

Primarily releasing through Swindle's Heist Recordings, their 13-track album 'City Of All' showed a level of electronic knowledge and maturity that was well beyond their years. Their live sets demonstrate a similar approach, with their crate-digging pasts serving them well as they fuse their self-made tracks with inventive edits and choice cuts spanning generations.

LP Giobbi

With her Defected debut ‘Giodisco’ landing in a couple of weeks, LP Giobbi is soon to be a familiar name to our fans everywhere. The DJ, producer and classically trained musician teased the single throughout her live sets over the past year, having performed at Tomorrowland, Defected Miami and legendary festival Coachella.

Her highly personal debut album ‘Light Places’, released to critical acclaim last month, saw the artist transition from rising star to certified festival favourite. Her modern, uplifting style sprawled against a powerful club-ready backdrop served sonic euphoria over the span of 13 accomplished tracks. Now with her sights set on Defected Croatia, the party has just begun for LP Giobbi.

Kitty Amor

The first UK DJ from the African electronic music scene to play at legendary London venue Printworks, Kitty Amor has been leading the UK Afro-house scene ever since. Her strong musical partnership with Sef Kombo, as well as her appearances on line-ups alongside huge names Maceo Plex, DJEFF, Jimi Jules and Black Coffee have cemented Kitty Amor as one of the top names in the house music industry.

After hosting a series of livestreams throughout the pandemic, 2021 saw her grace the cover of DJ Mag. Now in 2023 her first major release, ‘I Saw An Angel On The Roof And Wept’, has already seen play around the world from fabric London to HÏ Ibiza. Penned by Somadina and reworked into a haunting Afro-house cut, the track continues her exciting legacy as a future trailblazer.

Paige Tomlinson & Rio Tashan

Defected’s Unsung Heroes competition debuted in 2022, giving rise to a number of up-and-coming stars of the international dance scene. Supported by Pioneer DJ, the competition provides the ultimate global platform for DJs who have been the backbone of their local music scene. Since winning, Paige Tomlinson and Rio Tashan have proven their worth on major UK stages, including Printworks, fabric, Tomorrowland and Creamfields, and further afield in Ibiza, Croatia and more.

Born and raised in Liverpool, cutting her teeth on the city’s underground club scene, Paige’s rich musical knowledge and technical prowess continues to impress. With original music scheduled for 2023, including her funky debut ‘Get Funky, Get Down’ out now, Defected Croatia is sure to be the start of more greatness for the 90s inspired DJ.

Rio Tashan has grow from strength to strength thanks to his bouncy, dancefloor-ready and intuitive style. Born into a musical family with roots in the UK Drum & Bass scene, Rio’s influences extend far and wide, with no singular genre or inspiration locking him down. The rising star now also hosts a weekly showcase on Defected Broadcasting House, ‘It’s A Feeling’, celebrating his favourite house tracks and the intuitive nature of live performance.

By now you have already become familiar with many of the incredible acts heading to the Adriatic coast this year, but keep an eye out for the next part of this series as we spotlight Defected Croatia’s Disco Dons.

Click to read the previous entries in our Artist Spotlight Series. Part 1: Trailblazers and Part 2: Genre Blenders 

Defected Croatia will run from Thursday 3rd – Tuesday 8th August 2023. Tickets are available here

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