As some may recall, there used to be a time when trance music was stylistically boxed in. Either it fit the predominant view of high-energy uplifting to a tee, or a barrage of “this is not trance” comments would be imminent. But over time, even the most headstrong purists came to realize that trance music can’t, won’t and shouldn’t be pigeonholed. It’s about breaking the mold instead, to capture that particular feeling no matter the tempo or the sound. And that notion is echoed by the twentieth installment of his A State of Trance mix album series: ‘A State of Trance 2023 (Mixed by Armin van Buuren)’.
Brandishing tracks from artists such as Ahmed Helmy, Ben Gold, Bryan Kearney, Eelke Kleijn, Ferry Corsten, Luke Bond, Maarten de Jong and Maddix across three sides rather than the usual two, ‘A State Of Trance 2023 (Mixed by Armin van Buuren)’ shows that the essence of trance music reaches far, wide and beyond the once-imposed borders. From the slower, melodic house & techno-tinged tracks you hear on the beach to the crossbreed bangers played in the club to the highly energetic Who’s Afraid Of 138?! tunes that tears the dance floor apart, the mix album imparts that the genre’s diversity is a major strength rather than a flaw. And if we could just take that view and apply it to the grand scheme of things, the world may just become a much better place.