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Is This the Most EDM Thing Anyone Has Ever Said?

Read in amazement as an entire genre of music is summed up in 15 words.
GQ.com

This article was originally published on THUMP UK. EDM never really made it here in the UK. It tried, it really did try, but as a nation we managed to resist its neon and Raz-Ber-Rita sodden charms. For whatever reason, Steve Aoki's cake chucking never wowed crowds in Middlesbrough in the same way it did for the bros and broettes of Milwaukee. We still don't have a fucking clue who Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike are, and it seems increasingly unlikely that we ever will. Maybe it was Tiësto crashing into David Guetta's yacht that put us off. Perhaps it was this indescribably awful video. Whatever it was, here in the UK, EDM's more about Equipment Deadlined for Maintenance than Electronic Dance Music.

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Until now.

Just earlier today we had our minds blown by a question posed by Reddit user—I refuse to grant them the dignity of calling them 'a redditor' as is their want—themadh. What he or she wanted to know was both simply and deeply, almost disturbingly complex and unnerving. What we're dealing with here is a man well versed in stomach bacteria, Indian vape shopping, and making non-ringing iPhones ring again, turning his beady eye to the murky world of of EDM's big money corporate sponsorship. What themadh wanted to know was thus:

Let that sink in for a moment. When you're confronted by fearless questioning like that it's difficult to know to how to process it. Me? I was left drenched in sweat, with a brow so furrowed that my face actually started to cave in until a colleague snapped me out of my disoriented catatonic state. I recovered and tried to come up with an answer to themadh's brain-buster. I recognised the words I'd seen on my screen, and individually they all made sense to me. EDM, I got that. I've drunk 7Up before. I once dredged four cans of energy drink for the sake of an article. I also knew that EDM was big business, and big business means big investment from big companies. But I'd never thought anything of it. Until now. Now it was all I could think about.

Lost and seeking reassurance, I decided to see how his fellow forum users had responded to the most pressing question my eyes had rested on in a long while.

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HeatSeekingGhostOSex was straight in with a scientific explanation that checked out: "Don't mix Molly and caffeine? That's my guess because that shit is bad for your heart." That's just solid science, really, isn't it? Pingers basically feel like banging three treble espressos one after another—a feat I once saw pulled off by none other than Jonathan Meades—so the thought of glugging on the energized suds of a can of Bonerfuel or HighNRGee is a prospect so terrifying you'd probably take permanent teetotality over it. PM_ME_YOUR_YAK didn't agree however, noting that, "Idk I always thought a little bit of caffeine made the roll more psychedelicy (for lack of a better word, trippy perhaps?)". Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps.

DirtyLSD, on the other hand, thought that, "rolling with 7up/Sprite bubbling away in your mouth feels pretty cool," which it probably does, but sadly couldn't quite crack the case of why 7Up—a brand who famously don't have an energy drink in their extensive portfolio of carbonated beverages—are so heavily involved in the EDM scene.

Still no closer to a solution, I found myself praying that the last person to comment, Korpselo, would provide me with the epistemological satisfaction I so craved. Alas, it wasn't to be. "If any brands should be sponsoring EDM," Korpselo started, semi-promisingly, "it should be Monster Energy & Sprite sponsoring Skrillex." I sighed deeply and went for a walk.

There in Subway, sat alone with a 6", it all sort of strangely started to make sense. Themadh's question, on the face of it, is utterly bizarre. You can't help but wonder about the kind of person who'd actually ask anyone "Why does 7Up Heavily sponsor EDM without an Energy Drink in its portfolio?" and what they actually want from an answer. It doesn't matter, you feel like saying. It doesn't matter at all. You can sponsor an entire subculture without needing an energy drink under your belt. That's what you think at first.

Then you realise that, hold on, the question is actually so strange that it becomes an uncannily accurate example of why exactly EDM never took hold here. What we're dealing with here is a human being seeming to show genuine concern about 7Up's lack of energy drink and how it could damage their viability for brand synthesis within the EDM scene. Themadh's an advertisers dream: not only does he enjoy and talk about the product, he's actively interested in the brand campaign too.

And that's why it wilted and died and no one really gives a fuck about Avicii over here: do you really want to align yourself with the kind of people who think of club culture and the importance of corporate synergy in the same breath? Shower thought: no.

Josh is answering other tough questions over on Twitter