Pulling off of an incredibly successful album debut after a long hiatus of releases, the legendary Armin van Buuren has unleashed years of work to the masses around the world. His Intense album has been a massive production project since day one, which included a plethora of lyricists and a variety of different Trance styles. After his recent collaboration with W&W on D# Fat and his certain song selections in his current sets, many die hard fans had feared the worst: that he had forgotten his roots and jumped on the bandwagon into what was popular with Electro lines and Trouse sensibilities (Ed note: This does not represent my views or the views of Your EDM on the subject though). However, Armin had put those rousing fears to rest with the release of his brilliant Who Is Afraid Of 138?! track on Intense. First premiered as his opening track during his 138 set at Den Bosh for the ASOT 600 Expedition Tour, it brings back a nostalgic view of his older productions and showcases that he still has the chops to make the music that had made him successful. He himself is an advent supporter of the faster styles of Trance, often devoting the second hour of his radio show to heavily support these talented artists. After realizing the immense success of the 138 stage in Den Bosh, he has released his own WAO138 label, whose first self titled release of Who Is Afraid Of 138?! will feature two remixes from the astounding talents of Photographer and Jordan Suckley.
Armin van Buuren- Who Is Afraid Of 138?! (Photographer Remix)
Photographer has transformed from a seldom seen collaboration into a terrifying behemoth that has been capitalizing on their success with each release. Exploding onto the scene with their 2012 anthem, Airport, the Ukrainians have been all over the entire Trance scene with singles such as Tic Tac and the wickedly filthy This Is Upstep, as well as a slew of remixes from many different artists and labels. Each one of their productions is heavily supported by all the big names in Trance and the amount of pure, raw power that they inject into each piece is unrivaled by anyone else in the scene. Their remix to Who Is Afraid Of 138?! is no different, as they transform it into a colossal force of might akin to the mighty strength of Mother Nature. While the Original has that signature soft touch in Armin‘s productions, Photographer cranks up the energy to a shattering 11, bringing forth a devastating bassline that runs on pure torque and energy. Coupled with their signature basskicks and ruthless synth lines, the beginning transitions into the beautiful, submerged breakdown before pulling the veil and unleashing pure, unabridged euphoria with a gorgeous synth line. It builds into one of the biggest drops ever, infusing both emotional Uplifting melodies and the ferocious power of Photographer to make a perfect harmony between the two. Simply outstanding.
Armin van Buuren- Who Is Afraid Of 138?! (Jordan Suckley Remix)
Jordan Suckley, on the other hand, his been a diamond in the rough, whose blisteringly intense Tech Trance tunes have cultivated into some truly amazing talent in the scene. To his blazing remixes of Corderoy‘s Mechanical Tears and Jase Thirlwall‘s Gobbstopper to his deadly Do Or Die and his monstrous collaboration with Simon Patterson on Vanilla, his career has skyrocketed in 2013 and doesn’t show signs of stopping. His unique ‘Complextro’ style of writing, as well as his unbelievable basslines have certainly created a sound of its own and the ‘Jordan Suckley sound’ is striven for by even the best of Tech enthusiasts. In his rendition to Who Is Afraid Of 138?!, Suckley unleashes his rocker side, as the vicious basslines produces a new, exciting sound that we hope to see cultivated in the future. He starts by keeping the breakdown in tact (again, don’t fix what isn’t broke) before producing a clipped version of the anthemic melody with a cheeky Breaks snare added in for cool timbral variety. He smartly keeps the beautiful guitar line in before twisting the angelic melodies of Armin van Buuren into a demonic and evil buildup. The result is a fast, in-your-face bassline that brings a jamming, growling Tech line to the forefront. With intertwining acid lines and brutally consistent percussion, it is a welcome change of pace for the entire EP and a rough mix that is perfect to set loose onto the dancefloor.
Both the Photographer and Jordan Suckley mixes of Armin van Buuren‘s single, Who Is Afraid Of 138?!, is out now on Armada’s brand new sub-label, WAO138?! on Beatport. Definitely make sure to purchase both as we would like to see the initial success of this release bring forth more amazing trance talent in the future. Make sure to also check out the Original Mix as well!
Keep the music alive. -Q