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Jon Cocco

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    animals, ascension, awareness, compassion, creating, dancing, developing, dogs, creativity, eco-friendly, energy matches, evolution, exercise, filmmaking, happiness, healthy (plant-based) food, higher vibration, imagination, love, meditation, mindfulness, movement, music, nature, positive experiences, special connections, traveling, peace, water, yoga

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  1. K.O.B. - Identity Mash

    I browsed this thread in June and was surprised to see so few reviews. Identify Mash is the best Goa-influenced album I've heard in 2017 to date and the year is almost over! The album is wildly creative and inventive, energetic, dark, complex and UNCONVENTIONAL, mechanically infectious and yet melodic -- the album starts off good and gets increasingly catchy. Before this released (I missed the Promo thread) I was wondering when we'd get a new visionary work of art from Jannis considering four years had past since the last Filteria album... feels strange -- it doesn't feel like FOUR YEARS has passed since Lost in the Wild released in 2013. It's almost 2018. Time seems to be escaping us with each year that passes. As the album progresses, Jannis releases some powerful fireballs with nothing but strong numbers all around. Each track has so much distinct elements going on that each time I return to hearing Identity Mash, it feels somewhat new to me. It's certainly refreshing, even when compared to previous KOB songs. The artist has evolved Filteria and now he's evolved KOB, both in good ways I feel. It's just too bad that the album's been overlooked by the general Goa/Psy Trance community on here. I'm hoping more people become aware of it as the year(s) progress, and whether those years even feel like years when they do pass. 9/10
  2. Good album.. It's fairly dark, atmospheric, and moody, and unique. I'm glad it's not all ambient. I tend to gravitate towards music with beats. Even the tribally drums early in help to liven the music for me. I don't mind ambient introductions and find them good here. I do miss your more uplifting, mid-tempo work showcased on previous album. This is an interesting excursion into something also creative and different. Thanks producing quality visionary albums!
  3. Beautiful album full of heart and feeling, spirit and depth, vision and ingenuity.
  4. PharaOm - Tesseract

    First time hearing this now. I must say wow, what pleasant surprise. Tesseract is dark, mystical, fantasy-oriented, atmospheric, imaginative, and encompasses a healthy amount of catchy sound/melody work. It's a beautiful release with moments of power, sadness, inspiration, love, strength and freedom. The songs are never too long or drawn out, but tight! Stream the full thing here. It's free to download thanks to Ektoplazm. Download link: http://www.ektoplazm.com/free-music/pharaom-tesseract
  5. The full album is now available to stream on YouTube! I heard it in its entirety. At this moment, I think this is the first GREAT goa album by a main artist of 2017. https://youtu.be/_tTrr8495Hw Suntrip Order Page http://suntriprecords.com/release/cat/SUNCD46/
  6. VA - Inti (Suntrip Records)

    V/A - Inti Suntrip Records My initial review disappeared when I went to update it. 1. Ovnimoon - Invocation starts interesting with cool atmospheric FX. The music begins to drag by the end of the second or early third minute. Fortunately at 4:27 it breaks out. The song is revived. The second act is an improvement, though for a Goa song, the overall whole feels fairly progressive-influenced. The track finishes off with a nice climax. Hmmm.. This felt too safe to my ears. I enjoyed the energetic (energy boost) moments but as a whole, the song lacks depth and feels a bit too long. On the other hand, it's smooth and digestible, a more mainstream-friendly approach to Goa with less of an exploratory element. In that sense, it will probably sound great on the dance floor. B 2. Triquetra - Renkinjutsu is more aggressive, acidic, psychedelic, and dark. The skipping "accent" FX are great, so catchy! There's an exciting climax at 5:19. The structuring of the song is fairly simple. In other words, layers come and go unlike the song morphing into what seems like other songs or rather evolutions to the degree of say Filteria, Morphic Resonance, etc. But it's tight and gripping throughout. This is one of my favorite tracks on the album and of 2017. Great work! A- 3. Jagoa - Perverse Polymorph starts promising with dark atmosphere and synths. The first minute is intriguing. It seems like things are about to pick up. Instead however, the song grows repetitive until 2:35 where the rhythm changes up. The song would have benefited from this a minute back. What is it with these drawn out segments? A fresh part arrives from 3:39 to 3:53, but is quickly off-set by an annoying effect that sounds like the music is being pulled down. I found that distracting and unnecessary. Things improve at 5:00 until the energy retracts at 5:40. *Sigh...* This song could have taken off numerous times. In the end, the parts are stronger than the whole. As my girlfriend said: "The song did nothing to impress me." B- 4. Morphic Resonance - Varese Dream showcases a moody, atmospheric, and darkly melodic first two minute opening. It's very good and I hope that the next album has moody/atmospheric elements like this. The second act incorporates dynamic segments and variety. The music isn't too intense, though I wish the opening melody returned like a chorus at some point with new work built on top of it. The artist allows the music to breathe between climaxes, something Filteria learned from but didn't seem to perfect until his third album in 2009 via Daze of Our Lives. Speaking of climaxes, there are two in the last act. Is the second climax at 8:33 just a bit too much?, or too close to the previous climax? Maybe it's the rolling synth. Something just seems too much or crammed in regarding the overall sound or placement of the finale considering all other segments flowed so well. Few nitpicks aside, this is strong, sleek, and edgy track. Well done. A- 5. Triquetra - Destroying Dinausor is another tight song by the artists of #2 (not even gonna try to pronounce that). The atmospheric opening is warm and euphoric, very catchy and intriguing. Although the second act (earlier on) could have developed a little more, a mechanical synth varied it up, complimenting the rhythmic design. There is a transition breathing