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May 2018
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A Trip In Trance 2 [Trance]
I received this two-disc compilation a few weeks ago, and it is a fairly decent followup to its not too distant predecessor. Musically, this compilation has some really great stuff. The disappointing thing is that there are some mastering issues, amazingly. Track 5 on the first disc sounds like it has some digital distortion going on (around 4:00 you can hear the crunch), but as I don’t hear the whole sound distort, it is likely that is happened during the final mixdown of that recording. Doesn’t this make you wonder why the Darren Tate would have used this track in his mix though? Or perhaps I’ve mistaken an instrument for distortion, or it was purposely used as an effect. There another defect on the Track 8 that causes a prounounced click at 0:37. Honestly, these sort of things just shouldn’t be on a profressionaly produced compact disc! I wonder who in the line of production screwed up here, someone wasn’t paying attention? Darren Tate does a decent overall job with the first disc. I seriously loved every track, but it really takes off on track 7, his own his Prayer For a God. Sensation’s Anthem 2003, which is an impressive trance version of Mozart’s Reqium, Darren Tate vs Jono Grant’s Nocturnal Creatures (my fave), and Mike Koglin vs 10th Planet’s Pushed (trance in minor key, awesome) all blend together very well, and Mono’s Rise is another notable. Ayla & Fila’s Eye of Horus and Scott Bond vs Solarstone’s 3rd Earth are both great tracks, though I’ve heard them too many times by now. It was really cool to hear the great Waiting by Kota with vocals laid on top now. All I Need Is Time by Aluna was also some great vocal trance, and I love the bouncy square rhythm pad. The second disc is again mixed by DJ Esquille, and a lot of the [[grahame:music/atripintrance first compilation]]’s artists are back. Trancepulse Inc’s Lost In the Underwold, Enlounge’s Freefall, Innvervibes’s Approaching Dawn, DJ Blackbird’s I Dream, and Deceitful Mind by Moonlight are my favourite contributions to this disc, but nothing on here is bad trance.
Nyana [Trance]
I got Tiesto’s [[amazon:B0000931QO Nyana]] double disc compilation a few weeks ago, and have been listening to parts of it almost daily. I’ve actually nearly worn myself sick of it, but that won’t bias my writeup. Tiesto is not my favourite DJ, as his tastes vary more than I’d like. Of course, the stuff he choses to put in his sets is always very tight, well produced stuff. He just wanders too far into _house_ sometimes for my liking — a matter of taste, not skill. The first disc’s intro track didn’t really do much, but track 2 definitely picks up the slack. There are some great tunes on here that are a now mainstays, such as Darren Tate vs. Jono Grant – Let The Light Shine. Conjure One’s track is a great choice (overplayed for me though), and Love Angel – The Gift and Solar Factor – Urban Shakedown is some excellent floor-thumping trance. Disc two has the lovely Andain – Beautiful Things and Motorcyle’s As The Rush Comes. Holden & Thompson’s kickass Nothing still blows me away, and P.O.S. – Remember is completely killer. All in all, a decent offering. Not all of these tracks belong in the Top DJ’s record box in my opinion, nor on this album. But the highs are high enough that they blow the curve for the crap tracks.
76 [Trance]
Armin van Buuren is my favourite DJ, so I was very excited to get my hands on [[amazon:B0000C3I4C 76]], his first album of original works. It is a fairly solid offerring, although it doesn’t deliver the number of heart-wrenching emotions and euhporic highs that most of his compliation/mix albums have. For the most part, this is not a dance-floor-ready trance CD. It is more down-tempo and dreamy than I would prefer for dancing. Armin seems to be holding back from producing tracks for the sake of floor-thumping. Those types of tracks do exist on this album, but they’re interwoven with more ambient / mood-setting works. There are several version of Armin’s singles on here that we’ve all heard to death ie Yet Another Day and Communication. There is a remake of Armin’s debut single Blue Fear, now with more synths ™. Stay is apparently a remake of a song by the Dutch rock band Krezip. Sunburn is some good trance, although play it concurrently with Perpetuous Dreamer’s (another Armin project) Dust.wav and the similarities will be striking. Seriously, beat match them and they’ll play on top of each other pretty well. There are also some nice assists from the trance gods Airwave and System F, Victoria Horn, and the venerable Justine Suissa. Definitely be sure to check out Precious, Stay, Wait For You, Sunburn, and Slipstream. All in all, a solid album from my favourite trance DJ/Producer. I hope he will continue to evolve, and bring the trance listening community along for the ride. I can only imagine where he’ll take us.
Exposure [Trance]
Just heard an advertisment for the Exposure Festival on my favourite internet radio station, Digitally Imported. On September 5th, 2003, they’ll be running a 15 hour, 6 stream audio extravaganza. There are going to be TONS of amazing DJs spinning, like Armin van Buuren (my favourite), G&M Project, Scott Bond, Matt Hardwick (both Gatecrasher residents), John 00 Fleming, Airbase, Airwave, Darren Tate (aka Jurgen Vries and others), Dumonde, and Blank & Jones. And that isn’t even a third of the lineup. I’m am very excited, I’ll have to fire up a few stream rippers — I wouldn’t want to miss this event!
A Trip In Trance [Trance]
I arrived home from North Carolina to find A Trip In Trance waiting in my mailbox. I had to order this from Hi-Bias Records in Canada. I bought it when I heard it playing on Digitally Imported, my favourite internet radio station. It is a two disc compilation, with Hiver & Hammer mixing the first, and DJ Esquille on the second. The tracks that caught my attention when I heard it on DI, were U.S. (Unidentified Sound) by DJ Peke, and Emotion by Trancepulse Inc, which I wasn’t aware were separate tracks until I received the CDs. Unfortunately, those are two of the best tracks in the collection. Often buying a compilation based on only hearing a few tracks works — it didn’t really in this case. Oh well. Two notables on the first disc are Nothing (Hiver & Hammer Remix) by Holden & Thompson, and 5 Million Miles (H&H Differentgear Mix) by Hiver & Hammer Featuring Javah. Nothing is not my usual sort of track, it starts out as a sort of hard dub, but morphs into trance. 5 Million miles is some great vocal trance. There are other good tracks, but many of them are well known (to me at any rate). At least there is truth in advertising, every track is basically trance at its core. Some are vocal, some are hard, some progressive, a one or two are even of the melodic variety. I love foreign commercials. Check this clip out for this collection. I’m assuming it is in Swedish, but it is so odd when the English comes blasting through. blah blah blah blah Non-Stop DJ-Mix, blah blah blah.

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