Whether the three years since Craig Connelly album-debuted with ‘One Second Closer’ feels long or brief is almost academic. For Craig himself the duration’s provided the ultimate in transformative phases, seeing him punch up from promising name to major contender. With the arenas and festivals getting bigger and his music drawing evermore DJ air & set time though comes ever-greater expectation.
That brings us to the ultimate of qualifiers: ‘A Sharper Edge’. Following the 8-million-Spotify-streams-and-counting ‘One Second Closer’, the album is another implicitly titled collection, alluding to Craig’s unlike-any-other approach.
At the core of its production lies something that is the result of - if not quite soul searching by Craig, then certainly some introspection. Whilst other artists root their album biases in the instrumental or the vocal, or a particular stylistic bandwidth, Craig composed his down four very specific thematic lines.
“I wanted to try a non-traditional approach to this album, says the Manchester born-and-based DJ, and I thought a little pre-production mental exercise might give me some insight. So before ‘A Sharper Edge’s day-one, I crunched what seemed important in my life and more and more four words kept popping back. So when I sat down to compose each track, I tried to bring one of the four - Destiny, Energy, Travel or Optimism to my foreground and subsequently channel it into that piece of music. Whilst all the tracks represent a more radio or club focused sound, every one was designed to have its own story - regardless of whether it has lyrics or not. Even the instrumentals were written with the intention of being anchored in a strong human emotion or feeling.”
That ‘A Sharper Edge’ spans trance’s stylistic spectrum and breaks down evenly into seven vocals and seven instrumentals is significantly less by design and more by the innateness of Craig’s process. While never absolute, the tracks’ titles offer prime indicators of which theme drove them.
Including two special mixes!
01. Craig Connelly - Sonic Grey
02. Craig Connelly featuring Tara Louise - Time Machine
03. Craig Connelly - California
01. Craig Connelly featuring Karina Ramage - Life Half Lived
02. Craig Connelly - Earth Dimension C-137
03. Craig Connelly featuring Natalie Major - Watch The Way You Move
04. Craig Connelly - Everyone Loves A Triplet
01. Craig Connelly featuring Tara Louise - What Are You Waiting For
02. Craig Connelly & Peter Steele - The Fire
03. Craig Connelly featuring Alex Holmes - Anything Like You
04. Craig Connelly & Factor B - Tranceatlantic
01. Craig Connelly & Siskin - All For Love
02. Craig Connelly & Will Rees - Inhale
03. Craig Connelly featuring Cammie Robinson - Run Away
04. Craig Connelly featuring Karina Ramage - Life Half Lived (Club Mix)
05. Craig Connelly featuring Tara Louise - Time Machine (Paul Denton Remix)