Trance tune by German producer and artist Andre Tanneberger, aka ATB.
9pm will always hold a special place in my heart as the one piece of music that epitomises the fickle tastes of the mob. Never in my lifetime has a tune gone from being the most banging, requested, coolest tune in every trance club in Europe to being the most hated, uncool, sellout track in history.
Flashback to early Spring 1999. The trance revolution had swept all before it in the clubbing underground and the genre, with Sheffield superclub Gatecrasher as its spearhead, was about to cross over into the mainstream in a huge way. There were a lot of amazing tunes about at the time, including Lost Tribe's Gamemaster, York's The Awakening and Veracocha's Carte Blanche. But none had entire cities of people in hands-in-the-air euphoria more than the pitch-bending genius of ATB's 9pm. At Gatecrasher's Spring Ball at Lotherton Hall near Leeds, it was dropped six times. Six times in one night.
It had to be a huge hit. And sure enough, on its release in June 1999, it became the first trance tune to reach the Number One slot in the British Top 40. It then went on a nosedive so fierce that the Red Baron himself couldn't have pulled out in time. 9pm was thrown out of every respectable DJ's record box and left to be played out endlessly on commercial radio and in white-sock-and-medallion clubs across the country. Andre himself didn't help matters by releasing the God-awful follow-up Don't Stop, which was about as trance-by-numbers as it is possible to be. The success of 9pm also spawned a thousand terrible pop-trance imitations which took the entire genre to the dogs and allowed the complete wank that is hard house to begin to dominate British clubbing.
That said, I now have come full circle and like the tune again. If you loved it, hated it and now want to love it again, why not try the Matt Darey mix - it's entirely banging and entirely non-cheesy. So there is a happy ending after all. Andre, we salute you.