Tue 4 Jul 2023 • Freddie Hill
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The fourth part of our artist series spotlighting some of the incredible acts making the journey to Tisno this year
Disco is a revolution, and many electronic artists around the world are capturing its essence and legacy in new, exciting ways. Through four-on-the-floor beats and stylistic instrumentation, those that honour where disco came from, while propelling it to the future, are contributing to disco’s thrilling renaissance.
With the festival now 30 days away, get to know the disco dons of Defected Croatia.
With an illustrious career spanning decades, Mousse T. continues to dominate dancefloors with his infectious blend of house, disco, and soul. Approaching the new millennium, Mousse T.’s chart-topping collaboration with house vocalist Inaya Day (‘Horny ‘98’), and his productions for the likes of Tom Jones and other legends, cemented the German house pioneer as one of Europe’s top commercial acts who picked up an Ivor-Novello Award and Grammy nomination along the way. Ever since, the house and disco legend has become a firm favourite of top selectors and industry mainstays worldwide.
Today, the Peppermint JAM label owner’s ability to blend classic musicality with an electronic touch consistently draws in crowds from around the world. His prolific output as a musician and his years of sophisticated DJ experience has resulted in three studio albums, as well as a longstanding relationship with Glitterbox - holding major residencies with us throughout the years. From artistic endeavours at Montreux Jazz Festival to showstopping sets at world-class festivals and clubs, Mousse T.’s incredible portfolio of performances proves his status as a highly original disco don.
One of the most popular acts to establish themselves in the world of house and disco, Folamour and his iconic bucket hat have filled major dancefloors globally since his debut EP, ‘Deeply Rooted Vibes’, in 2014. With appearances at the legendary London venue, Printworks, Glastonbury festival and all across Ibiza - as well as multiple Defected & Glitterbox appearances - Folamour has quickly evolved into one of the premiere acts to watch.
Establishing his own label five years ago, FHUO Records (For Heaven Use Only) continues to bring the sound of French electronic, with its long history of French touch and disco sensibilities, to the rest of the world. With an iconic Boiler Room set, culminating in a viral drop of ‘Gimme Gimme Gimme’ by ABBA making his name known to the masses, Folamour assures party-goers that every set of his has the same energy. His latest studio album, Manifesto, released on 26 May features the joyous, disco party ‘Poundland Anthem’ that is sure to soundtrack your Croatia experience this summer.
A Defected & Glitterbox stalwart, The Shapeshifters has spent nearly 20 years at the top of the house game. Since their defining anthem of love, acceptance, and equality ‘Lola’s Theme’ catapulted him to the top of the charts, Simon Marlin has toured the globe with an array of disco heat, becoming a firm favourite of house heads everywhere.
His latest full studio release on Glitterbox, ‘Let Loose’, saw the UK household name work with luminaries Billy Porter, Joss Stone, Teni Tinks and CHIC’s Kimberly Davis; the fourteen-track release pledged rhythmic allegiance to the golden era records, shining a light on disco’s past, present and future. With performances lined up for Defected Malta, multiple Glitterbox Ibiza appearances, and a slew of other world-class stages booked for 2023, The Shapeshifters is one of the most qualified disco experts at this year’s Defected Croatia.
A connoisseur of funk, soul, and rare grooves, this vinyl aficionado honed her craft in NYC, curating immersive sets that pay homage to the golden era of music. After co-founding the groundbreaking, community centred Soul in the Horn parties in the big city, Natasha Diggs has played on line-ups and shared the stage with the likes of Honey Dijon, Mark Ronson, Grandmaster Flash, Jayda G and Erykah Badu.
No stranger to Defected Croatia, the ‘45 Queen’ (named so for her love for 45 vinyl) took our 2022 audience on a journey through time with a set brimming with infectious energy and undeniable passion. The Glitterbox favourite and huge-hat-wearer has previously played alongside Jamie 3:26, Louie Vega and Kerri Chandler at several of our incredible parties around the world; this combined with her previous experience owning the Croatia stage makes Natasha Diggs an unmissable watch for 2023.
These disco dons will have you hooked from the first beat with their raw and gritty soundscapes, effortlessly intwined with pounding basslines, hypnotic melodies, and futuristic synths. The Italian duo, comprised of Take It Easy label residents Davide Le Merlus and Simone Giudici, held a Defected Broadcasting House residency in 2022 - 15 years after they started performing together in 2007.
Notable releases from the well-established pair include ‘Watchin' Out’, a disco-house dancefloor filler named one of the top tunes of the year from Mixmag magazine following its 2018 release, as well as their remixes of top names in the industry Mike Dunn, Roland Clark and Robert Owens. Incredible disco music and our Glitterbox label are almost synonymous at this point, and Dirty Channels made their Glitterbox release debut this February following several standout DJ sets playing for the party – now they’re bringing their signature sound to the Adriatic coast.
Known for his high energy and impeccable taste in house and disco, this dynamic DJ and established label boss is sure to bring his seamless mixes to Croatia, keeping the crowd grooving until the early morning. From humble beginnings in the industry, his disco-infused ‘3AM Jazz Club’ cut found its way into legend Moodymann’s record collection in 2011, after which Shake honed his skills as a producer and then as a DJ throughout the rest of the decade.
On his way to becoming the renowned performer and tastemaker he is today, Shake established himself as a key fixture at hedonist paradise NYC Downlow at Glastonbury festival, set up his own label SHAKE - launching music from fellow disco aficionados Dirty Channels and Jamie 3:26 - and earned the praise of key figures like Gilles Petersons (and of course, Moodymann) along the way. His impressive, genre-spanning sets are sure to be bolstered by his latest release, ‘Verde’, which channels the luscious landscapes of Devon through field - adding another sonic string to his already impressive bow.
With so much impeccable talent heading to the Adriatic coast in just 30 days, now is the time to book your tickets and flights.
Click to read the previous entries in our Artist Spotlight Series:
Defected Croatia will run from Thursday 3rd – Tuesday 8th August 2023. Tickets are available here.