FERRY CORSTEN discovers his ‘BLUEPRINT’ with new Sci-fi concept album

FERRY CORSTEN:  “Very excited to announce my brand new album & tour #Blueprint coming soon! Download the first single for free via http://flashover.choons.at/blueprint “

Ferry Corsten discovers his ‘Blueprint’ with new Sci-fi concept album
Release date: Coming Spring 2017
For many music fans the art and craft of the album has been lost to a digital age, for others the vision of a concept album often lacks that atmosphere-enhancing quality. Dutch electronic music producer Ferry Corsten is an artist who shares this view. It is a view that has led him to complete his fifth and, by his own admission, most ambitious artist album to date. A true concept album conceived by a wilful passion to recode how the music delivers its story, ‘Blueprint’ is a new LP that its architect sees as being “greater than the sum of its parts”.
Stimulated by an idea to unite the music with a storyline that stretches beyond a nebulous lyrical theme, Ferry wanted to explore his appreciation for the art of screenwriting and film scores and bring to the project a wider scaling approach. Drafting in acclaimed screenwriter David H Miller (of House Of Cards and Rosewood fame), the pair worked closely on storyboarding a narrative to accompany the albums conceptual direction. What results for the end listener is a body of work that is polished, synthesised and intellectual in its in conclusion.
With the storyline giving nods to the proses of iconic sci-fi authors such as Jules Verne, Hugo Gernsback and most distinctively HG Wells, whilst equally sharing familiarities with modern day shows such as The OA, Westworld and retro Sci-fi-fest Stranger Things, ‘Blueprint’ is an explorative piece of work that puts Sci-fi at its interstellar core. Hollywood actor Campbell Scott (known for The Amazing Spider-Man and The Exorcism of Emily Rose) provides his voice as the narrative of the album flirts between first and third person narration. A unique output for one of the biggest names in the electronic scene but Ferry’s attempts with ‘Blueprint’ is to bring a wider perspective to the listener, as he aims the album to be inclusive of dimensions of religion, history, idea and science fiction.
‘Blueprint’ is truly an explorative journey and one which the iconic producer is finally excited to be sharing with you…
To give fans an opening introduction of the album’s tracklisting Ferry has chosen to gift the first single and title track ‘Blueprint’ on his official SoundCloud as an offering to give any eager ears a taste of what’s to come. Already support by some of the biggest names in the galaxy that includes selectors such as Armin van Buuren, Markus Schulz and Above & Beyond, ‘Blueprint’ is available to listen/download via http://flashover.choons.at/blueprint
Opening with the announcement of nine confirmed shows spread across Asia, Europe and North America, the official Blueprint Album Tour will touch down at Myst in Shanghai, SW4 in London, Exchange in Los Angeles, Webster Hall in New York with more to be announced.


