I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead

Steve Aoki is a world-famous EDM DJ. Mile for mile, he’s the most-traveled musician in the world (via his private jet, natch). He started a record label when he was 19 years old and turned it into a success, breaking Bloc Party among others. He parlayed that into a DJ gig, and attracted a cultural following. His energy kept driving him forward. Now he plays aoki_bulletin_voake_hiressel_1433as many shows per year as there are days, or more. He’s ambitious. He never stops. He helped transform EDM into a personality-based business. On any given night there are thousands of voices chanting his name. But it’s not enough. It’s never enough.

Steve’s dad was the guy who invented Benihana. Success runs in the family. But Steve’s dad was never impressed, and never supported him financially. Steve’s  dad is dead now, but Steve’s still trying to impress him.

This documentary forces Steve to sit still for maybe 6 minutes, total, in an attempt to be introspective for a damn minute. The film attempts tension and conflict, but there’s only so high-stakes you can make a dance music concert. Still, his family situation is sad and it’s clear that even as a man he’s still yearning for a validation that will never come. Can only come from himself, ultimately, but until he can sit down in earnest and look inward for it, he will be fated to repeat this pattern indefinitely.

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