Search Menu
Home Latest News Menu

Mixmag Asia's best features of 2022

A look back at this year's stories on Bali's clubs, YMO's history & visual recaps of Asia's ripe underground scenes

  • Mixmag Asia Crew
  • 12 December 2022

Amidst all the buzzy news pieces and bountiful music releases 2022 had to offer, our features articles also got a lot of love from our readers. We at Mixmag Asia have always strived to provide more in-depth reporting of happenings around the region and that’s where the features section pops in.

Filled with interviews, photo galleries, plus both informative and personal takes on certain topics, ten particular pieces caught our readers’ attention — and we wouldn’t blame you for it. Who wouldn’t want to get the insider scoop on places to party in Bali or dive into the history and journey of Japan’s biggest electronic music group?

Catering to the many elements and interests of the electronic music scene, the list we’ve compiled based on your preferences shows just how varied our readership can be… and we’re all for it! If you think this year was a busy one on the features front, wait till you dive into next year’s topics (some of which we’ve already got lined up!).

See which of our features made you scroll for more in the list below.

48 vintage pictures that capture the early days of clubbing across Asia

One of our favourite photographers to ever grace our galleries with his stunning shots. Greg Girard is the Canadian who landed in the Far East in 1974 and has never looked back, documenting the early club culture of the region which in turn examined the social and physical transformation of Asia’s largest cities. When east met west, Girard was there to capture it all. From 1974 Hong Kong to 2016 Okinawa, these images are best soundtracked to ‘Relax’ by Frankie Goes to Hollywood, as recommended by the photographer himself.

Take a look at his collection of vintage photos from all over Asia here.

Bali is back: Your music lover's guide to every kind of clubbing Bali has to offer

The Island of Gods came roaring back to life in mid-2022 when international tourists were able to flock again to its beaches, bars and bounty of dancefloors. Seems like many of our readers were set to party in paradise, so we compiled a list of go-to places in Uluwatu, Seminyak, Berawa and Canggu to cater to their drinking and dancing needs. From picturesque venues overlooking the ocean to hidden cocktail bunkers in a strip mall, this feature became the essential list for tourists — new and old — for fun under the sun or dancing in the dark.

Check out the entire list of Bali’s top hotspots here.

The amazing history of Yellow Magic Orchestra: Unpacking Japan’s most influential electronic music band

An in-depth look into the journey of the band from Japan that were as big as The Beatles. From coming together in the 1970s and their first official release under the name ‘Yellow Magic Orchestra’ to appearing on America’s ‘Soul Train’ TV show as “the crazy Japanese guys”, the group encountered several ups and downs with fans fearing their permanent disbandment. They ended up reuniting a few more times under various names with the same quality of captivating music that everyone knew and loved. Finally in 2009, Yellow Magic Orchestra was brought in full circle back to their roots to the delight of many.

Read about their incredible journey here.

44 moments captured at equation's 'cave rave' in the north of Vietnam

We’re not really surprised this entry is on the list based on the words ‘cave rave’ alone. The primal calling of dancing in caves seems to appeal to many and for those who got FOMO for not joining Equation’s epic event at Muo Luong Cave, we quenched their thirst for a pictorial preview of what went down. 44 pictures from three photographers were compiled, perfectly capturing the atmospheres of night and day at The Garden and The Cave stages. It's yoga sessions, elated dancers, hypnotising visuals and stunning stalactites galore.

Peek the pictures and read the short review on the event here.

Behind the lens: a glimpse of Chengdu’s unabashed underground scene

Many this year took a gander at the gritty, intimate and sometimes chaotic images of Chengdu’s club culture as captured by nightlife photographer Tao Yun. In addition to being encapsulated by a visual trip via her photos, she also shares her favourite moment caught on camera, plus a handy step-by-step guide to a full-on, fun night out on the streets of Chengdu. “I’m easily drawn to love and intimacy, at parties,” she mentions, which certainly shows in her photography.

Dive into the pics and read the full interview here.

Snapshots of Jakarta’s first post-pandemic rave inside a dreamlike dome

La Cúpula (“the dome” in Spanish) was lit up with mind-altering intergalactic visuals and beaming lasers into the early hours of Sunday morning, June 4, 2022. Local collective SALA took over a 15-metre-tall rounded structure with a 30-metre diameter that gathered crowds in the hundreds. The 360° immersive visual experience was, of course, accompanied by sets from renowned local DJs that brought back that nostalgic feeling of pre-pandemic raving whilst anticipating post-pandemic excitement in Jakarta’s nightlife circuit.

Read our first-hand review and immerse yourself in the snapshots here.

In pictures: Outer Bounce at Haw Par Villa ushers in the next generation of Singaporean ravers

“It really felt like hell (in a good kind of way).” We knew this one would make you look. Outer Bounce was one of Singapore’s most anticipated events and for good reason. Held at the hellish Haw Par Villa, it created an ethereal setting especially for Singapore’s younger crowd of ravers — fresh out of quarantine and diving deep into the party scene. “Our creative approach to the event was very symbiotic with the space at night and audiences really enjoyed the experience,” say the Outer Bounce crew and we’ve got the pictures to prove it.

For more exclusive photos and statements from the organisers, click here.

Peeking the mind of dot.jaime: "being more human is key to being a great artist"

Jaime San Juan aka dot.jaime has broken out of his bedroom producer shell to grace us with his artistic aptitude. Never one to limit himself, the Filipino artist opens up on his collaborations he sees as being responsible for where his craft is now, to going as far as locking himself in with friends to solely focus on an album’s direction, which says was as “hella liberating”.

Get a deeper understanding of how dot.jaime’s mind works here.

Yum cha chats: Carta's 5 easy steps to get started with meditation

Yeah, we sort of figured a lot of our readers would like (or need) a feature like this. One of China’s more popular and busiest touring DJs, Carta, underlines how mindfulness is just as important as any other element in raving as he gives five simple ways to keep your mind at ease. Might want to bookmark this one with all the year-end festivals coming up. In the words of Carta himself; “Mentality is everything”.

Read your go-to guide for a balanced mind here.

Mothering manila’s subculture: the enduring living legacy of Leah Castañeda & Anna Sobrepeña-Ong

The Philippines was definitely a party destination in the 90s with its pop-up parties in unconventional spaces (The National Library, anyone?). Emerging from the flourishing underground scene were Leah Castañeda & Anna Sobrepeña-Ong who to this day continue to nurture the local pool of talents, driven to empower even more. Castañeda mentions how she and Sobrepeña-Ong “Are like yin and yang. Sometimes, the way we work can be polarizing but that doesn’t hinder us from learning from each other.”

Read about their story from the ground up to predicting the shape of things to come in the Philippines here.

Honourable mention
Festivals in Asia to attend before 2022 ends

We couldn’t let this one get away. As the year nears its end, the festival circuit comes alive around the region and many of our readers clicked and scrolled away at our selection of events. Be prepared, though; we might just be adding a few more as they make their announcements for New Year’s Eve celebrations.

See our list of go-to events in Asia before 2022 ends here.

Next Page