So , here we go with another interview made during the incredible ASOT night in Utrecht, and let me tell you, this one was in my bucket list for quite a long time.
A few months ago, before the full line up was revealed, I shot an e-mail to David Gravell’s management, asking for the permission to interview the artist during the A State Of Trance Festival in Utrecht, knowing he plays there every year I thought I had a chance…but unfortunately I found out that David was not going to play there this time!
Now, telling you I was bummed is an understatement, I really felt miserable, not only I was going to miss one of his insane sets, I wouldn’t be able to meet him either!!
But, it is what it is and I tought to myself: maybe better luck next time….
Then, during the night, just while I was waiting to interview one of the artists, Justine,( one of the lovely PR girls’ from Armada) came to me saying: “Jess, David Gravell is here, would you like to meet him?”
I think I was about to hug her for how happy I felt…and so, here we go, another dream came true, let’s meet the amazing DAVID GRAVELL !!
J: Hi David, thanks a lot for supporting The Backstage Access, how you doing?
D: I am doing very good, I just came back from Jerusalem, I was there for the first time and did a show on Tuesday, it was amazing, a lot of trance fans, and after this I just came back home, and then I just came straight to ASOT. So I am here, meeting a few friends, my management…also my mum and dad are here, I saw them on the MainStage, and because I am playing here every year, this year,even if I am not playing….  they still booked an hotel in the surroundings and came, they always wanna see ASOT.
I normally play at ASOT each year, but we discussed a bit about it  and we chosen to do a few other ASOT so I am skipping this one but I will be back on other ASOT festivals. But even so, being here, seeing my friends, Armin, you know…it’s always very nice to be in this chilled environment, where you are with all your friends, you know every djs, it’s very good.
It’ s just like a family, it’s just so nice.
J: What does ASOT mean to you?
D: Oh, I’ve got this question a lot…My first ASOT was with my friends and I remember that I was in the car listening to the music and then I thought it was different from everything else, it was little bit special, magical, what I love is that everyone is different, everyone is loving the music, everyone is uniting and coming together to celebrate, there are a lot of other festivals, for sure, but this particular one is nice and unique, I haven’t seen anything like this!!
J: I know you are releasing a new tune in two weeks…
D: Yeah, how do you know??
J: A little bird told me …
D: Haha, ok that’s cool because I actually have a new release coming in two weeks, I can’t say the name yet but   Armin is playing it already for half a year and I am very looking forward to it…it will introduce you to my new sound  I am working on and it has something unique in itself.
Now . we know which song is it hehe 🙂
and you can find more about the release in my previous article here
J: When will your album be released?
D:  Well first I am gonna release a mix compilation, so I will have tracks from other djs, and there will be some new tracks of mine as well, but my own artist album will be ready probably next year, I am already working on it, it’s almost finished  but you know… It’s nice to change a little bit things on, when you are working a little bit ahead  of time… because I like to do that, so first of all there will be this mix compilation in April with a few new tracks to introduce my new sound, and the name of the compilation (Discover)  will be also introducing my brand for my live shows, so I am actually working on my live shows as well with new visuals and new interesting stuff to make it more engaging when I perform live
J: Are you using any special tools at the moment in your studio? 
D: Oh that’s a very interesting question, I got very inspired by Deadmau5, I am a huge fan of him and he released a lot of his own plug ins, just  like last year he released a plug in called Serum and I’ve been a huge fan of it cause it allows you to do what you want, you have to be a bit into the sound design level, but if you get to understand the synth you are going to pull any kind of sound off it ; what I really like about it is that you have like the synth plug in, but you also have the fx plug in, so next to the normal plug in you can make very weird fx , I have been using it for loads of strange effects on my tracks right now and also I actually bought the new Virus, I mean the hardware synth and it has all the old school trance sounds in it , Orjan Nilsen said to me: “You have to get this one !!” and so I bought it last year and it’s amazing, it really has the analog sound so I’ve been using it in every track , it has a powerful sound and you don’t need too many plug ins to get that sound because it’s analog and I love it, it’s cool!!
J.Where does your inspiration come from?
D: My inspiration is coming from everywhere, like when I am traveling, I get ideas, when I watch a movie I get ideas, and when I get an idea, I kinda work on it and more ideas are flowing, you can see my brain like a hard drive with all those great memories from old school trance, all those things… and when I start making music I am just able to figure out  exactly what the track is gonna be in the end so, I think the inspiration is coming from a lot of places, from everywhere. I listen to every kind of music and it makes it more interesting for me that understanding different kinds of music makes it easier to get melodies for different kind of stuff.
J: Thanks a lot Danny, it’s been a pleasure chatting with you and hope to catch up with you again soon with your next releases!!
To be honest with you, if it wasn’t because the interview schedule was crazy that night, I think I would have asked him other 100 questions ..such an inspiring, friendly and open minded talented guy… so I hope we’ll have the chance to continue our conversation very soon 🙂


If you were lucky enough to attend the epic celebration of ASOT 800 last February 18th, you are probably still buzzing about it, it seems that Armada and ALDA team raises the stakes every year and for sure they never disappoint!!


Ruben de Ronde and Rodg graced the stage for a massive opening of this celebration in Utrecht.

This match made in heaven teamed up for a b2b set that honestly was so great to blow our minds!!


In Ruben de Ronde words:

“When we were asked to open the mainstage at A State Of Trance Festival in Utrecht we knew straightaway that we didn’t “just” want to play a regular set. So Rodg and myself have been working day and night to deliver something VERY special for you, and we have played a set with 100% new and exclusive music, produced together, including some fantastic collabs with some of our favourite artists”


Yes, 100% new music….the guys were on fire!! But there’s more….They are going to release a brand new album with these tunes, it’s called ” TogetheRR” and the double RR at the end stand for Ruben & Rodg obviously.


You can preorder it :HERE

and for now you have the chance to enjoy their track ” Larger Than Life” ( Ruben de Ronde, Rodg, Sir Notch) that has also been premiered during the night. 

As the previous collaboration Sir Notch did with Ruben, for ” Time Has Come”,  also “Larger Than Life” boast a positive lyric full of good vibes and the catchy melody is made to put you in a good mood for sure!!

Another tune taken form the album and premieredthat night is “Intergalactic” a stunning collaboration with Estiva ( more details in the interview we had with him)

If you couldn’t attend their show or if you just can’tget enough of their vibes, you can listen to the set HERE

The amazing duo even find the time during their busy night to meet up with us for a few words 

J:Thank you guys  for supporting again THE BACKSTAGE ACCESS

Ruben&Rodg: No problem 🙂

J: What a massive set, you played!! 