space of sorts (since the beat remains) at around 4:52. The music breaks out a minute later, igniting a flavorful and exciting final act. MR's song was obviously more dynamic with twists and turns, but I loved the overall sound, mixing, and melody work here that gave me more feels. That said, I think the artists' previous song is stronger or at least it's punchier via stands out more (comparatively speaking), but I really like the less intense approach, and (like I said) the warmer sound/melody design here. Great track! B+ 6. Celestial Intelligence - Distorted Visions starts mysterious and mystical, catchy before a typical melody arrangement (segment) arrives. Please avoid typical stuff. The middle, more complex and mechanical (robotic) segment is good (finally breaking away from the typical), and the last act is great, very catchy! The song could have ended slightly sooner but I love the less layered Goa tune part just before that. Find a way to end the song there, so it doesn't spend forever chilling down but doesn't feel about either. This artist has done better numerous times before. This is a good track with some really great work. B+ 7. Mindsphere - Harmonic Garden starts great before getting too busy sounding IMO. The middle act has some very nice tunes that stand out, great arrangement, sounds, etc. Then things sound over layered to my ears again. There's a catchy, harmonious tune in the last act that adds focus, euphoria. Keep the melody arrangement juicy and interesting! This is a pretty good track with some beautiful elements. B 8. Crossing Mind - Entropy (First Edition) took time to grow on me. It's very melodic, and not too complex or technical to the point I admire more than enjoy it, as my issue with some songs by the artist. The melodies smooth. They stand out. I enjoyed the euphoric feel in the song, but felt that the arrangement in the forth and fifth minute grew fairly typical and repetitive. Why not have magic in place of this? Take us higher? There's a sweet maneuver in the sixth minute that refreshes the whole. The song feels more varied and alive here. Overall this is an elegant, enjoyable track and one of my favorites on Inti. A- 9. Sykespico - Glimmers of Sunrise is an uplifting, morning track. The female hymns aren't too frequent (thankfully) and grew on me on repeat listens. The song has a pleasant vibe, nice melody/sound work. For a sunrise song, it's not at the level of Astral Projection's Liquid Sun, but then again, what sunrise track is? The track does waver close to mainstream trance, but basks close enough to Goa shores to not sabotage the album. The climax towards the end lifts the mood higher. This is a solid way to end a compilation that goes from dark (aggression) to light (positivity), something we can all experience more of in our lives. B+ Conclusion Inti is more atypical not. Nearly every artist offers something different, interesting, and catchy. Both songs by Triquetra are very great! Morphic Resonance delivers another dynamic, exciting track, though maybe crams in a bit too much via super climax towards the end. Crossing Mind offers a surprisingly elegant (not overly technical stylized) track. Sykespico ends Inti with an upbeat morning sunrise track. There are no filler songs, though a few segments of songs I found to drag or have slightly typical arrangement before breaking out into more refreshing (imaginative) work. These moments were few and far between. That said, Perverse Polymorph should have been more cohesive and satisfying considering its terrifically dark, crisp atmosphere and synths. It never seems to go anywhere and appears to be the least favored song here by general consensus. As with any compilation, everyone seems to have their favorites. Check it out and decide for yourself. On a side note, the album's theme appears to be energy going from dark (aggression) to light (colorful, uplifting without sounding cheesy, positive) and while the colorful placement of the Mindsphere track may seem a little jarring, I enjoyed the theme for the most part since so many compilations remain dark and intense throughout. This gave me variety and some very beautiful, crisp tunes within the last few numbers. Overall Inti is a very good / great compilation in my opinion. Check it out and report your thoughts back. Favorite tracks: 2, 4, 5, 8 B+
  7. Virtuart- Virtuart & Friends

    Virtuart and Friends DAT Records 2016 1. Virtuart & Chronomyst - Vashisht 2. Virtuart & Franky - Wakatoom On The Road 3. Virtuart & Kshoo - Esprit Libre 4. Virtuart & Chronomyst - Sacred Drop 5. Virtuart & Nagar Bhatti - 2068 6. Virtuart & Kshoo - N2 O 7. Virtuart & Maël - Neverending Party 8. Virtuart & Manitù - Red Spirit 1. Virtuart & Chronomyst - Prospector M 2. Virtuart - Light Lifter 3. Virtuart & Chronomyst - L'Karnaj 4. Virtuart & Manitù - Indian Summer 5. Virtuart & Nagar Bhatti - Svadeshi 6. Underhead - Orejuna 7. Virtuart - La Sorcière Des Sables & L'Homme Libre (Sandoz Mix) 8. Virtuart - L'Annee Des 13 Lunes (Galactic Time Mix) DAT Records released one of the best compilations of 2016, e.g., Mind Rewind 3, yet Virtuart and Friends was undoubtedly IMHO their best album of the year. For starters, it received #4 in the Psynews "Best of 2016" Results. I think it had a good chance making #3 if more people heard it. Update: After posting my review, I saw that these songs were made in the 90's! So I reviewed it like they just finished production. I suppose that's a good thing. Anyway, we occasionally talk about a certain sound we miss from the golden years (1996-1998) of Goa-Trnace. Fortunately, we get to experience that with this fresh double album that would have been a classic then, had it released then. CD 1 1. Virtuart & Chronomyst - Vashisht incorporates some very nice drum work before the arrival of a catchy, low grinding synth to drive the vehicle at 1:46. More world building ignites after a brief transition, and we climb again. Detailed textures emerge in the second act, creating an infectious rhythm. A soft spot approaches, fronting a second lead. The last act incorporates some nice sounds and arrangement, though it sounds a bit similar (safe?), possibly due to the music rebuilding on its general 0:16 sound. But that's the worst I can say. This is a solid track, and this is just the beginning. B 2. Virtuart & Franky - Wakatoom On The Road is more complex, melodic, and ambitious. Early effects, like nuts and bolts add to the mix before a lively sound via 3:00. The first act is good, showcases a mechanical passage. There's a gripping lead at 4:20 that is soon complimented