While most Trance fans are familiar with A-Listers such as Bryan Kearney, Armin van Buuren and Aly & Fila, there exists a whole other group of individuals whose focus is less on Mainstage appeal and more on achieving engineering perfection within their productions. Most of the time, I personally call them the ‘Technicians‘ of Trance, and it is in this realm that we find some of the highest quality Trance and Progressive that currently exists in today’s current scene. One of the leading figures within this ‘Technicians‘ movement is none other than Thomas Datt, whose blisteringly gorgeous sound designs strives towards the pinnacle of innovation and quality. Datt‘s productions have always been peppered into many sets over the years and many DJ’s such as Paul Oakenfold, Armin van Buuren and Solarstone regard his talents as exceptionally gifted. During 2012, he captured the ability to really stretch his artistic chops with his fantastic debut album entitled, Picking Up The Pieces, which featured many different genres such as Trance, Downtempo and Electronica. Now, he is returning to his album with a host of talented producers at his helm, and is set on crafting some incredible interpretations of many of his luminous singles. Up first is the opening track of his album, 1983.
Thomas Datt- 1983 (Astuni & Manuel Le Saux Re-Lift)
I discovered this monstrous power duo when they released their first dual single of Bring It Back on Nu Depth and was delighted to discover that both of them frequently work together on a host of various remixes. So when I found out that these two were at it again with 1983, I couldn’t resist reviewing the awesome strength that these two provide to the table. Astuni is a fantastic, up and coming Uplifter whose ‘Re-Lifts’ provide an exceptional level of quality within each release. On the other hand, Manuel Le Saux is an artist who needs no introduction. Throughout the years, he has fought tooth and nail to get where he is now and his brilliant extended livesets is often remembered years after a show takes place. Their comprehensive rendition completely overhauls the Original and amps the tempo to a clean 137BPM while tactfully inserting filthy acid squeals, impeccable basslines and thunderous basskicks. The breakdown brings some tension and depth to the playing field as the gradual expansion of sounds elevates the pace towards another league of aesthetic design. With the speed steadily increasing ten fold, it unleashes into a lovely, sorrow-filled melody that works in concordance with its quaking basskicks to deliver both grace and power towards any unsuspecting dancefloor.
Thomas Datt- 1983 (Peter Hulsmans Flashback)
Peter Hulsmans. If there ever was an unsung hero among the Trance world, this man would surely be it. While Astuni & Manuel Le Saux are firmly locked within the Uplifting scene, Hulsmans is completely imbedded within the Technicians field and his vastly intricate productions are, (quite literally), some of the best produced pieces in the entire scene. While his sound is less focused on towering basslines and euphoric melodies, he frequently receives extremely high praise by some of the best in the business and artists like John Askew, Will Atkinson and Nick Callaghan often refer to him as a genius in music production. In Peter‘s interpretation, the ‘Flashback‘ is revealed as David Bowie‘s 1983 smash hit, Let’s Dance, which is heard from cheeky snippets throughout the track. Every single instrument within this remix is polished to an unbelievable degree and the playful variations between smooth, gliding harmonics and various blippy synths provides a fantastic contrast within the piece. Additionally, the individual synths are so well crafted and detailed that simply hearing individual chords delivers a lovely growl that is extremely pleasant to the human ear. All in all, it is one of the highest engineered tracks I’ve heard all year and definitely makes him an artist to look out for.
Both Peter Hulsmans & Astuni & Manuel Le Saux‘s mixes of 1983 are now available on Discover Records via Beatport, so make sure you grab your copy today.
Keep the music alive. -Q