Ruben&Rodg: Thank you!

J:So, now I wanna know everything about the new album




Do you have like… 2 hours?? (Laugh)

(meanwhile Estiva walks by to greets the guys and they suggest me to have a chat with him too as he’s one of the collaborators of their album…..I did so! )


 Well, you already know the story, but as soon as we found out we  gonna  be playing together on the mainstage we wanted to bring something extra to the table instead of just playing itself, so I remember we stood outside a Praxys (Dutch hardware store chain)…


 yeah yeah, it was  September, the weather was still nice and we were just seeing each other for an ice cream around the corner, he was in the David Lewis studio, and we just met  to discuss the matter, we said we need to do something special…yeah, yeah right, we need to play only our own productions, ok …ok, yeah, so far so good, why not like making an album then??Why not? Mean…if we are going to play only our productions, why not? 


and that’s how it started…


 That’s how it started, that’s where the stress came in….laugh


Yeah basically… we finished the last part this week.


Yes actually last contract was signed yesterday, so yesterday they uploaded to all the stores, to iTunes, and I texted him this morning at 2.30 am  “pre-order !! We made it”


Ruben :

And at 6.45 He sent me a text: I can’tsleep! Haha

(Anyway guys it has been amazing and i can’t wait to download all the songs) 

J: But now, most important question of the interview: how are your cats???

They both laugh….


They’re good


 they’re good, Binky is probably hungry, Bella is  probably stirring up stuff at home, the usual, yeah, actually i have a funny video on my phone, you should watch it  it’s a slow motion fighting of my cats

J: Oh i know I ‘ve watched it on instagram, haha, it was very funny



Oh  so just to let you know this, just before I went here I’ve texted him saying hey are you ready for tonight?

And I sent him a picture of  what i was doing at the moment, and…..Rodg you can show the picture…


(We all laugh, cause the picture was about a big amount of  cat food)

I was buying cat food.


So I was like, yeah yeah I am looking forward to it man, and he was like, ok, just let me get some cat food and then we can go off hahah

Ruben :

so yeah, our cats are on point right now, but you already know about this …


 You like these things but probably people who don’t have or never had cats are like ahhh stop it with this cats thing  but…you know….

J: well I’ m actually loving to see the other side of the artist, i think it’s cute, and if i interview someone that i know is owning a pet I always ask about that as well

Ruben and Rodg laugh…



J: what does ASOT mean to you?


For me, it kinda changed, you know, I’ve been playing here for the 3rd time, before that I was a visitor, it was about… you heard new music, a lot of productions, you know it was just an amazing festival, but now, I am here as a dj, playing the record I made in the studio…it  is more about I am gathering people here, I bring people together to enjoy music all together and especially for this event they come from all over the world, you see flags from countries you can’t even think of, that’s pretty special like, we, with our music bring these people together, that’s exactly what ASOT mean to me.


I think the most important thing about ASOT is unifying, like  bringing people together, the media and the government are trying to divide everyone nowadays, try to scare people and make  sure that everybody hates each other like  you need to hate that person because he does that and so…I think with ASOT or with music in general we are trying to do something different, we are trying to bring people together so that a perfect example is when you see people with palestinian flag or israeli flag and they can dance together like they are here for the music not for any political reasons….not to spread hate…

(Wow thanks Ruben we got some pretty deep stuff here…)

J: Where is your cooperation going now? Should we expect more set like this one ?

Rodg :

Yes, we will be behind the decks more often this year together 


yes also in  some very big places, we can’t say now but..you’ll see, we’re are working on that!

J: Correct me if I am wrong but I’ve noticed the sound is going a little bit techy? 


Yes, we still kept room for  melody, we still had tunes like that but for this kind of festival on  the mainstage, we wanted to do something stronger. I think it worked…


J. Yes it worked perfectly


well it’s difficult to say if it worked if you’re on stage 

J: But i was on the floor….it worked, i can tell you that!


Oh thank you

J: What if your partner in crime was a tune of yours?

Ruben : 

Rodg would be  “Time Has Come” because it has been a big step for  him playing on the mainstage!


 I guess that will be a straight dance floor smasher people can’t stop going crazy on!

Right after that I had to let the guys go and Ruben had to hurry back in the Radio Dome where he worked his magic for the whole night.


