We could sense that something was about to be different in this new album right when Armin announced the release of it showing us the art work album cover by the renowned photographer,film and music video director Anton Corbjn.
“Don’t be a prisoner of your own style”….this is what Armin van Buuren always stated and honestly, on my side, I could not agree more, considering that the sound is always evolving as well as studio technologies so, obviously when you listen back to his old trance tunes like, “Love you more” and then compare it to, for instance,something more recent like “Brute” (two songs that I truly love) you can clearly hear and feel how the sound changed as the years went by….but that said, I sadly came to terms with the fact that nowadays mainstream dance music took over that trance beats I loved so much….or at least it seems to happen with all the artists that become so big in the industry.
Not saying trance is dead by the way, because we still have some good big trance artists who remain true to that sound; by the way if it is pure trance you are looking for, you ain’t gonna find a full trance album here.
When you listen to his sixth studio album you can clearly hear that Armin’s trance signature tho, but he moved forward and decided to “embrace” so many different genres….Must admit this is a huge work he released proving that he is able to renew his style keeping the trance vibe alive.
This album is full of great collaborations, such as Eric Vloeimans, Cimo Frankel, Kensigton, Hardwell and Cosmic Gate, who contribute to make it a precious jewel in the market.
The title track “Embrace” with the famous Dutch trumpeter Vloeimans’ solo is such a great intro to the album, (as we were used to in the previous Armin’s albums already )a very enjoyable and totally unexpected kind of tune, until that smooth jazz turns into cheesy elctro house at least.
“Another you”, feat. Mr.Probz, just reminds me of the past summer when Armin and Mr. Probz where performing it together everywhere, a full load of good and happy vibes,and a perfect follow up of “This is what it feels like”.
The collaboration with Hardwell for “Off the Hook” is exactly what I expected…a festival banger, something to make you jump, nothing very new nor exciting…
“Strong Ones” fet. Cimo Frankel is a totally uplifting tune and I love the lyrics as well.
“Heading up high” is going to be the fourth single of this album during the first months of 2016 and it really stucks in your head, thumbs up!!
“Embargo” with Cosmic Gate and “Old Skool” are made for the clubbers obviously and are the perfect tracks to put you in the party mood, especially “Old Skool”, it really gives you the feeling of being at an Armin’s gig….which makes me remind you that Mr.van Buuren announced a new Armin Only tour already, yay!!
“Make it right”, “Gotta Be love” and “Slisptream” will make it impossible for you to stand still without dancing and some of the other tunes,like “Freefall”(feat.Bully Songs) just remind me of that SHM sound I so loved at parties, good tunes but not very orginal…
The closing tune of the album “Looking for your name” is a very sweet song with a warm melody perfect to chill after all that dancing 🙂
When all is said and done, I can say I am very happy with this album, Armin is showing us he can basically play whatever it crosses his mind and making it huge, and now, just like my friend Fred said….le’ts wait for the remixes, i think something great is coming up about some of these tunes.