Being my first week back at work after my christmas holidays, there has been the usual deluge of things to catch up on. When combined with trying to get back into proper work and sleep habits, it has made trying to sit down and write code rather difficult. It is times like this that I turn to the single best thing I’ve found to make me concentrate – Trance music.

I first discovered that I was really into Trance during uni; I’d been a fan of various Techno tracks around at the time but it wasn’t until a friend told me to listen to a Paul Oakenfold bootleg live set (gatecrasher in 1999) that I became really hooked. That was the first time I’d heard a full length live mix, and it’s still one of my favourites. While living on campus at uni I started collecting all of his ’99 essential mix world tour, along with stacks of bootlegs by other DJs (currently Armin Van Buuren‘s State Of Trance mixes).

Since I work in a mostly R&D office, we are not only allowed but encouraged to bring in headphones and listen to whatever music we want. When I started 4 years ago, it didn’t take me long to realise that the continual beats not only drowned out any distractions but helped to keep me alert (although drinking far too much coke at the time probably contributed to that too ;)). With a sizable collection to draw from, that’s all I listened to at work for a very long time.

So I was happy to discover that over the break I had a few episodes of Trance podcasts to catch up on. Techtronic Sound is the best by far, but I’ve also been enjoying the TrancePortal “Trance Tuesday” podcasts as they are usually an hour or two long live mix. In particular their Live at SUBmerge episode is some of the best Trance I’ve heard in a while; I’ve listened to it twice already.


The irony is that for most of my Uni assignments I took someone’s recommendation and used a CD full of Pink Floyd MP3s to keep me going. It did help but any time I hear the first beats of “Money” and “Time” it conjurs up memories of all nighters and trying not to fall asleep.

bonus tags: . Just a taste of how varied my musical interests are.