with a more aggressive, stacotto synth. Brief transitions front new ideas that keep this path unpredictable and interesting. The song climaxes with a beautiful lead at 7:16. This part reveals heart, the one ingredient I felt was missing. This is a strong, creative, and energetic track filled with variety! I find it more fulfilling than the previous one. Nice work! A- 3. Virtuart & Kshoo - Esprit Libre accents early on with a brief voice sample. It's not bad, though tastier accents exist in the track and overall album. The zippy synths add intricacy, engaging us early within the effect-ladden structure. There's a sweet, echoed sound at 2:12. The ear candy backdrop takes the forefront around this exciting fusion of energy. The sound selection, arrangement, and mixing in the second act is juicy, dynamic, and tastefully rhythmic. A little synth suddenly appears, enjoying the spotlight before the artists press the ignition at 5:38, a terrific sequence! The third act maintains the high energy. I love the skipping (hypnotic) sound towards the end, and the return of the music after the song seems to peter out. This track is so dynamic, pumping, and psychedelic. And this never-released-thing is from the 90..?! So cool! Kudos to the sound/melody work, mixing, and direction. Super track! A 4. Virtuart & Chronomyst - Sacred Drop is more raw, driving, and acidy. We get a neat, little synth melody in the first act. But what really stood out to me, besides the vibrating atmosphere is the energy emphasis that occurs when new synths arrive, e.g., 3:34 and 4:01. That aspect is fun! I'm not a fan of the Indian chanting. I'm just a huge cosmic nut. What can I say . Also, the middle Eastern melody at 4:16 sounds a bit childish to me. The song grows ridiculously trippy from 5:10 forward, as if we OD'd on psychedelics! The last act is strong with exception to the returning melody from 4:16. It takes away from the otherwise sleek, edgy feel. Otherwise, great song! B+ / A- 5. Virtuart & Nagar Bhatti - 2068 has a dong-esque accent early on that develops into a melody. The accents on this album are so catchy and this is no exception. Another plus is the synth at 1:10. Here the song has a sort-of skipping, hypnotic feel that Espirit Libre first introduced, conceptually anyway. The first act's arrangement could have used more variety, but that's a nitpick. Also, the music gets a little repetitive by 5:30. Fortunately, the interlude at 5:50 changes things up, restoring intrigue and appeal. Things grow catchier from there thanks to a gripping final act. An emotive wave hits at 7:26, adding harmony and improving the whole with beautiful sound formation. Despite a few nitpicks, this is a very good track. B+ 6. Virtuart & Kshoo - N2 O is another psychedelic albeit darker vehicle. There's a drumroll at 1:37 and the plot starts to thicken. A little more could have been added (for me anyway) by 2:30. Not to worry. A synth arrives in the third minute, though it isn't the fire. It lights the wick. A stronger lead suddanly enters at 3:41, and everything lights up! The forth and fifth-- basically the rest of the track is exciting, full of energy. It's excellent. While the song's first half took a while to get going, the second half turned this number into a psychedelic cocktail. Enjoy! A- 7. Virtuart & Maël - Neverending Party has a curious, arguably mischievous opening. Remember a while back, I praised the usage of "accents" on this album? Well this thing accents very well, multiple times, e.g., the beeping at 0:26. The song showcases more energy too. The synths are fast and involving. The character's personality has attitude. The song's more dynamic and magnetic than the previous tracks. And that spinning, spiralizing accent effect from early on is sweet! There are transitions that front new accents, killer synths, and some crazy voice FX that add to the unstoppable carnage of this Joker-esque ride! Not only does the song excel on the mixing front (like many of the songs on the album), it's daring, determined, and intense. Never mind that this never-ending party starts strong and keeps getting stronger. Even the last minute is FANTASTIC. Can we order more of this please? Neverending Story is one of the jewels of the year, and in years. The unhinged nature of it coupled with an experienced set of mixing skills, solid direction,and risk-taking are just a few things that make this song top notch and so much fun! A 8. Virtuart & Manitù - Red Spirit opens with cloud walking atmosphere. After the inclusion of a fairly harmonious and catchy albeit incoherent vocal-esque accent, the song begins to develop. I wasn't as engaged as I wanted to be in the first act. There's a strong buildup in energy across the 4th minute, peeking our curiosity. This follows the energetic release, a attractive braid of melodies. The second act is elegant. The music crosses a second mystical barrier (transition) which takes this dragon to new heights, encompassing improved sound/melody work coupled in warm atmosphere, and the song's signature, harmonious accent to boot. My favorite part is the re-collection of energy around the 8th minute, resulting in a beautiful, infectious climax. This is another highlight on the album. A- CD 2 1. Virtuart & Chronomyst - Prospector M combines layers of euphoria with bouncy, infectious tunes, immersed in warm and euphoric atmosphere. Sounds good? I hope so because this song's excellent. The first act incorporates a very catchy, be it gentler melodic approach before the relaxing interlude. The music returns refreshed, with a very catchy tune, arrangement at 3:45, and is complimented with stronger synths and energy at 4:52, the latter is superb. The beat soon disappears to introduce something new (and very nice) in the 8th minute. The final act evolves into an arresting, exciting, and captivating rhythm, ending the chapter on a refreshing high. The sound/melody work, development, and direction throughout this song was wonderful. The first track on CD 2 is already one of my favorites tracks. If you like catchy "tunes" in your Goa, you're going to love this. Superb track! A 2. Virtuart - Light Lifter has a mystical opening thanks to lush female hymns and atmosphere. I wish the overall song built on this sound (earlier on). The promising introduction fades at 1:20. Here the song basically starts anew. The first act is decent buildup. From around 3:50 forward, the song grows increasingly catchy. Things really jelled for me at 5:09. The sound/melody work really stands out in the second act; it's great! The last third sees the change up