Rank 1 @ Giant Wednesday
They’re one of Europe’s most established and respected dance acts. Their debut release, ‘Airwave’ was the first Dutch record ever to hit the 1 position in the European dance charts and went Top 10 in the UK. Over the last 8 years, they have continued to pack the record boxes of world’s A-list spinners with floor-monsters like ‘Symsonic’, ‘Such is Life’, ‘Breathing’ & ‘Life Less Ordinary’… Performing to tens of thousands of dance fans every week, they play at some of the biggest dance events in the world. Meet Piet Bervoets & Benno de Goeij - better known as Rank 1!
Piet’s production career started in 1995, when he banded together with another producer Carlo Resoort to produce the proto tech-trance hit, ‘The Silmarillia’. He went on to create the massively infectious ‘Instant Moments’ in 1997 under the pseudonym R.O.O.S. Benno meanwhile collaborated with the at-the-time unknown Tiësto as Kamaya Painters, producing the scene-setting trance classic, ‘Endless Wave’. He was also behind the pan-European hit, ‘Deadline’ under the name Dutch Force.
A chance meeting at a party in the spring of 1997 set Piet & Benno down the road to Rank 1. Introduced by a mutual friend, they spent the entire night discussing their passion for electronic music. Whilst Benno had no formal production training, Piet saw that his classical music background had given him a natural ear for perfect melodies and powerful riffs.
This was quickly born out by their debut collaboration… As the Dutch trance tidal wave began to rise over Europe, the pair found themselves perfectly positioned to ride it. Championed by fellow Netherlanders Armin van Buuren, Tiësto and Ferry Corsten, the stadium-sized sound of ‘Airwave’ exploded across the continent in 1999. By the following year the track had been released in over 40 countries around the world and cemented the duo’s place in Trance music’s hall of fame.
Working at roughly one release a year, Rank 1 followed-up with ‘Such is Life’ (2001), ‘Awakening’ (taken from their debut album ‘Symsonic’ - both 2002), ‘It’s up To You’ (2003), ‘Beats At Rank-1 Dotcom’ (2004) and ‘Opus’/’Top Gear’ (2005). After a year’s production break they returned to the fray in 07 with two monster collaborations: ‘Life Less Ordinary’ (in tandem with Alex Morph) and the ‘This World is Watching Me’, co-produced with Armin.
Rank 1 also has an estimable remix-ography to their name. Freddy Mercury, Ferry Corsten, Push, Cygnus X, Delirium, Cosmic Gate, Marcel Woods, Mr Sam, Ronald van Gelderen, Angelic and Ayumi Hamasaki have all been given Rank 1’s studio re-touch.
The outfit now has two distinct branches. Benno takes care of all the Rank 1’s production elements. He is currently shaping their new artist album and has just co-produced the new Armin van Buuren’s long-player ‘Imagine’. Piet meanwhile has the role of globe-trotting DJ, spinning at clubbing tent-pole events like Castle Dance in Russia & Dance Valley in his native Holland, as well as regular Ibiza sessions.
Over recent years, Rank 1 have become increasingly about the LIVE performance. They became the first act to perform at Sensation and famously forced the closure of doors when 25,000 clubbers packed-out Trance Energy’s main arena to see them play. They have continued to thrill crowds at some Europe’s best-known festivals including Mystery Land & Germany’s Nature One.