“You guys are lucky,” says DJ Sebastian Ingrosso, one third of electronic music super group Swedish House Mafia, referring to the trio’s Dubai performance this weekend.
“You know, the first one is always special — and especially because it’s the first of the last.”
After announcing earlier this year that the hitmaking trio, which also includes DJ Axwell and DJ Steve Angello, were calling it quits after four years and embarking on a final tour, it’s rather poignant that Ingrosso is on a train somewhere in Sweden as he speaks.
“I can’t wait to get off, go home and pack my bags for Dubai,” he adds, just before he is cut off for the second time during our conversation.
“I just want you all to know we’re so excited to come and that’s it’s going to be amazing,” he manages to add, before the line goes silent again.
One Last Tour, which the three DJs have described as “their most extensive and extravagant show to date”, will officially kick off at the Dubai World Trade Centre on Friday. It will then travel to venues in Asia, Africa, Europe and the US before a final show in Miami in March next year.
While the announcement sent shock waves among electronic music fans around the world, Ingrosso says it was really a choice between becoming monotonous or worse, irrelevant, and being remembered for the hits they made as a team.
“We’ve taken this as far as it could possibly go. It’s been an amazing ride and it’s gone beyond what we ever dreamed of… selling out shows and what not… but we couldn’t take it beyond this. I mean, what else can we do? Sell out more shows?”
Formed in 2008, the three established DJs quickly conquered dance music, especially in Europe, with their cutting-edge music. Hit collaborations include One (Your Name) featuring Pharrell, Miami 2 Ibiza featuring Tinie Tempah and the 2011 global chartbuster Save The World.
The formula worked beautifully, says Ingrosso. “We did something different because we were three as one. It was kind of different from what every one else was doing, and people liked what we did in our shows, the production… the big bangs, all that stuff.”
So the farewell tour is not really a break-up, he insists.
“Please don’t make it sound like a divorce,” he says, laughing. “It’s an exciting time for us. We’re excited about the tour — which is also a way for us to say ‘thank you’ for the amazing journey — and we’re excited about what’s coming after the tour.
“We all want to focus on our solo stuff. We have amazing materials waiting for us and we can’t wait.”
Although he would have liked to collaborate with more artists (“I love Florence Welch and Paul McCartney”) as Swedish House Mafia, Ingrosso says his solo projects are equally exciting.
“I can’t say much now but there’s going to be a lot of cool stuff,” he says, adding that it will be straight to the studio for him after the five-month global tour.
“For now, I am just looking forward to the weather in Dubai, the shopping and the restaurants. It’s going to be a goodparty.”
*Swedish House Mafia perform at the Dubai World Trade Centre on Friday. Tickets priced at Dh350 are available at virginmegastore.me. Doors open 9pm.