of music. I liked the progression initially, but felt that the music could have developed more, encompassing more variety, as it's not eventful. I feel like the artists could have developed the fantasy (more infectious, detailed) aspect towards the end, in that sense. This is a solid track with a really good second act! B / B+ 3. Virtuart & Chronomyst - L'Karnaj begins darker, more atmospheric. The first act engaged me more than the previous numbers first few minutes. After an ominous (beat-free) interlude, the music breaks out at 2:47. The rhythm here is less predictable and quite catchy. The next clearing is brief. It fronts a homogenous continuation. More development would have been more refreshing I feel. After the drumroll at 4:30, an elegant lead enhances the vehicle. The atmosphere grows increasingly thick with soundscapes and dripping, psychedelic ooze and treats. The transformative final act of the song is sneaky relative to how trippy it becomes. The sound/melody work keep us hooked, thanks to the creative direction. By the time we reach our destination, the vehicle is drenched in psychedelia. B+ / A- 4. Virtuart & Manitù - Indian Summer begins with a danceable, stomping sound. It's a little atypical, but let's see where it goes. A flying saucer effect cuts through the air, across the third minute (very cool). The lead at 3:54 is strong too, elevating the vehicle through an intriguing transition. This song improves considerably since the stomping opening. Another area worth nothing is at 4:50. From the midway mark forward, the creature grows like a tornado, gaining strength and delectable details as it moves forward. From the halfway moment (roughly) we're flying through in an exciting wave of immersive wonder, color, complexity, and imaginative psychedelia. The sound work in the last act is fantastic! Infectious soundscapes nearly jump out of the speakers, infecting our senses like bursts of cosmic delights. The first act seemed like a very different song from how this evolved. I suppose it could have been more homogenous, but what a wonderful ride this turned into. Great track! A- 5. Virtuart & Nagar Bhatti - Svadeshi teases us early, keeping us at bay around friendly voices, atmosphere. The song takes off at at 1:55 and doesn't look back. The music is rich and engaging! This is just the beginning and it's about to get so much better! 2:52 sees the involvement of a gripping lead before becoming increasingly catchy across the third minute. The brief interlude leads to juicer, more infectious synths and soundscapes, gorgeous ear candy! The sound work in the second and third act are delightful, ultra melodic, so good you can nearly taste! To top if off. the artists incorporate a stellar lead in the last act. It's awesome. This is one of the catchiest Goa tracks I've ever heard! Another super song! A 6. Underhead - Orejuna​ has an interesting opening coupled with ambient/atmosphere. An intense burst of energy electrifies the atmosphere at 1:23, kicking this thing into high gear. The music does remind me of Pleiadians' side project, Crop Circles 3:43. The second act is harder edged, more acidy and complimented with a softer (less aggressive) tune. The last act continues the high octane and cosmic approach. This was one of my favorite tracks for a while, but the adrenaline has since worn off. As a whole, it seems like the artists were going for a super/killer (and danceable I presume) Goa song. Either way, it has the energy, the leads, climaxes, etc. That said, the direction and the overall sound/melody design never quite reaches the heights of I.F.O.'s finest songs, Elektra, Alcyone, Asterope, etc. Nonetheless, it's high energy approach is bound to appeal to many Goa listeners and dancers alike. A- 7. Virtuart - La Sorcière Des Sables & L'Homme Libre (Sandoz Mix) begins hard, acidy, and stomping. The darker tone adds variety to the previous track. The second act introduces hard synths to punctuate the aggressiveness. What's missing to me is more variety within the song's structure, sounds, and overall direction. This concept happens to some degree when a new lead is introduced at 5:56, restoring interest. Crunchy psy butterflies pass by, and I can imagine the psychedelic nature of the song will please psy/goa listeners alike. The overall song to me, while being effectively hard, acidy, and rough, also feels uninteresting, fairly repetitive, and lackluster. Conceptually, the dark heavy nature of it will appeal to some for the same reasons I don't care for it. But it's not bad! B 8. Virtuart - L'Annee Des 13 Lunes (Galactic Time Mix) is a distinct closing. The driving feel has an atmosphere nearly unseeable from the amount of thick psy pollution via textures and soundscapes. I imagine the artists wanted to end the album with a very psychedelic track, and I give him (them) credit for sticking to their vision. This chapter adds to the imaginatively exciting and more often than not elaborate chapters played beforehand. The song reminds me of a group of malevolent, extra-terrestial saucers, scouting neighborhoods for potential subjects. The song is moody and dark, and the ambient adds to the haunting vibe. This is a solid closing to an excellent double album. A- CONCLUSION Virtuart and Friends is a surprisingly strong Goa album that would have been in the red section for Classics here on Psynews (for those who remember back then) had it been given an official release in the 90's. The old-school style is style. It's getting better as the album progresses. A few things to boot include the sound/melody work, mixing, creativity, and complexity. We get a handful of terrific numbers on CD 1. The album climaxes with Neverending Story (energy wise IMO) and then follows that up with the traveling, elegant, and mystical journey of Red Spirit. CD 2 continues the healthy trend of super songs, starting with the infectiously harmonious, Prospector M. This is DAT's best release IMO of 2016, followed by V/A - Mind Rewind 3. The double album is a newly re-mastered, previously unreleased (for sure, destined to become a) classic from the golden era. Only for our time now. It's one of the best Goa albums of 2016 and one in... well I'll let you decide after its grown on you. Highly recommended! Favourite tracks CD 1: 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 8 CD 2: 1, 3, 4, 5, 6 A- Sample / Order https://datrecords.bandcamp.com/album/virtuart-friends http://classic.beatport.com/release/virtuart-and-friends/1959583 https://www.psyshop.com/shop/CDs/dat/dat2cd009.html Stream a full track off the full album!
