Trance music’s origins can be fairly estimated to be European in essence, more specifically German. As for when it started emerging in clubs and raves, the 1990s are a safe bet. The obscure information about origin in place and time of electronic music might seem annoying to some, and questions the integrity of it as a ‘new’ genre for others. However, to me, that makes it all the better because several countries and people can claim it as their own, or at least no one an really attribute it to a specific nation, movement or time, making it a truly universal pleaser.
Anyway, on to what makes Trance music different from other EDM music. Trance’s defining feature is its dynamic musical form, which builds up and down throughout a track. The ‘entrancing’ effect it has on ravers is supposed to derive from the fact the music gradually builds up to a point where the music climaxes, and the revelers burst into an energetic dance spree after subdued moves in tune with the ‘build up’ phase. That is why Trance fanatics often conserve their energy specifically for those climaxes, making the sea of revelers seems calmer than House or Techno revelers.
Trance music also incorporates vocals most of the time, with short phrases that can be often dubbed as ‘uplifting’ and are always easy to follow. Others though provide a more intense poetic aspect, while my favorite type focuses purely on the musical aspect.
Clubs rarely showcase Trance music, for it does not ensure steady and paced dancing throughout the night, but instead offers a relatively fast tempo, and as mentioned earlier, a build up and build down of the track. Stadium events and raves are Trance’s playground where revelers with the intent of attaining that altered state of consciousness are the majority of the crowd.
Beats Per Minute: 130 to 155 BPM (faster than House music)
Famous DJs: Armin van Buuren, Tiesto, Paul van Dyk, Ferry Corsten, Above & Beyond, Cosmic Gate
Famous Classics: Adagio for Strings – Tiesto, Burned with Desire, Communication Part 3- Armin van Buuren, For An Angel, Crush – Paul van Dyk, Till I Come (9pm) – ATB, Children – Robert Miles, Can’t Sleep – Above and Beyond, As the Rush Comes – Motorcycle
Famous Recent Hits: In and Out of Love, Never Say Never, Unforgivable, Fine Without You, Imagine, Broken Tonight -Armin van Buuren, Gaia – Tuvan
Famous Events: Armin Only – Netherlands, Creamfields and the Global Gathering – UK, Together As One -Los Angeles
Famous Hotspots: Goa (India) and the Netherlands
Samples I Recommend: Rush Hour (Original Mix) – Armin van Buuren – A good example of trance without vocals, others like it by Armin include: Communication Part 3, Imagination, Intricacy.
Satellite (Above and Beyond Remix) – Oceanlab – Inspirational Vocals
Find Yourself (Cosmic Gate Remix) – John O’Callaghan – Amazing Vocals, not too old
Some DJs in Lebanon Who Spin Trance: Amadeus