Kickstarting the final installment of the 444 trilogy, acclaimed electronic producer i_o has joined forces with Canadian alt-pop vocalist Lights to create the dark progressive house track ‘Annihilation,’ released via mau5trap. AM 444 is the concluding EP of a three part series titled 444, a project inspired by a New York City nightclub called 444 with an atmosphere similar to those that inspired i_o to become an artist.
“It wasn’t this room that I found myself in years ago, first hearing electronic beats spilling out to a crowd full of angsty teenagers, but it felt just the same,” he shared. “It was a room just like this one that inspired me to be an artist. Project 444 is a return to that for me. A journey into what makes i_o.”
Each chapter of the project captures the different areas of dance music that inspire i_o to create his own. While ACID 444 reflects the beginnings of warehouse techno and NRG 444 the more aggressive, uptempo dance music suited for a peak hour main room techno set, AM 444 is an ode to the dawning hours of the early morning when night becomes day– a more progressive EP featuring “longer tracks, more emotion [and] more melody—something that would be more akin to the early deadmau5 releases in the late 2000s,” he says.
With a much different feel than the first two installments of the project, ‘Annihilation’ is a softer, more melodic track that seamlessly infuses Lights’ ethereal vocals in a duet with i_o’s own over radiating synths and reverberating, progressive beats. The single also went #1 on Apple Music’s Electronic shortly after being released this past Friday.
i_o and Lights met while performing on Deadmau5’s cubev3 tour that spanned from September 2019 to early February 2020. While working on AM 444 during quarantine, their original vision transformed into a world of their own called EDEN. Each artist represents a voice of a different standpoint– one treating EDEN as a cyber-utopia that acts as a metaphor for escapism, and the other “an alternate consciousness in a dire world.” Through conflicting feelings of hope and despair, the powerhouse duo captures the feelings of uncertainty that most of us are feeling in the current state of the world.
AM 444 is set to release on May 29th, 2020 on Deadmau5‘s record label Mau5trap. The two artists also just released a music video teaser for what seems to be the EP’s next single, ‘RUN,’ which you can watch here.