The perfectly choreographed reunion of Swedish House Mafia hit some major snags last week. First, Ingrosso was a no show at XS Las Vegas then most recently, SHM cancelled their Ultra Korea set at the very last minute. Couple that with a rumor of more cancellations, the question everyone is asking in EDM circles is what exactly is going on with Swedish House Mafia?
Swedish House Mafia signing an exclusive deal with Live Nation?
A visa issue for Ingrosso is being cited as the reason for the XS & Ultra Korea sets cancellations. But according to an article from DJ MAG Germany, there may be more to the story than meets the eye.
The article alleges that the supergroup has signed an exclusive deal with Live Nation for a stadium tour. The allegation is that Live Nation will lean on the trio to cancel any festival appearances that do not profit Live Nation directly or indirectly. The article also indicates that more festival cancellations may happen to make room for the stadium tour among other things. Take this with a grain of salt, because there are not currently any indications that any other shows are at risk.
A New Internal Conflict?
In the same DJ MAG Germany article there is a mention of some sort of a new conflict between the three members. Ingrosso fails to show up to Vegas for whatever reason, and so Angello and Axwell refuse to show for Korea as retribution. 2013 flashbacks anyone? This is slightly awkward considering they just got back together after so many years. They do however give us reassurances that SHM will not be breaking up (again). The article directly states:
“ Fans don’t have to worry about a premature end of the Swedish House Mafia. The rumours about renewed disputes between the superstars are still going on. According to well-informed sources, the fee of the Swedes is about 1.000.000 € – which is still about 280.000 € per member after deduction of additional costs. And for that money, you can certainly overcome many a dispute.”
Disagreement Over Stage Design & Branding?
The internet, of course, has been doing its own digging. The sleuths over at Reddit and the Axwell forum have a different idea about Ultra Korea. They claim the Ultra Korea cancellation came from a disagreement over the stage between SHM management & Ultra Korea organizers. As you know the reunion tour has used a very iconic stage setup, which actually was first seen at Ultra Miami in 2018. The 3 large LED walls with the riser DJ platform and the 3 circles above. You might remember that Ultra Miami turned off their own logo and other stage features to let the trio do their thing.
The rumor goes that SHM had similarly specific requirements for the Korea stage and they refused to perform when the stage did not fully comply. If this is true, it’s sure to leave a bad taste in fans’ mouths as Ultra had clearly compromised for them the three large circular lights at the top and a custom DJ booth riser. Neither of these ended up being used the entire weekend. The huge solid screen at the back was exactly like the ones at their arena shows too. This ultimately resulted in Ultra offering full refunds for day pass holders and 1-day refunds for 3-day pass holders.
The Bottom Line:
The bottom line is there is a lot of stuff being said and not a lot of confirmation for anything. There has been no word from Live Nation or the boys yet about the alleged “stadium Tour”. Same goes for their Ultra Korea set, all we have is that it was canceled due to “Unforeseen Circumstances”. As far as renewed conflict between the boys goes, well time will tell about that.
Ultimately, out of all the show cancellations and squabbles, the ones that lose are the fans. The same fans that spent $80 for a plain white shirt with a date written on it. the same fans that are spending thousands of dollars in hopes of seeing their favorite group live. The next planned SHM show is Tinderbox Festival in Denmark on June 26. There has been no concrete statement from the Swedish House Mafia team yet so keep your eyes peeled because we definitely will.