We’ve had the pleasure to meet David Gravell a couple of weeks ago and he told us about the upcoming release of another of his signature masterpieces (more will follow in the interview asap) and…

Yes!! The day has come for this monster tune to spread around freely!!!
David Gravell presents his brand new tune “Energy”. The name says it all, a fully energetic kind of track that is already smashing the dancefloors around the world lately, basically, Armin van Buuren is playing it on a regular basis during all his gigs since months! And last night he also introduced it, together with the artist, during the weekly episode of his radio show (ASOT 803)

The track’s title came in when David’s manager, stepping into the studio where the artist was working , listened to it and said it was a very energetic track! So here you go, track title! Simple as that!

So, ready to check this powerful, trance stunner rich in enthralling synth plucks?

Yes? Ok, check it out Here

This will also be included in David Gravell’s upcoming compilation “Discover” … stay tuned for more news soon!


When I knew I had the chance  to interview Ben Nicky during ASOT 800 festival, I got a bit nervous, I had never met him before, and judging by the social medias he seemed to be a kinda rock n’ roll guy, still I was wondering the best way to approach him.
During the night I saw him being interviewed by other journalists, and he looked quite calm and serious,  plus I knew he was fighting a bad flu in those days so I wondered if he was really up for a chat or if the only thing he really wanted was to blow away the crowd with his distinctive sound and then just go to sleep.
When they informed me he was ready for the interview I was just evaluating how to introduce myself in the most quiet possible way, but when we were there, standing in front of each other , suddenly, his opening line was:
Hey! You look like that hot girl from Scary Movie, it’s a compliment!! Take it as a compliment!!
We both laughed at that, and it was suddenly clear that it was going to be a funny meet up!

Oh Dag Yo Photography © 2016

J: thanks a lot for supporting THE BACKSTAGE ACCESS
B: No problem
J: So how you doing lately?
B: I am very good, just very tired, I came from a show in Scotland last night and I haven’t slept …..so kind of tired , touring a lot with my solo show, so it’s great being here and being around friends… for me it’s a really nice change.

J: Are you recovering from your flu?
B: Oh, you did some research (laughs) I was sick into Friday night and today my ears are bit blocked but it’s not gonna get in the way, I’ll still smash it, it’s fine!

J: What does ASOT mean to you?
B: A State of trance is a building block for me as an artist, for my productions, I mean, a lot of people know me for my online character, my persona, my branding, but.. but for my productions, Armin has been very very helpful , you know, for the exposure of my singles on Armada, and even my tracks on Vandit and other labels
J: All the big djs are supporting you
B: Yeah but, I think that Armin and Paul van Dyk are the two that really helped me get to the point I needed and now,  I kinda do my own thing, but I love playing here because I mean Armin always brings everyone together;  it’s a great festival and I love it!
J: Any new stuff coming up?
B: Yes, a new track on Armada actually WAO138, a collab with Paul van Dyk, a remix I’ve done for an hardcore producer ….it’s exciting to remix a different genre too, I do a collab with Coming Soon too, a lot of new stuff, and you know it’s hard cause I am touring so much…..

J: what’s your relationship with social media?
B: Apparently I am the most viral dj on Snapchat and Facebook, well, my videos … the amount of likes against the amount of followers I have is the biggest interaction, someone told me! So I do my own social media and if you see something rad it’s normally me , tho,it’s very hard because I tour so much… but I like to have a really good interaction with my fans to make them feel what they read it’s truthful, without that I would not have stood where i am now.
J. What about your Headfuck brand?
B: Obviously it’s a bit controversial, very rock n’ roll, I‘ve been doing the Headfuck tour around the world but I am concentrating right now on my Ben Nicky Solo show. Especially in the UK we are selling out all my shows, I really appreciate the support, I want to start doing it like a concert bringing vocalists on stage you know… I wanna just do it more in the UK and spread the concept worlwide…It takes time but I am working on it

J: Wow,there’s a lot going on…
B: Indeed, every week a different country, right now I have like 10 gigs in 10 days
J: Is there any place you like to play the most?
B: Mexico and Argentina…and The Netherlands….hahah that’s the number one
J : What do you love to do in your spare time ?
B: I go to the gym as you can see ..haha no, joking, tattooes, as you can see, …it sounds crazy cause I have a very rock star image but when i am at home I just walk the dog ,relax, sleep, just chill, eat good things, go to the cinema…just relaxing things

J: Ok, thanks a lot for your time 
B: and yours.
J: Let’s rock the place now, and see you soon
B: See ya



And the interview saga continues this week with:  

So, during the latest, fantastic edition of our beloved festival ASOT 800 in Utrecht, we also had the pleasure to meet the super talented Ukrainian dj and producer for a nice chat about both his personal and professional life, let’s check out what it is all about 🙂

J: Thanks a lot for supporting THE BACKSTAGE ACCESS

Omnia:  Ok, and we’re right now in the backstage. Thank you so much I really like to see guys like you supporting the industry.

