Trance Tunes for Teleportation
Songs to uplift, unbound, and carry you away into a daydream
How do you connect to music? Do you get fueled from the energy of a beat? Or maybe you turn to your favorite playlist to find solace and feel consoled if you're hurting...maybe it's an outlet for some pent-up rage, or maybe it's an uplifting force? The truth is, there's no such thing as a wrong answer...in fact, that's the beauty of music: It's the only art that can deliver it all at the same time.
Everyone connects to music in a unique way, but usually for the same reason: To feel. Music has the incredible ability to connect us to our deepest emotions and give life to our most primal impulses, and it also has the ability to take us on a journey.
That's what I especially admire about EDM: It's incredible variety makes it possible for a listener to experience a vast range of feelings and energy. It's amazing to think that certain sounds technically fall under one overarching genre— To a scene-floater like me, the likes of deep house, heavy dubstep and lo-fi seem as related as a wolf, a chihuahua, and a monkey. But that's the beauty of it all: The possibilities are infinite. There's always something guaranteed to "hit you in the feels," depending on just what it is you want to feel.
Lately, I've found myself drawn to playlists that truly take me on a journey— songs that temporarily transport me out of my body into another realm of reality. For this, I always seem to come back to trance (and its variations). There's just something about the rich synthesizer harmonies, dream-like vocals and surging energy in this music that feels magical. If you're not a big trance fan, you may beg to differ— don't worry, I won't be offended, but I do feel a little sad you don't get to experience it. Maybe you'll give it another try sometime...
...Luckily enough, I've put together a playlist that may just change your mind, and if you're already onboard with team trance, I hope you will find yourself transported to a better place with a little trance to get away:
1 "Stadium One" by Steve Brian
Steve Brian never fails to deliver when it comes to progressive and uplifting trance. His 2018 track with Emme "Stadium One" brings a mix of big energy, vibrant harmonies and an elevating build-up that opens into a euphoric release. It's sort of like taking the first big breath at the end of a hike when you finally get to look over the peak of the mountain. As a matter of fact, this song always makes it on my hiking playlist...it's a truly a track that feels like it was made to accompany those "wow" moments. If you decide to add this tune to your next adventure playlist, save it for a spot with a view, you won't regret it!
2 "Amber Sun" by Gareth Emery
Another playlist must-have I always come back to when I want a pick-me-up is Gareth Emery's wonderfully uplifting track "Amber Sun". I particularly love Ashely Wallbridge's dreamy vocal sample that soars above the melody throughout the track. In all honesty, the entire Kingdom United Album is a goldmine of uplifting tunes, but this song in particular brings a joyous warm energy that always hits the spot when I need a little bump of serotonin.
3 "After All" by Luttrell
Technically, this piece falls a little out of the traditional umbrella of trance, but I had to include San Francisco producer Luttrell's "After All" on the list. A Unique blend of ethereal vocals, soothing downtempo beat, and a cool and crisp melody shine through the track. If I had to describe the piece in three words, it would be whimsical, light, and euphoric. I love listening to this tune on long walks along the edge of the South Hill's High Drive in my hometown of Spokane, Washington. It's a place I often go to find some solitude and peace, which makes it a perfect setting for this soothing piece.
4 "You'll Be Okay" - Gareth Emery
Speaking of soothing, this next track is one of the top songs I turn to when I really need some love. Sometimes, we all just need someone to tell us it's all going to be ok. I can't count how many times I've played, hummed, or recited the lyrics of Gareth Emery and featured artist Annabel's "You'll be Okay" over the course of the pandemic and other difficult moments during the past year. I sometimes repeat the first verse of the song over and over like an affirmation:
"I was made to live this life
And live is what I've done
Found a warmth throughout the night
Saw hope where there was none"
The full lyrics of the song go on to touch on loss, facing the prospect of the unknown, and making peace with our condition— a struggle that anyone who's made it to the other side of the pandemic has come to know. It's the very last line of the song that always gets me:
"and I know, you'll be okay"
Its a simple but powerful line that when charged with belief, it has the power to pull you out of those truly dark places, even when it seems impossible. This song holds a truly special place in my heart, and I hope it can bring you light in those times you really need it too.
5 "Steps of Deep Slumber" - Seven Lions
I couldn't go on without representing the legendary trance label Anjunabeats in the playlist. The UK record label has hosted genre staples such as Mat Zo, Arty, and Andrew Bayer, and in more recent years, they've expanded to include artists representing different sounds such as melodic dubstep superstar Seven Lions. This is an artist with an incredible gift for variety; whether its melodic dubstep, bass, trance or psytrance, Seven Lions never fails to deliver big in whatever style he produces.
"Steps of Deep Slumber" is another "big awe moment" tune. I remember the song playing in the car as my fiancée and I drove up to Chicago while moving cross country. The drop came down just as the skyline full of sleek glass skyscrapers rose over the dashboard ,and I lost myself in what seemed like a living daydream for a few moments (yeah, I don't get out to big cities all that often.)
6 "Stay"- Grum
Another Anjunabeats artist worth mentioning is Scottish producer Grum. The mesmerizing visuals and melodic flow in his music generate a sort-of audio-visual massage when combined. "Stay" is a perfect example of a song that makes you just want to sway back and forth with your eyes closed.
7 "Dynamic"- Comic Gate
Now this one's a bit of a throw-back, but the playlist wouldn't be complete without including the renowned classic trance duo Cosmic Gate. There's a reason these guys have been producing successfully for multiple decades— their style and energy always produces a whole experience. "Dynamic" is a tune for those moments that get my belly fluttering...if you read my previous article, you know exactly what I mean. This song is a staple of those late-night/early dawn moments after a wild night when I find myself suspended somewhere between dream and reality. At the same time, this tune is also a great energizer, and I often pop this one on my playlist any time I want a pick-me up.
Other honorable mentions...
I could go on and on sharing my favorite content from these artists, but that's just far too much for one article. If these sounds really connected with you, I highly recommend exploring their work. The Anjunabeats label alone contains a whole universe of music and artists from various styles and backgrounds in the trance scene, and you're pretty much guaranteed to never run out of content. You can stream all tracks mentioned in this article on Spotify, and if you have premium, all are available for download. All that said, I hope this playlist successfully brought you on a little mental vacation!
If you like what you read, stay tuned to my page for more upcoming playlists and stories!