  8. Morphic Resonance - The City Of Moons

    This is one of my favorite Goa albums. I feel like Suntrip was getting a little like Disneyland with fun (less risky) rides until they released this beast of a dark Goatrance album. As with Filteria's Sky Input, it won't appeal to everyone due to its extremeness, e.g., intensity, aggression, etc. But I would hardly change a thing, in retrospect. The first 3-4 tracks are so catchy IMO. Well done. T-4 felt a little less ambitious (less variety?) and felt less stellar after the first act before rebounding with more delectable synth work again. Overall it's a great track. The album seems to progressively improve in the first half, though it loses some momentum in the second half. I feel like it peeks with T-3 via City of Moons. Nevertheless, each song offers something innovative and satisfying with with exception to Mindwarp which isn't bad, but sticks out like a sore thumb compared to the other songs. Hmmm.. its been since 2009 with Filteria's Daze of our Lives that I recall giving a new school Goa album an A Also, a few songs like Chronos, while overall great -- could have used a few segment refinements. I've since rewrote my review of Chronos and will include it for convenience... 5. Chronos begins strong, as if (at 0:13) a special event is unfolding in our consciousness. The brief opening is emotionally riveting and has FEELS -- something I'd love to hear more of (at times) in this album. At 0:52, the artist establishes "attitude" with a zippy, infectious synth. This attitude-esque segment coupled with a noteworthy beat, ambient, and atmosphere (0:52 to 2:47) is exceptional and develops beautifully. That is, until 2:48. From 2:48 until 3:14, the more zippy and edgy (I'm calling attitude) approach is lost due to a repeating dinging synth that takes me out of the hard-edged and raw, exciting feel that the artist so flawlessly captured beforehand. It's not bad but kind of dismal, comparatively speaking, a fairly weak patch. The song returns to healthy, now refreshed (new moves aka synths) topical terrain from 3:15 to 3:27. We enter an intriguing, atmospheric interlude that the artist takes advantage of. When we release back into hyperdrive at 4:20, the attitude returns, delicious. The second act is super from from 4:47 to 5:37. Unfortunately, at 5:50, we hit yet another less stellar (by comparison) patch due to a growingly repetitive synth. This part isn't bad. But it's not nearly as catchy as the more complex, rich, and sleek feel beforehand. That's two noticeably weaker (by comparison) segments so far to an otherwise strong track. We reach a final interlude from roughly 6:42 to 7:07. The sweet buildup releases us back into cosmic bewilderment at 7:20. It's great. Actually, the last act is beautifully designed, and returns us to the intergalactic feel I love so much on this track (when it's keeping things tight!) and overall album. The finale is excellent, a climactic burst of cosmic excitement and intervention. The song's few noticeably weaker patches (mentioned above) are unfortunate considering how great everything else is. Chronos could have used a little more refining in that regard. Otherwise, the song is satisfying as a near whole and showcases some amazing work. A- I LOVE how this album avoids middle eastern influences (feels) until the last song (at times) and keeps to its darker vision. Very few new school artists like Filteria I feel can churn out masterpiece tracks and albums. The next MR album has potential to be the Terminator 2 (so to speak) to this ambitious, sleek, and thrilling nighttime (but noticeably less stellar at times) release. Thanks again Christian/Morphic Resonance and Suntrip for this killer release that knows how to let its energy loose off the hinges. Not since Tandu's Multimoods do I recall being so into synth work in a dark Goa-Trance album, nearly 22 years before this release.
  9. Psynews "Best of 2016" Results

    I'm glad it won. I was back-and-forth between UX and Morphic Resonance, and ended up leaving UX at #1. I enjoyed both so much. Tastes are different of course. For me, Morphic Resonance was huge. Suntrip never released anything close to the dark/sleek edginess, and grandiose-ness (dark goa wise) as City of Moons IMO. Kudos to the artist and Suntrip for making (and getting out there) this radical gem. Here's hoping the second tops the first (no weaker songs!) and is the magnum opus it has potential to be. No rush! I would have added Max Million - Monogramma to my downtempo if I knew about it earlier. This is great moody stuff (attached). Just wow, bring on the LP or sequel LP. Beautiful work. Link: https://youtu.be/ZMrdhxjk8AA Also, thank you for taking the time to count the votes and so compile the Best of 2016 results!
