Friday May 31, 2013 was a special night in Toronto. On a rather busy night, with many other artists in town, Trance Nation, Destiny and Balance were host to the first official Digital Dreams pre-party. Trance Nation Nights Volume 1 was held at Moskito+Bite nightclub with Tomas Heredia and Chris Schweizer headlining, and they played a special b2b performance after their solo sets.
For those who may not know, both Heredia and Schweizer are part of a wave of young, rising Trance producer/DJs, and they are both from Buenos Aires, Argentina. Signed under the Armada label, and receiving lots of support from Armin van Buuren and many others, they have recently gained lots of attention after coming off Armin’s massive tour, A State of Trance 600: The Expedition.
If you caught any of their sets during the tour, more specifically in Sao Paolo or Den Bosch, you are aware of the talent these two young guns possess. They were both here, last November, for Toronto’s very first Gatecrasher event, also hosted by Trance Nation, and blew the roof off of Sound Academy, proving to the crowd how awesome they really are.
The arrival time for my first visit to Moskito was 11:15pm. Greeted by friendly staff, it was a pleasant change from the usual stone faced bouncers I have sometimes encountered. Moskito+Bite is a supper club which has a night club located upstairs, so I made my way upstairs to the venue. The event was priced at only $15-20 at the door, so I was expecting a big turn out to see Heredia and Schweizer blow us away.
Walking in, Ottawa’s Kyle Landry, who was set to spin from 10pm-12am, was already warming up the crowd. He dropped mainly Trance and some Progressive House tunes, which set the tone for what was to come. It was still fairly early, so there were only a small amount of people inside. After my first glance around the establishment, taking it all in, I noticed an atmosphere that was dark and sexy with curtains draping the walls. Red lights were strategically placed throughout to keep the ambiance in check. Booths lined up along one side of the massive dance floor, and a raised bar could be accessed via a couple stairs on the other side. This decent sized venue is like a sensible mix of Uniun and Toika, but with impeccable sound nonetheless. I have to emphasize how wonderful it was that the entire club was pretty much a dance floor, so the management did a fantastic job with capitalizing on space. The crowd was a good mixture of young and old EDM family, but excitement was the same all around; definitely a great vibe amongst everyone.
At midnight, with the club filling quickly, Heredia jumped behind the decks for his two hour solo set. Bringing tons of energy with him, Heredia had the crowd dancing hard and jumping up and down right from the very beginning. Influenced by other Armada signed artists, Heredia played many tracks released under this label with a few also coming from Coldharbour recordings. He opened with KhoMha’s Déjà vu, and the rest of his track selection was very upbeat with a perfect mixture of vocal, melodic trance with tracks like: Clarity (W&W Remix) by Zedd & Foxes, Fool for Life (Tomas Heredia Remix) by Dash Berlin featuring Chris Madin, How Do I Know by Andrew Rayel, Armin van Buuren’s J’ai Envie De Toi and more Dash Berlin featuring Chris Madin Silence In Your Heart (Antillas Remix).
Keeping the crowd lively, Heredia also played a fair share of Uplifting Trance and some very noteworthy tracks like: Apache by Fisherman & Hawkins, Rocker Monster (Tomas Heredia Remix) by Heatbeat, and paying homage to his mentor Armin van Buuren with epic tracks like Communication (Tomas Heredia Remix) and Control Freak (Sander van Doorn Remix). Heredia Debuted his own new tracks as well, and we got to preview Heredia’s newest releases: Alchemist and When I’m With You – both incredible tunes to hear live. The closing track was the classic Gareth Emery Sanctuary (Sean Tyas Remix) featuring Lucy Saunders. Heredia’s future in Trance is going to be incredible if he continues to produce sets like this.
Two hours quickly flew by, and it was time for 20 year old Chris Schweizer to step up to the decks. He wasted absolutely no time getting into the heavy bangers with Electro-trance sounds. Opening up with W&W’s Thunder, the entire crowd, including myself, exploded into cheers. The dancing, to keep up with these beats, was crazy. There was unbelievable vibrancy radiating off Chris with every track he dropped; dancing to his own beats and pumping up the crowd almost effortlessly, it was very clear that he loves what he does wholeheartedly. Schweizer unleashed some of his newest tracks on us. We experienced Release The Kraken and Reflections, both absolutely amazing tracks, produced by Chris Schweizer himself. We heard, yet again, a great mixture of track selections like: Violetta by Orjan Nilsen, Waiting For The Night (Beat Service Remix) by Armin van Buuren, Thing Called Love (Club Mix) by Above & Beyond featuring Richard Bedford, Shivers by Airport, and Love Will Bring It All Around by Giuseppe Ottaviani featuring Eric Lumiere. Schweizer even threw in a little Psy-Trance, for the more underground trance-family, and blew minds with Neelix’s Leave Me Alone (Simon Patterson Remix) before closing out his set with On A Good Day by OceanLab.
Just as Schweizer was finishing up his set, Tomas Heredia resurfaced for the back to back set we were waiting for. These boys knew what was needed to keep the good vibes and energy flowing into the early hours of the morning. It was a little after 4:00am, and Chris and Tomas throwing down tracks like: The Lights by Omnia, Change The World (Estiva Remix) by Daniel Kandi featuring Sarah Russell, and Not Giving Up On Love by Armin van Buuren vs. Sophie Ellis Bextor. Unfortunately, twenty minutes into their b2b, the club shut the speakers off and turned the lights on, so I didn’t get a chance to see the entire set unfold. I was pretty disappointed that this happened since DJs were scheduled to run until 5:00am, and I was looking forward the back to back after two amazing solo sets.
Regardless of how abruptly the night ended, I would say that Trance Nation Nights Volume 1 was a huge success. The overall atmosphere, energy, vibes and attitude of the crowd and venue was nothing short of perfect. It’s always magical when the Toronto Trance Family unites and newcomers walk away feeling like a part of our ever growing family. A very special thank you to everyone who helped put this event together: Trance Nation, Balance, Destiny and Moskito nightclub – you made this night another one for the books.
Monika Sobota – EDM TOR