by: Ross Goldenberg
May 26, 2023
Welcome to the beginning of “Chapter 2: Mafia.” Do we know what Sebastian Ingrosso exactly meant by that? No, not yet. But one thing is clear: it’s officially time for a new era of Swedish House Mafia. On the first anniversary of Paradise Again—unsurprisingly one of Dancing Astronaut‘s Top Albums of 2022—Axwell, Sebastian Ingrosso, and Steve Angello captioned their debut album’s commemoration by saying “We been through Paradise Again and now can see the light…” That assumedly pointed towards the moment in late March when Axwell let the Bayfront Park crowd know that Swedish House Mafia’s first time at Ultra in a half-decade would be turning towards the “more emotional side of things.” And “See The Light” was born at the set’s 52-minute mark, a track that those either standing before them in Miami or watching from home had immediately pinpointed as something fresh from three of our favorite Swedes.
It wouldn’t be until two months later—which is virtually nothing in terms of typical dance music release timelines—that the light at the end of the ID tunnel was nearing. Just a week after dropping the tour curtain on a mini-run through Latin America this fall, Swedish House Mafia were officially ready for a bittersweet goodbye to an unforgettable year-and-a-half run for Paradise Again. That happened through a radio channel that continuously broadcast a high-quality audio recording of a Paradise Again set—from a combination of 2022 dates—that Ingrosso confirmed will eventually live on streaming platforms sometime in the future. And they put it in writing that same day that their first solo output since April 15 was locked in for exactly a week later.
“It’s all love tonight, Miami… this is special… this is family.” If it hadn’t already been obvious the moment “See The Light” entered at Ultra, that Steve Angello quote padded yet another iconic Axwell speech that had come just moments before it. Co-produced by PARISI and co-arranged by Dancing Astronaut‘s reigning Artist of the Year Fred again..—a name that many had predicted had some level of involvement from the get go—”See The Light” isn’t just some straightforward preview of whatever will come next from three of dance music’s all-time greats. The track to officially brand the “Mafia” chapter feels like a true embodiment of what Swedish House Mafia means. And while the word “masterpiece” surely gets tossed around a little too often in this day and age, “See The Light” felt like one from the very first seconds it hit the Bayfront Park airwaves. Throughout all five-plus minutes created “on a cold winter night in Sweden,” Axwell, Sebastian Ingrosso, and Steve Angello richly move the needle forward of the emotion-soaked, progressive-fueled soul—sampling Fridayy’s “Momma” and sprinkling a hint of garage influences—that has eternally secured the longevity of Swedish House Mafia through what they’ve attached to their name since July of 2021. And it’s about to be a three-day celebration for the ages, with Steve Angello’s SIZE XX celebration kicking things off in their hometown of Stockholm on release day—with an appearance from some yet-to-be disclosed “friends”—followed by an intimate release party in London the following night, and lastly an overdue reunion with Creamfields 24 hours later. It’s now time to “See The Light” and expect the unexpected—as Sebastian Ingrosso put it—from Swedish House Mafia as we enter the year of “Mafia.”
THE NEW SHM ID AT ULTRA ????????????
— Dancing Astronaut (@dancingastro) March 27, 2023
Featured image: Alive Coverage