  10. V/A - The Mystery Of Crystal Worlds

    Many of the songs are really good on this TRIPLE CD COMPILATION! You have to comb through them to find your favorites. The Filteria track I found underwhelming. It sounds too samey throughout and doesn't pop or immerse me like many of his other celestial bodies (songs). Fortunately the artists and numerous others knocked it out of the ballpark! Artifact303, Merr0w, Psy-H, Centavra Project, Celestial Intelligence, Morphic Resonance. STREAM the FULL 3 CD compilation on YouTube below! ( CD 1 https://youtu.be/FPXASvWBJyw CD 2 https://youtu.be/rmUAWxO22Eo CD 3 https://youtu.be/OKhXBYkZ5CI
  11. Imba - First Encounter (Suntrip Records)

    Tracklist: 01 - Imbaba & 303 Trancers 02 - Hidden Paradise 03 - Cosmos In Her Eyes 04 - First Encounter 05 - Blacklight Beings 06 - Creature Of Heaven 07 - Digital Non-Sense (featuring Ephedra) 08 - Lydia Delay - After All (Imba Remix) 09 - Rising Sun I've been meaning to review this for months. Some of these songs will be great for dance floors. But for home listening (me personally) not so much. And for home listening I found a good amount to enjoy here. 1. Imbaba and 303 Trancers is very dance friendly, though that seems to be its priority above almost everything else. To me, this can be described as club (or more formulaic) Goa. For starters, the synths (acid lines?) are so in-my-face. They stand out too much. Furthermore, there are very few melodies. This relentless, rough approach (for me) grew grew tiresome and more repetitive than the song is, early on. There's hardly any room to breath! Moreover, the song left me with no room to explore, travel, or be tranced. I feel forced to dance rather than imaginatively lured into an adventurous fantasy reflective of so many great Goa tracks. The song has lots of energy and momentum. Morphic Resonance's City of Moons [the album] had that too. But its approach kept me immersed, hooked, and refreshed. I do like the segment from 4:39 to 5:06, but even that would eventually get tiresome. The fifth minute forward I found too similar sounding, and the hard-edged, in-my-face synth and beat tired me out before the song was over. That said, this is probably solid for dance floors, DJ's, and clubs, and with few exceptions, I can see general mainstream electronic fans saying it's awesome because of its relentless energy. I realize that my criticisms can be argued away since the artist was intentionally making this the way it is but that doesn't mean I have to like it (as a whole). B- 2. Hidden Paradise thankfully dives deeper into storytelling development and variety. There's a beautiful lead at 1:22 that reminds me of Transwave's Land of Freedom. It's very nice! However, the synth at 1:49 turns the track into formulaic club trance. What happened? The song went from promising to predictable quick! Thankfully 3:16 introduces hymns that add feeling. The skipping melodies sound great. The synths aren't too in-my-face like the opening track. I can breath. Also nice are several interludes and tempo changes, and the ambient influence is great. These aspects create a healthier, more developed, and satisfying chapter. There's a pretty cool Goa meets Psy combo in the sixth minute before another interlude. Here the artist reprises the epic Trance anthem via 7:30, unfortunately turning the song back into, what feels like -- a mainstream club trance influenced (commercial Goa?) song. I can see this divided audiences, at least Goa listeners, Imba fans, etc. The song is sure to appeal the general club trance scene. Compared to the first track, this is so much more varied and alive, and yet it could have been excellent if it lost the training wheels and let the spirit of Goa-Trance guide its soul throughout, or replaced those contrived segments with something more akin to Goa. Still I enjoyed many aspects of this song. Good track! B+ 3. Cosmos In Her Eyes has a beautiful, cosmic opening. Now would it be possible for a song to carry that gorgeous opening feel throughout the entire song while never getting repetitive? The first act, though a bit simple in arrangement, builds around an atmospheric backdrop with soundscapes. The voice sample at 3:25 is effectively used to enhance the story while doubling as a transitional tool for fresh ingredients. The second involves warmer melodies melodies coupled with very nice atmosphere with ambient elements to boot. It's engaging! There is a second voice sample at 5:25 before the last, delectably homogenous act. The song's dreamlike approach pulls me in, unlike the first track that kept associating my mind to dance floors, or the second Track that that infrequently made me feel like DJ Tiesto was trying to spin incorporate his House and/or Trance set to Imba's next visionary album. I'm all but swept away here by other-worldly landscapes. The song is vision driven. It sounds so passionately produced, full of heart and spirit. The song is a beautiful piece of work, and one of the artist's best tracks to date. Beautiful work! Well done! A- 4. First Encounter is more energetic. The first main lead at 1:30 stands out so much that it all but drowns out its supporting layers (a reoccurring issue I have with the album). It's joined with another main melody. The sound selection is great, though the arrangement is repetitive and predictable; also the leads stand out a little too much, thus not allowing supporting sounds to feel more rhythmic which could have produced more complex sound designs (another issue I have with the album). The main melody exits at 3:17. I realize Imba likes melody leads (which we so often praise), but they stand out so much that their sound volume in addition to their lack of variety in arrangement makes the songs (at times) feel less layered and more monotonous and close-up (obvious) than they are. The last act doesn't change in style obviously. I get bored. I want to hear something more intelligent, ambitious, and imaginative, as Imba proved he's capable of in his collaborative Sevilla In Trance track on Suntrip's Ten Spins Around the Sun compilation. Hearing that created excitement for his main albums. I miss hearing work with that infectious (never generic sounding) complexity. Where is THAT Imba? Sigh... This song isn't bad if you're looking to dance, or for clubs that play trance I suppose. it's Goa influenced, so it has that going for it. But not in the way I prefer. B- 5. Blacklight Beings appears to have less Goa influence than previous tracks which is ironic considering this sounds more distinct than almost every songs on the album. The first half is pretty unambitious, as though we're going through the motions. It would have benefitted from having a more intriguing buildup. From around 4:50 forward is where the song starts to get interesting to me. Crossing the fifth minute (at 5:14), the artist showcases a delectably engaging segment of mechanical complexity. It's excellent. Now why couldn't more of the album be as catchy as that? Not only is it super catchy for home listening. It's also super catchy for dance floors! A wave of ambient soon arrives. It's very nice! This follows a buildup to climax in the sixth minute. The last act is uplifting and fun, despite the simple arrangement. The closing ambient is nice too. Good track! B 6. Creature Of Heaven opens with evocative ambient. It's engaging, though I'm finding that the songs aren't always on the same level as the fantastic introductions to them. The energy picks up with a lead that, well I'm sure you can guess. The first half is pretty standard. I was expecting an epic, spectacular dance-friendly