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I loved Trance Central 3 back in May and despite all the fun we’ve had in the meantime, in London, Ibiza and Amsterdam, I was really looking forward to another helping of old-school trance at the Oxford Art Factory. My only nagging worry was whether the magic could be repeated. The bill was largely the same as last time, with Man Lie replacing Binary Finary behind the decks, as well as taking care of the amazing laser display.

I’d heard Man Lie once before, at the Transience Gatecrasher-themed event, but had to leave before he really got into his stride. I’d noted then that I’d like to hear him again – so this was my chance. And because one of the other DJs had dropped out at short notice, Man had nearly two hours to entertain us as the club filled up. Dropping classics like Three Drives On A Vinyl – Greece 2000, Energy 52 – Café del Mar and DJ Tiësto – Lethal Industry, he was setting the tone for the night perfectly. And yet again the laser display was out of this world.

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Although the club filled up nicely during Man’s set, it didn’t get anywhere near as busy at it had been at the previous instalment of Trance Central. This meant that the intense, warm vibe of May’s event was not fully replicated and although it was a very friendly event, it didn’t have quite the same level of excitement as before. Andrew James took over from Man Lie and played a great set, including tunes like Paul van Dyk – For an Angel, B.B.E. – Seven Days And One Week and Ferry Corsten – Punk.

Next up was Nik Fish, whose set we had missed back in May. Personally, I didn’t like the style of music he played, although plenty of the clubbers present clearly did enjoy his set. But I was pleased when the time came for John Ferris to play – I knew I’d enjoyed his music last time. Sure enough, he played a great mix of well-known and lesser-known classics, including Rank 1 – Airwave, John O’Callaghan – Find Yourself, Armin van Buuren – Communication and System F – Out Of The Blue.

At 3am, it was DJ Ange‘s turn and she delivered another great set of old-school trance, including tracks like John O’Callaghan – Big Sky, DJ Tiësto – Flight 643 and Armin van Buuren – Control Freak (Sander van Doorn Remix). We had an appointment with the night bus to take us home, otherwise we would have been keen to hear Toby Matrix but the word on the street is that he played a great set to close the night.

This was a good night even if it failed to live up to the brilliance of the previous Trance Central – but that was such a high standard that this should not be interpreted too critically. The venue, lasers, music and crowd were all fantastic and only the numbers meant that the vibe was not repeated from last time. Bring on Trance Central 5 and another night of proper trance in a proper nightclub setting!

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