J: What does ASOT means to you?

O:  A lot of things. I think I’ve started producing my own music because of it, back in 2004, I started listening to the radio show, and it really inspired me and I realized that I wanted to make tracks which Armin would have played, so it was like my dream, you know, right now I am here and the dream came true! So i’d say ASOT is a very important part of my career, my music position so yeah, it means a lot.

J. The first time I saw you playing was during ASOT 600 and you totally blew my mind

O: Oh thank you, it was in Den Bosch right?

J: Yes

O: It was pretty special to me too because it was my first show where I was traveling outside my country so playing in places like The Netherlands or Ibiza made me very nervous back then, I was also very young as an artist and I was really excited…but well, I am still excited!!

J. When you make a new track are you ever afraid to play it for the first time in front of a crowd?

O: Yeah, I think almost all producers have the same feeling , because, you know, as far as I am concerned, I always like to do something new, I don’t like to do like a copy and paste of a previous track, I like to experiment with my sound and it means that sometimes you don’t know how it’s gonna be for people, how it is gonna be received, like if they like it or they not really like it, so it’s kinda risky but you know, this is something that pushes you to do many more things in the music production so I think I am always afraid to show my new tracks but I am doing this everytime and it’s a really good feeling and even right now I am really nervous about my set but I will do this.

(Oh yes, he did it folks!! Check out his massive set right here )

J: Where do you see the trance scene going ?

O: Oh I think it’s easier for me, I have my own signature sound and I know which direction I should go, people can recognize my sound which is really cool but I don’t know what to say about the whole industry, so, even tonight we have a psy stage here in Utrecht and we have a 138 stage too, so I think in this moment trance is going in a more uplifting direction, I can’t say I am a big fan of this fast trance honestly, because I’ve always been more progressive and more melodic and maybe more deeper, but I will still do my own thing, because I know what people expect from my sound so, let’s see, I would only say that at the moment it’s really hard to see where the industry is going , the only thing djs and producers can do is to create their own direction, so I am trying to do that ,I am just trying to make my listeners happy I am not thinking in trance or edm terms..I am just doing my own thing

J: And you are damn good at it!

O: hahaha oh thank you, thank you very much!!

J:So let’s talk about your new tune, Why Do You Run?  It has got a huge reaction right?

O: Yes, I’ve just released this new production with Jonny Rose, and it’s been voted as future favorite at A State Of Trance this week

J: Yes, I know and I voted it too!

O. Oh really?? Thank you so much!
And I would also say big big thanks to all my fans, I didn’t expect such a huge reaction it means a lot for me , it is something that helps me keep moving

J: Where do you find the inspiration to create your music?

O. It’s hard to tell…well, you know, I think it’s all about the life style and everything that’s going on with me, I think that inspiration is a kind of filter for musician ,music is your own emotion, you show yourself to the people through your music, I think with my music I try to show what’s going on with me, right now I feel so happy and I think it reflects in my music…in my vibes. Then the ideas just come in my head like melodies and that’s why I always travel with my laptop, cause sometimes I got an idea and I am not in my studio so I can try to fix the melodies that came to me.
Other than that, inspiration can be everything, even my cats, what inspires me today will be something different tomorrow.

J. How do you find the balance between your professional and your private life?

O: I think it was hard when I started my career because it was something new but now it’s ok because It’s my lifestyle, you know I love to do this, I love to create music, I love to travel, to do shows, it inspires me a lot, and all my close friends and my family and of course my wife, they are really supporting me, and my wife understands what’s important for me because if it’s important for me it’s important for her too, but at the same time I always try to find the balance between the work and the family, and it’s not really hard , if you can plan your time, you can plan your life and this becomes really easy.

J: Do you have at the moment any tool or synth in studio that you really like?

O: Sure, I am a big fan of Native Instruments and you know all the melodies in my tracks are usually made with Massive, I am really good with this instrument and it helps me a lot: thanks to Native Instruments (laughs),yes but I am using a lot of things like Silenth1, Nexus, Spyre, Z3ta+ , products from Spectrasonics, stuff from Rob Papen. And for FX and mixing I usually use the ‘Waves’ audio plugins! They have a really big choice of tools to work with sound! For mastering it’s almost always iZotope Ozone plugin!

J.Ok I think I have to let you go for now, but thanks again for your time and see you soon on the dance floor!

O: Thank you! see you soon.


Last Saturday, during ASOT 800 in Utrecht, The Netherlands, I’ve had the honor to meet the super talented dj and producer Estiva, he was so nice to join us right after his epic set, for a very interesting chat!

