Amazing Things that Happened for Electronic Music in YYC 2014.

Looking back on 2014 we have a lot to be proud of in Calgary. We made some huge progress in electronic music and multidisciplinary arts. Not only are we shifting how the outside world views our underground cultures, we are also making stronger bonds, creating meaningful experiences for party goers and challenging what partying looks like in Calgary. If you're just joining us, here's some of our favourite highlights of 2014:

Photo by Michael Benz

Photo by Michael Benz


The creation of an evening dedicated solely to electronic music producers that promotes collaboration, education and is bringing the makers and shakers together every month at Habitat Living Sound. A wonderfully dedicated team of new and old faces in the Calgary scene are working hard to make sure that music producers are getting the info they need to succeed in the biz and are being challenged to bring forth their best work. For more information on upcoming Studio Social events click here



Bassbus is no stranger to creating unique parties and events. From stage design at festivals like Basscoast to street side raves, this crew of creatives is breaking down the walls & limitations to how we party in Calgary one step at a time. Circle the Wagons was especially notable because the concept was to bring together the Market Collective, YYC food trucks, local breweries, live  music, live performances and a special selected community which would ultimately benefit from a donation at the end of the show. All of this magically transformed one community into a magical carnival for a day! Click here to find out more about the next Cirle the Wagons!


Calgary's premier music production school Beatdrop presented it's second installation of Beatcamp in October. The day hosted a perfect combination of industry panel discussions, hands on learning opportunities and new gear demos. Truly enough information to make your head explode and get stoked! Since the inception of Beatdrop in Calgary, the number of electronic music producers has increased drastically, and in our eyes could be credited for the rise in quality and output of Calgary's scene. The school hosts classes for all levels of music production from 101 to mastering as well as music business, synthesis, DJING & turntablism. Beatcamp acts as a gateway for many to enter into our realm and see the possibilites for themselves in the biz. If you're thinking about producing or djing, Beatdrop truly has you covered. Check them out here & let's hope they do another Beatcamp in 2015!


Although this event is in it's sixth year of operation, 2014 seemed more spectacular for some reason. Perhaps it was because this event was truly one of the first ground breaking collaborative events in it's day. The HIFI Club is always working hard to make sure our community spans beyond the walls of the nightclub. In Calgary we can always rely on the HIFI and it's lovely curators to supply us with a healthy does of good djs, good live acts, good bands, great festival support and even a HIFI Yoga Club! They truly care about the bigger picture and we love them for it. They're closed for some big renovations until January 17th, but when they come back online, they will boast a brand new PK Sound system, new washrooms and probably more cool stuff. Follow them here.

Photo by Michael Benz

Photo by Michael Benz


In 1999 did you ever imagine a rave in downtown Calgary with 2000 people dancing from noon until midnight in the midst of thousands of other Canada Day celebrations? Well, it happened thanks to Bassbus. Canada Day was nothing short of a miracle for electronic music in Calgary. Finely selected Djs supplied the soundtrack for the day including Sergio Levels, Rusty Meeks, Betty & Veronica, Vanilla Disco and many more. A family event with a full fledged dance floor and food truck market. We watched the fireworks to house music blaring through the streets for maybe the first time ever with our families.  Thank you Bassbus! WWW.BASSBUS.CA



Culture Club is the meeting of artistic minds. Arts, music and invention is their motto. An evening dedicated simply to bringing people of all kinds together under one roof to chat, make ideas, make plans, show each other your creations and ultimately to connect. Their first event in November was tremendously successful and we really hope they continue with this initiative in 2015. Follow Theatre Junction's website for amazing theatre and hopefully (fingers crossed) another Culture Club in the near future.


What is an arts culture without a voice? And what are we really saying if we are being represented by a media who isn't connected passionately to what we really do? The Freq Magazine re-brand resets the clock and shows the rest of the world that we have hard working journalists, designers, web developers, bloggers and photographers that are invested in our culture on the ground level. We aren't settling for less and we aren't selling out is what they said and we can hear it and see it in their new magazine. Check out their brand spankin' new website here.


The second annual Deep/Tech Festival saw several massive tech house and techno headliners gracing tiny stages across Calgary. Guests like Paolo Rocco, Dennis Ferrer, Nathan Barato, Tiefschwarz, Uner and Jay London played for Calgary's classically enthusiastic house music crowds. I/O didn't take as large of risks as their first festival, but truly sought out world class talent to bring to Calgary's smallest stages and rooms. The concept of an exclusively deep and tech house festival would have been unheard of in Calgary just a few short years ago. But this festival among other small initiatives raise interest and awareness for the music that we love so much. We hope more festivals such as this pop up in Calgary in the years to come.

Lastly, Substation would like to thank CJSW for being a constant pillar of support for the greater music community at large in Calgary, the photographers, the writers, the bloggers, the talent bookers, the dancers, the bar tenders, the door girls and boys, the security staff, the brains, the web developers, the promoters and the music lovers for making what we do possible! Really, none of the above would be possible without a massive collaborative effort to make it all work. We've had a really good first year as the new Substation and we are stoked for this new year.

Our Best of 2014 Compilation is out today exclusively on Beatport.

What were your favourite parts about 2014? Leave some comments and feedback, we'd love to hear from you.

Big love & all the best in 2015!

The Substation Crew

Posted on January 7, 2015 and filed under Events.