track after reading some of the praise above. What I got was a fairly catchy sounding lead without a memorable arrangement for a third of the song. There's a break. The beat disappears and at 5:13 a wave of emotive ambient arrives (very nice along with the intros), followed by a voice sample about wars, land, and power. It is here that I'm hooked. This part adds substance and character, but it should have a song that is on par and as powerful as a prominent, highlighted moment like this that compliments it. The ambient/voice (from a film) provides FEELS, despite the uptempo work not capturing the same magic. Still I have to consider the style. The music grows catchier in the last act, and the ambient compliments it. B 7. Digital Non-Sense (featuring Ephedra) again starts with a promising opening. The first act's melody work is nice. It sounds more layered and rhythmic thankfully. A transition gives way to bouncy (catchy!) synths via 4:33. The song's fifth and sixth minute are good too. The skipping ambient notes, also used earlier, are great. There is a really nice shift in arrangement and sound at 7:30. A voice sample arrives and the music returns. There's a lot that engages me in this song compared to some of the other songs on this album. The synths jump out, but enough supporting sounds compliment them, so I'm tired or bothered by anything lead-oriented thanks to a healthy variety of ideas, execution, and mixing. While nothing spectacular, this is a positive step in the right direction, Goa-Trance wise. It doesn't sound like standardized Trance influence nor formulaic. Cool track! B+ 8. Lydia Delay - After All (Imba Remix) is an example (at least in the first half) where the synths are more rhythmically integrated with the whole. This approach allows more enjoyable details e.g., ambient, atmosphere, and soundscapes to breath! The journey is seamless, fluid, and delectable; it's beautifully composed. Then we reach an interlude that is elegant, mystical, and intriguing. Everything sounds great thus far. There's a quick buildup after that. Unfortunately the returning music at 4:29 sounds too club trance influenced. What happened to the mystical vision and vibe? After this detraction to Goa enthusiasts, the song's sixth and seventh minute improve. Unfortunately, the second act takes away from the more mature GOA feel in favor of returning to a safer, more Trance-friendly sound. B 8. Rising Sun begins with a poignant, ambient opening. The arrangement early on starts nice, but grows a bit repetitive to me. An interlude and a voice sample allows a catchier, stronger segment and lead to arrive. The lead never appears too loud and prominent in the tiresome sense. It's good! The returning music is more energy and drive, very nice. We reach another island (interlude via 5:42 which ignites even tastier complexity. While no melody or particular section sticks to me in memory, no part of the song take away from the overall whole. The last third loses some melodies in favor of a zippier segment, and are thankfully joined by a very nice albeit fairly repetitive melody in the last 1-2 minutes. I love the final seconds. It makes me wonder how great a Goa-Influenced down (and occasionally mid) tempo album could be by this artist. Solid closing! B+ CONCLUSION There's a lot I like and don't like here. Where to begin? The intros are intriguing and mystical. But the overall style and the songs (at times) sound generic compared to them. I love the artist's use of ambient. It creates warmth and emotion, though the personality of the tracks does not always reflect the promising impression of the ambient introductions. I really enjoyed chunks of Hidden Paradise, the entirety of Cosmos In Her Eyes, the second half of Blacklight Beings, the first half of Lydia Delay - After All (Imba Remix) and Rising Sun. Unfortunately, I can't escape the more mainstream sounding style and Trance influence that makes certain songs (or parts of them) sound too formulaic at times. Some of these songs just sound too similar too, or at least extended parts of them do. It's as if the artist took Goa melodies, plus some extra Goa ingredients, and made a Trance structured album with them with exception to a few tracks. There is some beautiful work as the album progresses. I simply wish the artist would swim further away from the shallow waters and produce a definitive [stellar] Goa-Trance album if producing electronic music is going to be his legacy unless he prefers to do mainstream-influenced Trance Goa (if that makes sense). The end result here is a mixture of good, great, and some not so great work, the latter more likely to please the general Trance crowd despite Goa influence (more or less) in virtually every track. If Imba enjoys this type of style music, he should stick with it despite criticisms. He could improve this less elaborate approach, and take the safer (potentially more profitable?) route assuming this release is really that successful. It's bound to attract positive comments from a few those less familiar with Goa music, and probably a few who love Goa as well. To the contrary, many Goa listeners have stepped away from anything that sounds like general Trance. We prefer more spice to our tea, complexity (for the most part), fantasy, and depth. Unfortunately, I feel like these, with few exceptions and along with some other more advanced aspects of Goa-Trance, took a backseat to this album despite the enjoyable, fun parts. One of my biggest problems with this album, is that many of the synths that the artist selected, stand out too much on their own, instead of coming together more cohesively to compliment the whole. Another issue is the more club-friendly trance influence despite NO track ever sounding like "club trance" (at least not as a whole) per say. Nevertheless, these more standard (formulaic, predictable... call them what you will) influences take away from the more imaginative and delectable aspects of Goa-Trance. Maybe Imba was going for higher sales, tracks with appeal to a wider (less Goa alone) audience. Maybe the idea was to make Goa-Trance sound more mainstream friendly. I don't know. I mean, who doesn't want higher sales? I think Imba's great with Goa-Trance, and I'm glad his tilt is towards Goa here, despite some of the melody arrangements lacking complexity and appearing to go through-the-motions at times. The album has many evocative moments (mainly the intros and interludes), buildups, and other changes to keep the general listener entertained. I'm sure some of these songs will do well on dance floors and I enjoyed a handful for home listening (more or less). I simply don't know if Goa listeners (primarily when it comes to home listening) will feel the same, by and large. That said, those looking for fun, more mainstream sounding Goa-influenced tracks should find plenty to like here. Even in terms of Goa, the artist has done some great work. But for me, I expected more, or rather something different. I mean, if you want to make a more mainstream friendly Goa album with more memorable melodies, listen to EPHEDRA's Citric Storm song from 2016's "Flying Over the Universe" album. Or RA's 12th Hour (with. Menkalien) song. The leads on those albums stand out, but never too much for their own good, All in all, viewers should listen to this album, at least online, and decide what they think for themselves. Nitpicks and complaints (constructive criticism) aside, this is a pretty solid release. Favorite songs: 2, 3, 5, 7, 9 B Sample / Order https://www.suntriprecords.com/release/cat/SUNCD44/ Stream the full album here!