J: Thanks a lot for supporting The Backstage Access
E: Yes, of course, thanks for having me

J:The first thing I would like to ask you is: What does ASOT mean to you?
E: Means to me? Well the first time I was listening to ASOT, no, actually, let’s go way back, when I was 15 ,16 ,or something, I used to listen to ASOT radio show,and it kinda got me into producing music so at some point I was actually releasing music on labels, and one of the first songs, was picked up by Armin van Buuren and he played into ASOT so while I was tuned in one night,  I heard my song and I was like: hang on, this song is one of my songs, so Armin was playing my song, can you imagine it? Like ,the thrill for me was insane!
So that was my first experience and actually got hooked from that moment on.It’s really special for me,  you know, the music like the emotions and the beats…I like the groovy beats,not too fast, I do like the psy trance stuff like for an hour or so and then I’d go back to something else, so like the whole trance jam is really interesting to me.

J: I know you are cooperating with Ruben de Ronde and his label Statement, so any new projects going on?
E: Yes, so…first things first, about one year ago, I was kinda lost and didn’t know which direction I wanted to go with my music, so I told to myself, ok let’s just have fun again, try to create music that I really like,not for the labels, not for the fans, just whatever goes up in my mind, so I made a few tracks, sent them to Ruben, he said Yes, I love that, so I released some tracks with Ruben, got to know him a little bit more and now we  actually have written a tune together, with Rodg as well, so that’s a collaboration and I think he premiered it tonight (during ASOT 800 in Utrecht) so I am proud of that, that’s great! 

(The tune is called “Intergalactic” and you can find it in the new album “Togetherr” that you can pre order here)

J: Is there a track that represents you right in this moment?
E: It’s kinda hard, I would like to say that my last production is my best production, but it’s a very tough question to answer because I like to see the whole picture, tonight I’ve played 60 minutes of my own music, so looking back, that’s me, I’d say it captures my vibe, it’s a combination of a good groove and an epic melody maybe.

J: Any festival on your bucket list?
E: Well, does it get any better than ASOT?
I mean next year, on my bucket list, there’s ASOT850!Let’s stick to that!

One of the cutest moment in the famous Radio Dome…family time for Estiva!!

J. What do you like to do in your spare time if you have any?
E: I like cycling, soccer, football, I actually been to Italy too in Pisa, Tuscany ,with my bike,hit the mountains with my bike so that’s what I like to do, but really, other than that, if I have some time, I just go ahead and produce.

J: Where do you find the inspiration to create your tunes?
E: Nights like these are very inspiring to me because you feel the energy so when I get back home  home tomorrow morning I am like  I need to go to sleep but I actually have so many ideas in my head, I need to go to the studio as well so I won’t just sleep…so that’s where I find the inspiration.

J: Do you have a favorite plugin or studio tool at the moment?
E:I write my tunes with FL studio since I’ve started so I would definitely recommend it to anyone. I use also Spyre, it’s a great synth and like it a lot.

J: Ok thank you so much for your time and let’s catch up soon.
E: You are welcome, thank you for having me 


If just like us, you couldn’t get enough of his stunning set at ASOT800, you can listen to it again here



And for all of you always looking for new stuff, we have a very special treat:

Estiva’s new EP,  Barba/Tarmac  is OUT NOW on Statement!  so hurry up and grab it here:

Barba / Tarmac

Download & Listen : here








The latest ASOT edition just amazed us all with its majestic show, the 800th episode’s celebration was absolutely insane, and we bet you are looking forward to the next edition already!!

Whether you were with us at Jaarbeurs during that incredible night or you were just spending a cozy night on your couch following the streaming, the main thing is we were all united for A State Of Trance, because it’s part of our lives and our stories and something we could not really live without.

It’s like the whole trance world is connected for a unique night, a one of a kind experience which aims to unite us all; ASOT means a lot to us, right? Well… we’ve had a chat with some of the artists performing there and  found out what ASOT means to them (and a lot of other interesting things which will follow asap in their interviews, during the next days)




Well the first time I was listening to ASOT, no, actually, let’s go way back, when I was 15 ,16 or something, I used to listen to ASOT radio show, and it kinda got me into producing music’s at some point I was actually releasing music on labels, and one of the first songs, was picked up by Armin van Buuren and he played it into ASOT so at some point I was listening to it and I heard my song and I was like: hang on, this is one of my songs, so…. Armin was playing my song!!! Can you imagine it?… Like the thrill, for me it was insane!
So that was my first experience and actually got hooked from that moment on. ASOT It’s really special for me, the music, the beats, trance means a lot to me.


