In March 2014, Steve Angello closed his set at Ultra Music Festival with "Children of the Wild," a soaring yet bittersweet song that he had introduced the previous year. After playing an updated version in the same slot at the 2015 fest, the former Swedish House Mafia DJ is finally giving the track an official release.
"It's gone through so many different vibes," says Angello. "Usually, you overwork it until you realize you need to cut down the fat and go back to basics. What we came back to in the end was just the basics – the bass guitar, the guitar, simple drums and strings.
"A lot of people tend to overproduce a lot of songs," he continues. "I wanted to keep the lead very iconic and very lonely. I wanted it to be that one lead vocal and then this kids' choir. It feels British, somehow. If you look at British rock or indie, back in the day, it was always that lead vocal."
The song's release coincides with International Children's Day, and Angello is donating the money it makes on Spotify to the Save the Children Fund. He sees the finished product as a bridge between his previous work and his forthcoming solo album.
That LP, which he expects to come out at the end of the summer, is "a little darker" and "a little melancholy." "No song is an attempt to create a pop record," he says. "This is just straight-up vibes and unorthodox arrangements."
Accordingly to Angello, the album goes well beyond EDM and has been on his mind for a long time: "I felt like at some point in my career I had to get into that, the stuff that I am really passionate about, without watching my steps too carefully. I want to do that 'real artist' album that in 10 years I can look back on and say, 'That was a great moment in my life.'"