Steve Aoki just released the first disc of his two-part album Neon Future on September 30th. Neon Future I includes collaborations from some very talented and some unexpected artists like Fall Out Boy, will.i.am, Waka Flocka Flame, and more.
On his new album and collabs, Steve tells iHeartRadio, "To me it's not even dance music, it's like a rhapsody, we really go into a different world. That's the great thing about working with other artists is that you don't know where you're going to go, and it's exciting to go in this uncharted territory together, and explore something brand new. And then you get there and you're like, 'Wow! We got here and there's no planning!' You can't plan something like that. It's like when you fall in love, you don't understand why you got there, but you're like, "F***, I'm so happy to be here."
He also tells us about writing songs versus just making a song with a crazy drop. "That's the thing with a lot of the songs on Neon Future, I'm writing songs instead of writing, 'Okay, I've got to write a build, let's do the crazy drop!'"
Steve also talks about the theme of Neon Future. He tells iHeartRadio, "It's exciting to think of technology. I mean we're already doing that, we get excited when we find ways to cure cancer. No one wants to die like that, and see the people we love die. The idea of creativity and music and art, all expanding and getting more exciting and more beautiful, that's also part of this Neon Future. "
After conquering countless festivals this summer Steve owned the stage at one of THE most buzzed about festivals - the iHeartRadio Music Festival at the MGM Grand Arena in Las Vegas last month. He pretty much Aokified the iHeartRadio stage!
If there's one thing Steve Aoki fans know, it's that his shows are always something to remember. Between the music, "his white raver-rafting," cake-throwing, and endless champagne showers, Steve's performances are always full of crazy moments. The producer/DJ recently stopped by iHeartRadio HQ in New York City where he let us in on his top five craziest show moments! Check them out below:
1. LANCE ARMSTRONG RAVER-RAFTING AT LIV
"At LIV in Miami, I pulled the raft out and Lance Armstrong and I jumped in the raft, and we crowd-rafted. We white-raver-rafted across, all the way to the back. I know when things are going to go wrong, because I just know how things are; In the back of the room it was just tables, so people at the tables, they just watch, they don't participate, so I knew that this thing was going to fall at some point, and we're going to capsize. Lance Armstrong's just like, 'This is so crazy!' I was just like, "Oh s**t, this is going to go down bad." All of a sudden, the boat just went [down] like that, and he fell face-first on the pavement, and I landed on top of him on his ribs! I think he ended up breaking his ribs. So, I get this text later, two weeks later, and Lance is like, 'Man, I had the most insane night of my life with you. I've won all these races risking my life on my bike, and never got hurt the way I did, but still it was the most fun of my life.' It's like, 'Oh man, that sucks that you hurt yourself!' But he had a good time.
2. AFROKI CAKE FIGHT/RAFTING AT EDC
"I remember at EDC 2012, [on] the Dim Mak stage, Afroki played. It was me and Afrojack. And that day was crazy, I was with Iggy Azalea, we were promoting 'Beat Down.' So cakes were only a year old, but there was a million people with signs. I wound up caking Afrojack, and he ended up smearing cake all over me. That was the first time he ever jumped in the raft, and he's a big guy. When the crowd's that dense, they can hold that big guy up, so he had an insane time. I ended up crowd rafting too, and luckily he was DJing, because I just went deep for 10 minutes.
[On people trying to crawl into the raft] "That's what usually happens. That's the problem, people get greedy, and they're like, 'I want to get in the raft,' and all of a sudden the raft just sinks. Sometimes you just have to, you know [have] a 'Walking Dead' moment, just push people, push all the zombies."
3. TOMORROWLAND 2013's EPIC SELFIE
"Tomorrowland 2013 was probably one of the most epic moments I've ever visualized. At every show I do this crowd shot, it's almost like an intermission break in my set. I stop the music and I get people to jump up and do a photo, the biggest selfie ever. So we did the biggest group selfie of 100,000 people or however many people were there. I'm like, 'Everyone put up your flags!' Everyone put their flags up and ... just the view. I mean the picture's out there. It's hundreds of flags, and they're all just going up, and it's a very chilling moment. Because you see this harmony of all these countries coming together, and it's such a beautiful experience. That was main stage, and you see all these countries all here, and they're all having the time of their lives, and they're all experiencing it together. I mean, that was just more like, 'I can't believe I'm a part of this,' and I was closing main stage on the last day, so that was one of the, that's one of the most stressful sets of the whole festival. Just being able to have that moment of like, 'We're here, let's soak it in, because this is one of the most amazing experiences of our lives.'"
Group photo Tomorrowland https://t.co/6Hk5pu0v5t— Steve Aoki (@steveaoki) July 29, 2013
4. ON TOP OF THE WORLD WITH SKRILLEX AT UMF KOREA
"Playing with Skrillex in Korea. We did Ultra Music Festival in Korea, and there's 25,000 people in this Olympic stadium, that was amazing. I love Skirllex, I love playing with him, he's such a great dude. For me it was more, just that whole night was amazing. The energy, the feeling. Being in a completely foreign place and seeing over 20,000 people. You don't expect that, something like that. You don't expect everyone to be so excited from front to back. When you move your arms, the whole place from all the way to the back is in unison with you, and they're all with you. It's a crazy feeling. I played and [then] he played. When he played I put him on my shoulders. It was his last song, he was playing 'Scary Monsters,' this remix, and I put him on my shoulders, and he's holding the flag, and we're running around and goofing around, all sweaty and gross, but so much fun."
5. MATCHING TATTOOS WITH WAKA FLOCKA
"On the 'Aokify America' Tour, I toured with Waka Flocka, and Borgore and then on select days with Pharrell. That whole tour actually, was one of my favorite experiences in my life, because it really was my favorite tour I did. Everyone got along with each other, and when you're with a group of people for that long of a time, you're going to know if you're going to love these people for the rest of your life or not. You're going to know if you don't want to ever see these people again. The first time you hang out with someone, it's like a honeymoon period. You're on your best behavior, but by the end of the second month, if you're still like that? That means everyone's vibing and having good chemistry."
"In St. Louis, it's the middle of the tour, and we're like 'You know what? Let's get tattoos.' So me and Waka Flocka, we got matching tattoos. It's not like some angel, or anything like that. We were trying to figure out what it was. Some of his crew got Dim Mak tattoos, a lot of people got Dim Mak tattoos. I found this, one of my favorite artists out there is Jean Michel-Basquiat, and so I was looking through at the tattoo spot, I was looking through all of his paintings, and I found this one weird drawing of this Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle looking dude, and I was like 'That is f*****g dope,' and I showed Waka, and he's like 'Oh that's dope!' I'm like, 'Let's get that.' I got mine here, and he got his on his arm. It's a good tour story, because me and Waka we were definitely bonding on that tour, and that's when we wrote 'Rage The Night Away,' and his show is crazy. His show is turnt up!"
BONUS: RAVER-RAFTING WITH KENDRICK LAMAR ON TOUR
"I did a tour with Kendrick Lamar, we did three weeks across the US, and you would never expect Kendrick Lamar to get into a raft, but me and him did and we surfed over a sea of people. That was an epic moment, and just because he's the s**t, you know? He's so cool."
Check out Steve's single featuring Kid Ink "Delirious" below!
Photos: Katherine Tyler for iHeartRadio