Giuseppe:  It’s kinda of an institution, you know, one of those BIG things that have to be part of your life if you are a trance artist, you gotta play here
Richard: It’s like I milestone. If I was Armin I would end it at 1000 because it’s a really good number, if you get to 1000 then you get to do 10000 so that’s not possible ( but I am not gonna say that to Armin btw…- laughs-)


To me it means A lot of things. I think I’ve started producing my music because of it, back in 2004, I started listening to the radio show, and it really inspired me and I realized that I wanted to make tracks which Armin would have played, so it was like my dream, you know, right now I am here and the dream came true! So i’d say ASOT is a very important part of my career, my music position so yeah, it means a lot.


Rodg: For me, it kinda changed, you know, I’ve been playing here for the 3rd time, before that I was a visitor, it was about the music, you heard new music, a lot of productions, you know it was just an amazing festival, but now, I am here as a dj, playing the record I made in the studio is more about I am gathering people, bringing people together to enjoy music all together and especially for his event they come from all over the world, you see flags from countries you can’t even think of, that’s pretty special like, we, with our music bring these people together, that’s exactly what ASOT mean to me.

Ruben : I think the most important thing about ASOT is unifying, like bringing people together, the media are trying to divide everyone nowadays, try to scare people and make sure that everybody hates each other like you need to hate that person because he does that and so…I think with ASOT or with music in general we are trying to do something different, we are trying to bring people together so that a perfect example is when you see people with palestinian flag or israeli flag and they can dance together like they are here for the music not for any political reasons….that’s the most important thing about it,yeah I know it’s a bit deep but it is what it is 🙂


I think it’s already for years and years the biggest trance festival and it’s the party to be, it’s always something to look forward to, every time you get invited to play here, it’s like being a baby in a candy store! it’s awesome to be here, awesome crowd, everybody is so excited so it’s just very nice to play here!!


My very first ASOT was with my friends and I remember that I was in the car listening to the music and then I thought it was different from everything else  it was little bit magical, special, I love that everyone is different , everyone is loving the music, everyone is uniting and coming together to celebrate , there are a lot of other festival but this particular one is so nice and unique, I haven’t seen anything like this before.


It’s a building block for me as an artist, and for my productions, I mean a lot of people know me for my persona, my branding, but ASOT is very good for the exposure of my singles too Armin and Armada always supported my tracks and helped me get me to the point I am now,I love playing here because Armin brings everyone together and it’s a great festival.


It’ s a very exciting event to be, I meet all the trance family people , lot of people I work with…It may sounds like a cliché but trance is kinda a way of life for me , it’s part of my daily life.

When all is said and done, we do hope your ASOT experience has been great, and just stay tuned for the full interviews with each of these amazing artists!!

So… now we are curious, what does ASOT mean to YOU??

Up Close And Personal With Kimberly Hale


Hi everyone!

Today I got a pretty special treat for you: an exclusive interview with one of the most talented songwriters/singers of the trance scene, I am happy to introduce you to the lovely Kimberly Hale from the United Kingdom!

Let me tell you that her angelic voice and magical lyrics will charm you and bring you to another place, she will cast a spell on you…you have been warned!!


With a string of emotionally and stylistically diverse releases and compilations through multiple dance labels including Statement!, Armada, Amsterdam Trance, Raz Nitzan, Sir Adrian, Discover Group, EMI, and more…Kimberly’s tunes and collabs have been supported on worldwide radio shows and DJ sets by the top international superstars Armin van Buuren, Cosmic Gate, Paul Oakenfold, Max Graham, Andy Moor, Lange, Judge Jules, Simon Patterson, Marcus Schossow, Nifra, Ruben de Ronde, Susana, Audrey Gallagher, Jes, Beat Service, Pedro del Mar, Omnia and many more…

So, let’s welcome Kimberly on TheBackstageAccess!!


K: Thank you so much for asking me to be here with you and your readers, Jess!  



J: Could you tell us how and when did it all start in the music industry for you?




K: I do distinctly remember sitting in the bathtub when I was 3 years old and saying to myself that i was going to be female Elvis when I grew up. haha My parents watched a lot of Elvis movies in the Bible belt.  After that it was piano lessons and southern baptist church choir at quite a young age.  I think for a lot of us, music is a lifetime path! 



J: What inspires you when creating a tune ?


K: A few times it has been a choice between having a nervous breakdown or writing a song.  Crises are very fertile moments for songs and some of my best received tunes were written in those moments.  Plus I saved some money that would have been spent on therapy!   haha 


Otherwise, I would say when writing on piano I need a lot more internal and external inspiration — life events and strong feelings, poetry, or listening to so much of the great music we have in this genre for example.   


