In just under two weeks, the Toronto Trance Family will be venturing to one of our favourite Canadian cities: Montreal. The occasion: one massive trance lineup that makes Monkey Buzinezz’s Trance Unity event held at Circus on June 4th, 2016. A few of us trance fanatics at EDM TOR have decided to go cover this event and will be making the journey to Quebec. This trip was a no-brainer for me. While trance is alive and well in Toronto, an event of this size, with 15 DJs on the bill who are all dedicated to trance music, is still relatively hard to come by. The set times are not to be scoffed at, either. Some sets will be three hours long! Having previously traveled to two Dreamstate events in the last year (rest in peace to my bank account), I know an all-trance event of this size and this close in proximity is something that I should not pass up, even if I had any ounce of self-control when it comes to music events. To add to the excitement, I have never been to Circus. I can’t wait to see what the infamous club and its Funktion-One sound system will provide.
I jumped at the chance to write this article on the Hell Room, while Ashlyn wrote the Heaven Room piece and Edmund wrote for the Earth Room. I was lucky enough to see several of the artists on this line up at Dreamstate in both San Bernardino and San Francisco, and I can admit fully to riding the emerging psytrance wave that is currently popular, hence my selection. There’s just something about grooving to hard hitting, dark, high BPM that is just intriguing and exhilarating to me and countless others, I’m sure.
Ben Nicky is quite possibly the name that I am the most excited for on this lineup. This British DJ/Producer is having an extremely busy year, with multiple shows, yet he still finds time in the studio. His soundcloud remains very active with his own personal releases, remixes, and his infamous podcast, titled Headf*ck radio. With a huge resume, including but not limited to a live mix on BBC Radio 1’s ‘Essential Mix’ show, and gaining support and praise from the likes or Armin van Buuren, Paul van Dyk and Gareth Emery. One thing that I love most about Ben’s style is that he gives us the pounding psy sound that we crave, mixed with some of guilty pleasure, uplifting classic trance tracks that we all know and love. His sets are high energy and very entertaining; there’s no need for him to grab a mic and tell us to jump because his music will already have us going nuts. Ben has been spotted wandering the crowd and interacting with his fans while not on stage; so keep an eye out for this tall, tattooed musical artist and you may have the chance to chat with him! Ben has put out an EDC New York 2016 mix prior to the event to pump people up for the weekend, which can be found here, and here’s one of his recently released uplifting vocal tracks.
Chris Element is a Montreal native, and he currently holds the prestige title of being one of Circus’ resident DJs. He appears to be an opener of choice for Monkey Buziness and a number of large events in the city, including an upcoming event with Jordan Suckley and Standerwick at LeCin5. While creeping his SoundCloud, I was able to find some original releases, a few sets, and his radio show, titled “Zero Hour” where he showcases tech-trance, uplifting, and techno, which now has me looking forward to his set. It appears that Chris may be a Canadian up-and-comer that we should keep an eye out for! Here’s one of his releases, titled Life to Come.
Danilo Ercole is a Brazilian DJ/producer who claims to love the “dark side of trance”, and even dabbles in techno and progressive. I must agree that the dark side of trance is titillating; I cannot wait to hear what this artist will give us. Danilo is only recently beginning to debut in Canada, but is definitely no stranger to the trance scene. Having recently been one of Markus Schulz‘s Coldharbour Recordings favorite producers, I feel that we will see this artist break out more and more as the year progresses. One of Danilo’s claims to fame was when he played at Tomorrowland Brazil alongside some of the most prevalent names in the industry.
Mark Sherry is another name I’m extremely excited to see, as I somehow have missed all of his local appearances. He is known for his innovative tech-trance style, which im sure will have us dancing into the morning. He has worked on collaborations with many of the biggest artists in trance and its sub-genres, and has released huge tracks on many major labels, including Spinnin’, Armada, Lange Recordings, Anjunabeats and more. Mark’s weekly two hour podcast, The Outburst Radio Show, has also received immense attention, having hosted artists like Gareth Emery, Ferry Corsten, Rank 1, and many more as guest mixers. Upon listening to one of his latest Outburst episodes, I loved that I could hear moments of freestanding tech and trance, and moments where the two are perfectly blended together. I’m expecting music that will keep me moving!
Vini Vici is a name that has recently exploded into popularity. Their latest massive remix, Free Tibet, is already on everyone’s playlists. Composed of well-known and experienced producers Aviram Saharai and Matan Kadosh, Vini Vici is no stranger to the psytrance community. Longstanding and hardcore fans have long since known the beauty of these artists, but I feel as though we can credit Vini Vici for being one of the names that has opened many of more eyes to this exciting psytrance world. The project was created from their love for oldschool psytrance and goa trance, releasing their first tracks on Iboga Records. One thing that caught my attention upon first hearing Vini Vici live, was the use of the psychadelic vocals in their music. I first thought of tribal chants, jungles, and even alienistic languages. Then before the possibility of any more thought, a pounding high bpm bassline comes in and all you can do is dance. Their music is far from what most trance fans are used to; it is utterly captivating. These guys are also on my must-see list at Trance Unity.
Sean Tyas, known as “The Degenerate”, burst onto the scene about a decade ago and has been releasing #1 tracks and remixes ever since. He has worked with some of the most significant names, released the hottest remixes, and played on the biggest stages worldwide. Sean plays a variety of trance, but he loves and embraces the darker side. His newest studio album “Degeneration” definitely showcases this. Some tracks showcase vocals, uplifting, and progressive trance, but then I stumbled upon a track called Swarm that brought more bass and an almost “trance-dubstep hybrid” sound that I was absolutely not expecting. Sean is clearly extremely versatile, which has me wondering what he will do with the three hour time slot he was given at T.U.! Will I become a degenerate?
This is worth the trip to Montreal, so why are you still without a ticket? Grab them right here!
HELL ROOM SET TIMES:
21:00 Chris Element
22:30 DJ kärl k-otik
00:00 Danilo Ercole
02:00 Mark Sherry
05:00 Sean Tyas
08:00 Ben Nicky
10:30 Vini Vici
Nicole Robertson – EDM TOR