  12. VA - Analog Trips [DAT Records]

    Thanks for the correction. I don't recall where I read that, or rather it's Simon + Nick aka Doof.
  13. VA - Analog Trips [DAT Records]

    The mystery to me here is how so many people missed reviewing or even commenting on Alalog Trips considering it, along with Mind Rewind 3 made a handful of Top 10 Lists in the Best of 2016 Thread via General Psytrance Forum. 1. Medicine Drum - Angelic Force is fairly simple, yet friendly on the ears. It's unique, melodic, and develops nicely throughout. I really like this one. 2. Elysium & Yaco Vam - Tears In The Rain has far fewer layers and is too light with ingredients, development, and layers I feel. The song has a unique approach to Goa (almost in a minimal sense but not technically) and some very nice elements. I keep thinking things will develop or evolve, only to be treated to more of the little that works here. The track lacks a satisfying payoff too, but some may enjoy this atypical, old-school approach. 3. Gus BUS Till - That Sounds Swell is more varied, psychedelic, and layered. It gets quite catchy and infectious. It's atmospheric, melodic, and intriguing. Very nice! 4. Earglobe - Spherelobe is higher in energy, more psychedelic. The song is surprisingly a collaboration between Hallucinogen and Doof (Edit: I thought I read Etnica was involved somewhere but I guess not unless that's clarified, my mistake). I would have liked this story to compose itself into something more satisfying sooner. Fortunately that begins around 4:00 and the last act incorporates a really synth nice lead, elevating the whole! 5. Excess Head - Expo has some really catchy melody/sound (synth) work as it progresses. I really like the echoed synths, the thudding, pinging FX, and various other sound combinations, especially when those signature synths return. Good track! 6. Opale - Krakoa has stronger energy, rhythm, and synths (grittier as it progresses!). This is darker, more driving than previous tracks. Good/great track! 7. Green Nuns Of The Revolution - Lost & Found surprisingly doesn't sound like Green Nuns (to me), save the acid synths that grate on my after a while. The song sounds to samey to me, sound wise, with little in creativity, arrangement, or sound that engages me. Fortunately the song features healthier, more rhythmic and varied synth work in the second half. Decent track. 8. Etnica - Human Geometry initially I didn't like due to the approach of having melodies further from the fore-front. Rather they're integrated closer to the volume of the bass line and beat. After giving this a few more listens, I find it one of my favorite songs on the album. The synths and their arrangement isn't in my face, but they're catchy. There's a hypnotic buzzing sound throughout. The song's coupled with key changes and fresh development with each act that compliments the previous one. Soundscapes jump off the page more than melodies and in the end, I find this pretty unique and catchy, much more so than the previous one by another artist/group (song) I had higher hopes for. I love how the music returns (after the voice sample) in the final moments. Cool track! 9. Doof - Giving Godhead is another song I was really looking forward to. This sounds like it could be a closing track on a Doof album we never got. Sadly the track has little (at least for me) that hooks. It's lackluster. I'm excited, in anticipation for something more catchy, engaging to occur. The song's approach is so soft and develops so slowly that it's basically (arguably) over before anything interesting takes place. The second act seems to be building up before diffusing into similar sounds. The last act has a little more oomph melody wise, but the overall feel is so similar to the first two acts that I cannot help but feel that the song is repetitious and uninspired. Oh well. That's my feelings anyway. It's not bad. I simply expected more. Analog Trips is a good compilation full of unreleased [old school] Goa songs by famous artists. I feel that Mind Rewind 3 is stronger, comparatively speaking. Nonetheless, Analog Trip has some tracks even better than some of the ones on Mind Rewind 3 with that tasty old-school vibe and sound that we seldom hear anymore. A few songs are simple from today's standards but this is 90's Goa-Trance we're talking here and some of it's great. Some of these could be described as underrated rare gems while a few may or may not excite your senses. That said, it's hard to believe that some of these songs were never released. Favorite tracks: 1, 3, 5, 6, 8
  14. Perfect Blind - Three Spires

    Wow this is great! Atmospheric, emotionally resonant, melodic and mature space-travel bliss! I didn't know of this artist until the many recommendations I saw for his album Wonderers in the "Best of 2016" thread. The mid-tempo work is fantastic in his 2016 album, but the first two slower songs in addition to a few slower others take me out of the powerful, captivating ride achieved in this one. This release is more consistent in tone, energy, and rhythm. It's a wonderful, homogeneous, visionary I'd add, and intergalactic Mid-Tempo album with some dramatic heft and storytelling to boot. Well done. I'm impressed. He's attracting a lot of ears thanks to continually producing strong and imaginative work. Included is the full stream to this underrated gem.
  15. They've gotten TOO SYNTHETIC for me, too machine-like, too NOISEY I miss their deeply musical, magical melody work. The video with the mushrooms dancing has a catchy tune, but that's about it, and when you hear the FULL track, you'll notice the tune part is the last third of it. Before it, the song is fairly minimal and just not very good IMO. And if you think there's no singing (or the vocals are creatively great) sample this halfway through. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GNv6Y_0wfIE
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