When DJmag catches up with Ferry Corsten, he is in the middle of yet another epic US tour. Since hitting San Francisco and LA, he is fresh from last night's show in Phoenix and just about to hop on a plane to Boston, so it's no wonder he is feeling a bit puffed out. But, as always, he is polite and cheerful: a delight to chat to.
"It can be a bit exhausting. Always at airports and waiting, checking in baggage and security. But it's cool," he grins over his mobile phone on the way to the airport.
This, of course, is by no means a complaint (more an observation). Ferry is clearly in high spirits (even if a bit rough round the edges). Now on his second US tour of the year, he has also played the Creamfields tour and across Asia and South America. Even at this stage in his career, he's discovering new things, stepping into uncharted territory and enjoying every minute of it.
"One of the unexpected highlights was when I played in Syria," he explains. "I didn't really know what to expect. They rarely have DJs play over there, so it was on a tennis court with a clubhouse next to it in the middle of the desert. It was great. The crowd was chaotic - in a good way."
Playing to music lovers where the number of club events fall drastically short of somewhere like Europe or the UK, for example, is always destined to garner a rapturous response but this one made Ferry's year, he says.
"People are clearly very aware of what is going on in dance music there," he says. "They know it, but nobody ever goes to their country to play it, so when someone does "
While Ferry is still very much willing to lay down the sort of up-tempo big-room trance vibes he is best known for, a recent engagement with the deeper, more melodic side of house music has lead him to slot the odd 128/130BPM record into his sets.
"House music can be warmer, groovier and still have a party feel," says Ferry. "Trance is much more melodic, so it is great that those two genres are really meeting each other at the moment. It creates a lot of space for everybody."
With acts such as Swedish House Mafia and Deadmau5 mashing up electro and techno with trance and house, designed for no other purpose than to please gargantuan crowds in stadiums and superclubs, Ferry feels this is the perfect time to play about with different styles, blur genre barriers while keeping his DJ sets fresh, as well as bringing the fans what they want.
"I have always been a supporter of mixing genres or not having any boundaries in the first place," he explains. "Just as long as you give people what they want in the end."
A greater willingness to feed more gradual, slow-burning vibes into the mix has been spurred by the recent production of part two of his 'Once Upon A Night' mix series; a release that, as the title suggests, sets out to take the listener on a musical journey.
"What I used to play was uptempo stuff. I never used to listen to tracks at a slower speed, but once you learn to tell the story on CD, you start looking at it strategically," he says. "There are always people that want to hear the old story, the big hits of the moment, the old classics and the well-known Ferry Corsten tracks, so it is a case of playing all of it without stepping away from what people expect."