Bassline Music Bar provided a homey, friendly environment for Tranceformers: The Trance Battles Continue, the third Tranceformers event. Electric Star Productions (ESP) had lights and sound right on point; the laser array blended perfectly with the amazing audio to provide an immersive and psychedelic trance experience. I arrived early in the night as the musical teams for the night – the Psytrancing Decepticons, the Hard Trance Autobots, and the Ambigious Aliens – were still gearing up and the dance floor was empty. It would not stay that way for long though, as the Trance battles officially began!
Paul Savage of the Ambiguous Aliens team started off the night with some vintage 90s acid trance. The fast-paced but familiar beats were a great choice for opening and set an energy and tone for the rest of the night. Although the crowd was quite sparse at first, throughout the set, as more people arrived, a general migration from the bar to the dance floor began.
Local favourite DJ Shok, on the Hard Trance Autobots team, once again lived up to his reputation for genre-bending as he spun his way through a fantastic hard/vocal trance set. Some highlights included his signature Castles in the Sky anthem, as well as an awesome version of Zombie Nation of Kernkraft400. He picked up smoothly from where Savage left off and continued to push the nights’ energy higher, encouraging the dance floor to fill up.
Taking over the decks next was Audi Étoffe, the other half of the Ambiguous Aliens team, who, as usual, amped up the vibe with some beautiful mind-melting progressive hard Psytrance. With some driving tracks that just called out for you to move to them, Audi’s set filled the dance floor and energized everyone! Guest DJ Animalium also added to this set, mixing in some of his favourites, including Get on Top by Power Source (Mystical Complex remix), and The Wild East by Indra. As a special note, both Audi and Animalium were celebrating their birthdays over the weekend, so it was wonderful to have them out sharing their time and music with everyone at Tranceformers!
DJ Fraktl, stepped up and kept the energy flowing with his fantastically mixed hard trance for the Autobots team. Dropping some old school beats like Alphazone’s Stay, with newer tracks and taking listeners and dancers on a musical journey that both reminded some of the nostalgic past while pushing on toward the future – keeping the dance floor packed the whole time. It was one of the best hard trance sets I have heard in a while, definitely one of my favourites of the night.
Next up was special guest MagicMushroom for the Psytrancing Decepticons, who absolutely killed it with a Psytrance set that had such seamless transitions that it felt more like one single track rather than a whole set. High-energy and driving, MagicMushroom’s music insisted – no, demanded – to be danced to, beginning to end! Although placing Free Tibet at the end of the set made it stand out a bit less than it usually does when it is played in the middle, the entire set was phenomenal and stood out as the pinnacle of Psytrance for the evening. For anyone who missed it, or simply wants to hear it again, MagicMushroom has put his Tranceformers set up on soundcloud for your listening pleasure – check it out!
DJ Davide Ferrara, also of the Psytrancing Decepticons, closed out the night with a stunning Goa trance set that swept in like a fresh breeze. More melodic and uplifting than the previous sets’ Psytrance and hard trance, Davide’s Goa trance tapped into the same high energy but sought a lighter mood. Ganesha Pramana by Khetzal was one of my favorites of the set, evoking images of the desert through eastern musical influences and deep, enchanting resonances. Another of my favourite tracks from this set was Mahadeva by Astral Projection. All of Davide’s set mixed amazingly with the laser array, providing a great audio and visual combination that was a perfect end to this night.
Trance-filled from start to finish, Tranceformers: The Trance Battles Continue provided an amazing night for all types of trance fans. With Hard and Vocal trance from the Hard Trance Autobots DJ Shok and DJ Fraktl, Psytrance and Goa trance from the Psytrancing Decepticons, and the Ambiguous Aliens spinning Progressive and Acid trance, nearly all subtypes of the genre were represented. The wonderful variety yielded throughout the night is just another example of Electric Star Production’s continuing commitment to musical quality and diversity. In comparison with past Tranceformers events, I believe these events have continually improved, and this latest installment certainly boasted some of the most memorable sets of all three events. Additionally, the change in venue from Tota (which recently closed) to Bassline was also an improvement and the vibe all night was comfortable and friendly. While the “battle” raged on the dance floor until 3AM, I think the clear winners here were everyone who attended and had a chance to be a part of this awesome event!
Until next time, happy raving!
DJ Davide Ferrara
Jade Benjamin – EDM TOR