Since the early ’90s, when pioneers like Ferry Corsten, Paul Van Dyk, and Jam & Spoon crafted some of the earliest and best-loved trance records, the genre has gone through huge swings in popularity. Today, the sound is as strong as ever, as artists like Armin van Buuren, Above & Beyond, and plenty of newcomers fly the flag for trance the world over. To find out why the genre has endured for so long, we spoke to some of its greatest producers – and some of their answers may surprise you.
HOW HAS TRANCE CHANGED SINCE ITS EARLY DAYS?
MATT DAREY: Trance is a chameleon of electronic genres. It’s fused with, and taken influence, from every other genre along its journey. The old sounds return, then fuse with the new.
LORENZO SENNI: My interest in trance is focused on the build-up. I believe that trance evolved into EDM, which pushed the limits of what the build-up can do. Tension and release becomes a psychotic rollercoaster of emotions – the audience is already bored a few seconds after the drop, so there’s always a need for a new build-up to keep the attention high. This is taken to an extreme now, but I’m pleased to see that, actually.
WHY DO NEW GENERATIONS KEEP FALLING IN LOVE WITH TRANCE?
MATT DAREY: I think it’s the way that trance feels like a universal family, connected and nurtured by fans, DJs, and producers. Above & Beyond and Armin Van Buuren in particular are titanic forces in this, focusing their efforts on maintaining this family feeling. They’ve undoubtedly kept the genre growing.