Before COVID-19 funneled the nightlife industry into a metaphorical wood chipper, fabled DJ and producer Carl Cox was on his typical mission of delivering heart-pumping rave music to the masses. The house music legend has been doing so since the 80s, when he helped to usher in a new era of electronic music in the states. Having witnessed the unwavering ebb and flow in the EDM industry over the years, there is perhaps no one more qualified to assess the current musical zeitgeist than Cox, who recently aired a special performance that moonlighted as an ode to 90s rave music.

Cox recently spoke to London-based outlet Evening Standard about the current nightlife landscape in the wake of COVID-19, and his outlook was markedly bleak. Socially distanced club nights are "really sad," according to Cox, who was dismayed at videos of awkward shows in the Netherlands. "It’s the weirdest thing you’ve ever seen," said Cox, 57.

"There’s no atmosphere, you can’t go get a drink," he continued. "It defies the ethos of what brings us together. It’s not the way forward. We have to find a vaccination. That also goes for football, racing events, everything. Right now if someone sneezes you run a mile. We have to get to a point where people feel more positive about being alongside each other."

However, Cox points to the imminent virtual music and arts festival Lost Horizon as a fortuitous light at the end of the tunnel. Pete Tong, Peggy Gou, and Skream will perform at the digital event, which is being organized by the team behind Glastonbury's "Shangri-La" after-hours area, along with Cox and many others. "It’s fantastic that this is happening,” Cox told the Evening Standard, also saying that he has "dipped into [his] record boxes" to play music from fellow luminaries The Chemical Brothers and Fatboy Slim as well as "all those euphoria records that get you stomping on the dancefloor, celebrating what brings us together."

You can catch Cox this weekend at Lost Horizon, which will run from July 3rd to 4th.