Review: Rapid Eye – Circa Forever (Sean Tyas Remix)
By Spectral on 11 September 2019
By the time you’ll be reading these lines, this one has already been played and supported by e-v-e-r-y-o-n-e on the scene, both in sets and on stages, not to mention instantly topping the Beatport Trance top 100. Now, depending on your familiarity and, likely, age, you will probably be asking yourself one of two questions: Why would I bother reading one more guy touting what’s already a monstrous hit? –OR- who is this random Rapid-Eye dude, who managed to get a Tyas remix outta the blue? I’ll get to the first part, later, but first let’s talk ‘Rapid Eye’ and ‘Circa Forever’.
Rapid Eye was a joint project of British producers Tim Stark and Steve Helstrip. If that last one rings a bell, it’s because he is occasionally known as the legendary The Thrillseekers. Alongside a few other aliases for the duo, this project was active from THE golden year of Trance, 1999 (fight me), to 2004, representing to me what a Thrillseekers-inspired production would sound like with a bit of extra spice and umph, and their original productions and remixes were some of my favorite, unapologetic melodic pieces of the time, and none more so than than 2002’s Circa Forever. Let us appreciate the fact that today, we as Trance music listeners, can feel actual organic nostalgia for tunes that are 17 years old and more.
The track had several high-profile producers give their twist over the years, including the Rapid Eye crew themselves, but in case the modern Sean Tyas take is your first hint of this classic, then this paragraph will be your homework, friend: Make sure you listen to at least these two versions -
Chillseeking mix - This is the chillout version, and to me was actually the first version I was really hooked on. It somehow feels much longer than its 7:08 runtime, and just encapsulates everything about Trance without a single kick, clap, or hat. The familiar lead synth is replaced by an acoustic guitar to provide an oddly different vibe to the same anthem. This one set the mood for me many a time when I needed either relaxation, sleep or romance.
Rapid Eye’s R.E. Mix - This is the mothership, the one considered, to this day, to be the “Canon” version. Containing most of the elements so recognizable within - The trademark kick/clap combo, the introductory midbass riff, the long build up to the melodic crescendo and that instantly recognizable, unique lead riff that’s essentially preserved entirely even in the Tyas remix.
And so we get to our modern take; Sean likely experienced what many of us do on occasion: Recognizing such an iconic achievement in Trance history, you can’t help but appreciate the classic, while yearning to have it translated to modern means, to your own sound, so it can all boil down to ravers going crazy, equally appreciating the music for what it is, as well as feeling the rush of nostalgia bubbling through their guts.
The Sean Tyas remix goes full-drive, sacrificing part of the hardness of some of his productions in the last few years, to give us what has become his trademark blend of midbass rolls, driving sound-effects and punchy percussion. Equally recognizable, the structure of the R.E. mix is pretty much preserved in the track, as well as most pad, pluck and lead riffs, leaving no doubt as to where the track came from, nor who laid his hands on it. Sean spun his magic on the climax, with some twists on the bassline and an added arpeggio, contributing to the track’s drive an extra 10%. Hitting at the time-honored 140BPM, feel free to even speed this one up and watch the floor go wild.
‘Circa Forever (Sean Tyas Remix)’ out now on Armada Captivating!