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Axwell - Axel Hedfors - does not mince his words when it comes to summing up what has been an obscenely successful year for him: "I have been travelling the globe enjoying life to the fullest!"
And who can blame the charismatic and sought-after Swede? With the Swedish House Mafia (consisting of himself and fellow Swede DJs Steve Angello and Sebastian Ingrosso) taking off everywhere and anywhere and a number of his own tracks released separately throughout 2010, the past 12 months have been "a great rollercoaster ride", as Hedfors himself puts it.
Perhaps even more than his SHM counterparts, Hedfors enjoyed considerable solo success throughout the year, particularly through 'Nothing But Love', an energetic club ballad featuring vocals from Errol Reid and the first single from an upcoming Axwell album.

However, despite this it is still SHM's track 'One' that sums up 2010 for the producer. Enjoying simultaneous success in mainstream arenas (thanks to an edit featuring Pharrell guesting on vocals) and on the club circuit (via the original instrumental mix), the track propelled SHM into the big-time, even further and faster than their 2009 hit 'Leave The World Behind'. Full of huge hooks, epic synth breakdowns and infectious rhythms, the irresistible melody of 'One' could be found blasting out from countless clubs, radios, TV stations and numerous other sources throughout the summer of 2010. An undeniable accolade, but how did it feel to be the centre of attention in the dance sphere (largely) off the back of one tune and with such immediate effect?

"Incredible," says Axwell. "It's been scary to see how big that tune has grown, and it's been scary to play it and watch the club turn into mayhem. Scary in a good way!"

Such parallel success leads Hedfors to the inevitable dilemma of splitting his time and life between solo productions and SHM work. He offers an impressively calm, zen-like rumination on what is no doubt a thoroughly maddening situation: "It's 50/50 - fish one day, meat one day. You gotta have both!"
One way of combining the two areas - or at least giving airplay to both bodies of work - has been through the Masquerade Motel/Mondays at Pacha, Ibiza, club nights that the trio continue to host. Unsurprisingly, the nights have been going off pretty well throughout 2010, to put it mildly. "This summer it's been nothing but amazing, every Monday," says Hedfors. "So many party people each and every Monday night, creating the exact same electric vibe on every Monday!"
The past year has also given SHM some fine material for their next big release. It's not quite an album, as Hedfors explains, but an intriguing project nonetheless - a DVD documentary, which the trio are also soundtracking. "It's more of a compilation of what we have done over the last two years, as well as some exclusive mash-ups that we always play but which have never been available for release before."

Looking further ahead, Hedfors confirms the unstoppable yet welcome rise of both SHM and a separate Axwell solo career, stating simply that there will be "More of everything - more tracks as SHM and more solo stuff."
In the more immediate future, SHM's penchant for working with big-draw names looks set to continue during 2011, as Hedfors gladly confirms: "Our next single, 'Miami 2 Ibiza', features Tinie Tempah on the mic."
Thankfully, it seems like no degree of success, star collaborations, mayhem or partying can displace this down-to-earth DJ's grounded outlook and sly sense of humour, as proven when discussing the dreaded 'superstar DJ collective' tag that SHM have been lumbered with over the past year. Is this label something he's comfortable with? "Yeah, sounds like a good thing, and something I'd love to be a part of!"
Keep on keeping on, Axwell.