Writing over tracks, it seems to be a lot more instinctive and things just sort of come to me out of the air.  


J: a couple  of my favorite tunes you wrote are Moment Of Truth and  All In, could you tell us something about them?


K: Thank you Jess!  It’s funny you single those tracks out as they were the first vocals I wrote over tracks in a very long time!  Most of the other releases I have had recently have been me starting with nothing but my piano and having to write the structure/chord progression as well.  


Suddenly, not only did I get the tracks given to me first, but super fun and inspiring tracks that made my job really easy!  They both came out very effortlessly and I freestyled it completely.    


“Moment Of Truth” was such a blast and inspired me rhythmically.  

“All In” was so melodically developed that I felt the only choice I had was to follow and dance around with Ruben’s lead which made it very simple to write!  The lyrics and words i did not think about at all either.  They literally wrote themselves. i edited slightly in the honing stage. 



J: Are there any artist you would love to cooperate with?


K: I don’t know why I always feel coy when someone asks me this question!  It’s not like you’re asking me something naughty!  hahaha 



J: If you were not a singer what else would you like to do?


K: There have been times when I had so many friends coming to me for counselling that I could have been a full-time therapist/ muse!  I’m an enfp so that is definitely in the skill set! I really want to write a novel one day!  


J: For those who are not familiar with the whole creative process, could you explain a bit how it works for you when you are asked to write something ?


K: It’s definitely a different process when I am writing on piano or over a track as I mentioned earlier.  But one thing is that for both, a physical warmup is very important and I always seem to do better when I stretch out completely like I am about to pole vault or something like this. 😉   I think any tension in the body can inhibit flow!   


I can write songs quickly but I generally spend a couple weeks at least perfecting and honing as they always get better when I do that.  I am normally not happy with the lyrics unless they seem to have multiple meanings and I have three points of view which I typically like to incorporate.  I test each song this way to make sure they hold up most of the time.  I’m not sure if anyone else notices it or not, but it’s important to me! haha 



J: The most important tune to you so far and why?


K: It’s really hard to say on that one as many of my tunes have been instrumental in leading me to another place.  Sometimes you only get one opportunity to move a certain direction and each of those markers has been a moment of truth to me 🙂


J: What do you love to do in your spare time ?  

K: socialising with friends, health and fitness,  i’ve been taking ballet classes lately too. 




J: Your relationship with social media and your fans ?


K:I really wish I could figure out a way to better reach the fans on Facebook.  Since they started with the algorithms, i think it’s really made everything feel so stagnant.  I’ve thought about sending smoke signals!   haha I feel pretty sad and dejected in there now!  And most of all, I feel really terrible that it’s so hard to reach the fans.  :'(  At least Armada music and A State of Trance posted some videos of our music lately which did receive a nice response so I was grateful for that.  


On a bright note, my instagram seems to be doing better a tiny bit and I’m finding the nature of the site a lot more calming, fun and positive than Facebook at the moment.  



J: Describe yourself in 3 words 🙂


K: Perceptive







J: Please leave a message for TheBackstageAccess readers 🙂


K:  Thank you for loving and caring so much about the music!  Your energy is what makes this all complete!  Thanks for giving us the space on this earth and the constant support to create heavenly meaningful things!  Lots of Love!   Kimberly Xox  



Photo courtesy: Asia Werbel




 In an attempt to both raise awareness and actively protect the hearing of music lovers around the world, Armada Music and Alpine Hearing Protection have joined forces. Their collaboration kicks off with a brand-new earplug. The Alpine PartyPlug Armada Edition is not only available for purchase online in the Armada Music Shop, but will also be sold at A State Of Trance 800 Utrecht, the biggest Trance event in the world.


The decision to join forces was a definite no-brainer. Recent numbers show that in the Netherlands alone, over 20,000 young adults damage their hearing every year. The main cause of this problem is that those very same people neglect to protect their hearing even though the volume at an average concert or festival could cause irreparable hearing damage within 15 minutes of exposure.


Alpine Hearing Protection: “We’re glad that people have become more aware of the dangers and risks of loud music, but we still have a long way to go. People often think earplugs take away from the experience, even though this has been a thing of the past for a long time now. In fact, the Alpine PartyPlug Armada Edition comes with a special acoustic filter, which not only upholds the quality of the music, but also makes it so much easier to indulge in normal conversation without having to guess what the other person is saying. There are simply no cons to wearing hearing protection.”


With their earplugs, Armada Music and Alpine Hearing Protection hope to decrease the amount of people suffering from hearing loss due to insufficient protection. Now it’s up to the people themselves to take matters into their own hands.


For more information about Alpine or hearing protection in general, please visit www.alpine.eu.


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