DJ Tiësto at the Guvernment (132 Queen's Quay East), Saturday (October 6). $27.50. www.aphex.com Rating: NNNNN
Few genres in electronic music inspire the extreme response that trance elicits. Either you love it or you hate it with a passion. Holland's DJ Tiësto attributes some clubgoers' aversions to trance to their lack of emotional sensitivity.
"Trance is a very emotional kind of music. It makes people become more open and care for each other. Lots of people can't handle this or are just not that sensitive, especially people who think their ego is more important than other people."
In spite of its hedonistic reputation, trance isn't seen by Tiesto as particularly drug-oriented. He thinks the media have blown that out of proportion. To him, it's all about feelings.
"Drugs are used in all kinds of music. If you go to a rock concert there's coke everywhere. I like all kinds of music, as long as it has something that moves me."
Tiësto started his DJ career back in 1985, before trance or progressive house were around, let alone the dominant sound of Europe. It isn't yet as successful in North America, although Tiësto's remix of Delerium's Silence, featuring Sarah McLachlan, did make history as the first dance track to break into regular rotation on daytime mainstream North American radio.
"I've been playing every weekend for the last 12 years, and haven't heard many other DJs. So I am more of a self-made DJ.
"The scene is really fresh in North America and the crowd is less spoiled then in Europe. Here, the music is still really underground, while in Europe you find a lot of dance tracks on the pop charts."
Having increased his visibility through the McLachlan mixes, Tiësto now feels it's time to move on with his own projects. The head of his own label called Black Hole Recordings, he's released numerous mixed compilations as well as his own material. Coming up soon is a full-length album on Nettwerk, the same label that carries McLachlan.
"I can only remix a track when I really like it. Her voice is so beautiful that I wanted to use it as an extra instrument. Working with a voice like Sarah's makes my job as a remixer much easier. I've remixed Faithless, Sarah McLachlan, Dave Matthews and Kosheen, so I'd rather work on my own tracks now."