Does Ferry Corsten's new album capture all of the promise, uncertainty and freedom the WKND has to offer?
A Day Without Rain gently eases listeners into the album with tender and subtle progressive notes gracefully hijacking the sound stage. With the title dictating the context, the track proves ideal for a Friday afternoon, shielding you from the noisy train ride home with gingerly layered trance tones harmonically reverberating off soothing vocals. Like many tracks following, including Walk On Air, it courts the listener before seducing them with an upbeat tempo that does well to intensify underlying emotional appeal.
Corsten manipulates tempo and rhythm effortlessly, using the contrast to highlight emotional difference, moving people from one emotion to its antithetical other. Ain't Not Stoppin' and Not Coming Down are sublime examples, with the latter slowing the beat right down till it's just the tranquil notes of a piano providing the backdrop to artist Betsie Larkan's voice. As she hits notes that pierce the instrument-scarce melody, listeners indulge in the notion of despair, only to progress onto themes of hope and ascension as the track quickens.
"Floating through the sky again
Will I ever find my way?
Maybe that's the point of it
Learning that the road don't end
To look around
Enjoy the sound
And take the beauty in"
--Ferry Corsten's Aint No Stoppin'
His compilation with trance extraordinaire Armin Van Buuren is an exercise in elevation, with each trance note cyclically being toppled by the one following, constantly building up in foreplay. Called Brute, it's is an ode to the sacrifice paid rather than the pay off, and does its duties of inducing party-crazed elation.
This cultivated jubilation reaches its peak with the titular track WKND and Check It Out. Check It Out is an unapologetic party anthem that borrows Lil' John-esque brutality to climax with the aid of club-worthy bass and electrifying trance notes. This is the kind of song that gets the dreary spectators sitting down at clubs up, making a fool of themselves as they dance without caring.
Corsten's WKND is a welcome addition to any music collection, with its sombre melodies tastefully contrasting with uplifting trance anthems. His sense of timing is astute, nailing beats down in a fashion that never feels tacky. I'm not only buying this track, but a ticket to his next show too.