Golden Features has turned out to be an apt name for the artist born Tom Stell. It’s a nod to the gold mask he wears while performing, but the Australian electronic producer has had a literally golden run since bursting onto the scene in 2014, with two platinum and six gold ARIA certifications for his tracks, 275+ million global streams for his music, an acclaimed and beloved debut album in 2018’s SECT (#1 ARIA Dance Albums Chart, #1 iTunes, Triple J’s Feature Album) an accompanying tour that included two sold out Sydney Opera House shows, a closing set at Falls Festival, slots at major US festivals including Ultra Music Festival and Coachella, and forming the BRONSON project and self-titled album with stadium-conquering US electronic duo ODESZA.
It’s little wonder that after all of this, Stell felt creatively spent and needed time to recoup. He wouldn’t be the first electronic musician to find inspiration in Berlin, but it’s not known as the clubbing mecca of the world for nothing. There, he lost himself in the city’s renowned techno bunkers and hedonistic clubs, dancing with strangers, stripped of phones (no photos/videos, just sweaty bodies surrendering to the music) and returning to the apartment in the early hours to hunt for the tracks he’d heard the night before. Four nights a week spent raving only came to an end when COVID closed the clubs down. But Stell returned to Australia revitalised and most importantly, inspired. He’d reconnected with what he loved about music in the first place and couldn’t wait to pour this inspiration into new music of his own.