Cow­ell sets his sights on EDM

Simon Cow­ell has just launched the World Cup of EDM – a sort of X-Fac­tor with added turnta­bles

The Irish Times - Friday - The Ticket - - TICKET STUBS - Tony Clay­ton-Lea

The Voice Of Ire­land? The X Fac­tor? Amer­ica’s Got Tal­ent? Pah! For­get all of those con­trived, fake-ass, karaoke blub­ber­fests and say hello to Ul­ti­mate DJ, the com­pe­ti­tion which aims to find the best DJ on the god­damn planet. Simon Cow­ell is in­volved and . . . hey, hey, come back, come back!

Of course, Cow­ell is in­volved. The man be­hind Go Go Power Rangers!, Rob­son & Jerome and other mu­si­cal gems knows a good thing when he sees it and reck­ons there is cash to be made from chore­ograph­ing turntable wars. If the Yanks are go­ing gaga for EDM, there’s sure to be many would-bes and wannabes who will want to un­leash their in­ner Guetta or Avicii and make fools of them­selves in the process.

Cow­ell’s co­horts in this project in­clude Ya­hoo (com­pany boss Marissa Mayer is an EDM fan, ap­par­ently), Sony Mu­sic and Steve Aoki, who will be one of the judges. A mar­ket­ing per­son gushed with ex­cite­ment that “Ul­ti­mate DJ will be very much like the World Cup of EDM - coun­try against coun­try, DJ against DJ, fan­base against fan­base”.

All in­volved will be hop­ing that Ul­ti­mate DJ brings home the ba­con, though it’s hard to see how watch­ing a bunch of lads and a few to­ken lasses spin­ning tunes is go­ing to make a great TV spec­ta­cle. They re­ally need some Ul­ti­mate DJ chal­lenges, like how does the DJ deal with drunken re­quests for Ma­roon 5 or Arc­tic Mon­keys at 3am? Now, that would be ap­point­ment TV. Jim Car­roll In Belfast to­mor­row, as part of the city’s Cathe­dral Quar­ter Arts Fes­ti­val, the Ir­ish pre­miere of mu­sic doc­u­men­tary Look­ing for Johnny takes place (Black Box, 3pm, £4, The film ex­plores the (brief) life and times of New York Dolls’ gui­tarist Johnny Thun­ders, and while it’s a goodie, it got us to think­ing what other bril­liant mu­sic doc­u­men­taries will hope­fully be com­ing our way over the next few months. Here’s our top five...

All Things Must Pass

Colin Hanks di­rects this sharply ob­served movie about the rise and in­evitable fall of Tower Records, the Amer­i­can mu­sic re­tail gi­ant that in 1999 recorded earn­ings of $1 bil­lion, and which by 2005 had en­tered bank­ruptcy pro­ceed­ings. Ouch.

The­ory of Ob­scu­rity: a film about The Res­i­dents

Avant garde US band The Res­i­dents have never been iden­ti­fied by name or face. Go fig­ure . . . Don Hardy di­rects a doc­u­men­tary about one of alt.rock’s weird­est and most be­wil­der­ing bands.

Danny Says

Amer­i­can mu­sic in­dus­try ex­ec­u­tive and band manager Danny Fields shares many rich anec­dotes about his in­volve­ment with the likes of The Doors, Ra­mones, Vel­vet Un­der­ground, and Iggy Pop. A racy film – and the sound­track is bliss.


From early hip-hop to EDM (via Madonna and Tay­lor Swift), the Roland TR-808 – a drum ma­chine, no less – is eu­lo­gised by the likes of Beastie Boys, Da­mon Al­barn and Afrika Bam­baata. Alexander Dunn di­rects.

Salad Days

Earplugs! Scott Craw­ford delves into the DIY punk scene of Wash­ing­ton DC from 1980-90. The re­sult is an ac­cess-all-ar­eas, warts’n’all look at a highly in­flu­en­tial scene. Talk­ing heads in­clude Henry Rollins, Dave Grohl, and Thurston Moore.

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