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DoktorG

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DoktorG last won the day on April 20

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  1. Astral Projection "Into the Void" - AWESOME! I completely love this beautiful track with its apt samples, clear and direct structure, subtle bubbling details, harmonic pads, and chill-inducing melody - all leading to a powerful emotional and psychedelic experience for the listener, whatever their state of mind. For me, this track feels like being sucked into the void on a tractor beam of inevitability, suggesting that the artists integrated form and content. The sense of inevitability can come from lack of innovation, but in this case it arises from a zen simplicity that is deeply elegant and sophisticated, hiding the patient craft of decades. Almost all great art has this feeling of inevitability about it. Hence I appreciate the fact that Astral Projection have not changed their style; this track could easily be from 95. Change is good, but so is continuity if you have a winning formula. We can call this generic, but these guys created the genre. We travel into the void in the hands of the masters... ~*~
  2. Ok, thanks for the information. I'm not entirely convinced; I have 2 glow in the dark t-shirts from Suntrip and they were E15 each on cotton (probably not organic). But thanks anyway.
  3. Thanks for the heads up, but 34 pounds is a bit on the steep side considering that band t-shirts in different genres typically go for 10-20 Euros. This is double, if not more, that kind of price. Is this the fashionista ideology of paying/suffering to be fashionable?
  4. I've been a fan of E-Mantra since his awesome debut album "Arcana", which is still his best work. I've tended to prefer his up-tempo stuff to his chill out, mainly because it strikes me as more original, whereas some of the downtempo material has seemed a touch generic and predictable. At times the downtempo tracks seem like Goa played at 33 instead of the 45 it was pressed at, if you see what I mean. Nothing necessarily wrong with that, but it can seem slowed up as a result. Now he's back with "Drifting", a downtempo album released on vinyl as well as other formats. This is generally a chill album with a serene atmosphere and gentle melodies admirably captured by the marine cover art. It is quite different to the more complex and psychedelic downtempo of a Shpongle or an Androcell. One of the things I really like is the way this album builds from chill tracks towards more uptempo stuff towards the end - it is quite carefully structured. The latter more uptempo tracks seem a bit better than the slower early tracks, suggesting that E-Mantra is better at trance than chill. The melodies in the slow track "Returning Home", for instance, are on the predictable side. However, when things speed up a little towards the end, so does the quality and interest. The breakbeats on "Sea of Eternal Gloom" are noteworthy and a welcome refreshment in a genre dominated by 4/4; this track reminds me a lot of Electric Universe psybreaks songs. "Farewell Philae" is also a noteworthy track with gloomy bass synths. The final track "Depth of Nothingness" is probably my favourite: steady pulsing beat, sawing synths, sprinkles of dewdrops - lovely. Another thing is how good the album sounds on vinyl. When I listened to it online initially, sometimes it seemed just a bit too chintzy and smiley for me. However, listening on vinyl now, that feeling has dissipated and instead the scale of the sound creates compelling mystery. Well done to Ensancha El Alma for a good mastering job. In conclusion, "Drifting" at times seems to be E-Mantra on autopilot, but in the right mood is soothing - who in this world does not need more of that? If only Suntrip Records would release "Arcana" on vinyl. Anoebis, are you listening? ~*~
  5. Ostap Hirnyak is a Ukrainian musician known as Katedra. His superbly original debut album is here: https://globalsect.bandcamp.com/album/katedra-we-are-not-alone Slava Ukraine!
  6. "Timelessness": I like that. I'm also so happy that we agree on the pre-eminence of this artist. Analogue has a physical, visceral sound that vibrates the whole body. If set up and played back right (not always straightforward), it can also deliver a velvety warmth and scale that is seductive and appeals to precisely "the primordial parts of our brains".
  7. Some reviewers (on Discogs, for instance) have found RA to be lacking in dramatic hooks, but even if that is true (which I'm sceptical about) those can detract from the hypnosis that RA typically enables in the listener. Indeed, it might be said that the ethereal, floaty, swirly kind of Goa is more about hypnosis than it is about climaxes - more a plateau than a mountain range, more an inner journey than an outer one. Hypnosis is surely close to the heart of trance, related as it is to meditation, magic, dream, and altered states of consciousness. My vinyl copy of To Sirius has amazing sound - lots of tonal colour against a black backdrop. I'm excited to get 9th on vinyl, which should be any day now. I don't think Earthcall is as great as the two prior albums, but it is good nevertheless. For me Christer Borge-Lunde is a major contributor to Goa trance and an instant buy. Do you know "ROM/Azure Child"? Came out on a Blue Moon 12" in 97 - amongst RA's best tracks:
  8. Knocking some of the shibboleths of a movement off their pedestals is not only a sign of decadence, a movement in decay, but also an important stage in identifying the classics that stand the test of time. Hence I read the comments above with some iconoclastic delight and some recognition. I completely agree with the insightful posters above that these are, or were, over-rated: Astral Projection "Trust in Trance" (good album, make that very good, but not in the league of "Dancing Galaxy" and "Another World") Hallucinogen "The Lone Deranger" (amazing sparkling moments but just a bit too cocky about its whacky schtick, such as the Celtic knees-up in "Jiggle of the Sphinx") Man With No Name (some brilliant tracks and very good production but Goa-lite) Green Nuns of the Revolution (infectious at times, but comes across today as hastily thrown together) The Muses Rapt (the cheddar detector was malfunctional) Infected Mushroom (first two albums are excellent; after that...) So there we have it: the greatest hits of Goa trance are reduced to smouldering ruins by the critics. The question all this begs is what, then, has withstood the test of time? But I think that's for another topic.
  9. Surely no-one is surprised that Infected's prices are, erm, high. I'm sorry to be cynical, but they've mostly been making cheesy and commercial music since album number 2 in my jaded view. Moreover, if this is not a remastering that is really a pity as the mastering on the original triple vinyl is far from special.
  10. There's an argument to be made that great art has mortality awareness, which lifts it beyond the merely fashionable or topical. As Ezra Pound said: "literature is news that stays news". I like this collaboration:
  11. I think that Aleah knew she was dying when she recorded Hour of the Nightingale. Thanks for unearthing this "Jewel Stanbridge" gem! "Jewel Stanbridge" and "Julia Liane Stanbridge" are the names that Discogs uses: https://www.discogs.com/release/66424-Various-Caribbean-Eclipse The one review at the bottom says it all: "Not a single bad track here in my opinion, but the stand out track is withouth doubt the Binah - Crescent Suns track. An almost 12 minutes beautiful journey, given us by two of the true masters in the scene, Simon Posford and George Barker. But the track wouldn't have been the same without the gorgious vocals by Jewel Stanbridge. Her voice in this track is absolutely stunning!" ~*~
  12. Swampdelica I only discovered this record now; I don't know which mix I am listening to, but this is interesting and original music. This is Sloa Goa with a relatively slow, measured, unhurried pace. The rhythms tend to the industrial and have a grinding quality to them, which at times seems a bit linear and monotonous; I occasionally wanted more syncopation and percussive drama and different drum and cymbal sounds. However, the simple rhythm section avoids the plasticky psytrance sound completely (yay!) and does tend to create hypnosis in the listener. Moreover, the simple pounding drums and pulsating bass are well balanced by rotating and whirling Goa melodies full of reverb and echo, often quite quiet and subtle, and most of which do not build to climaxes. I need to listen again, but I don't recall any vocal samples. This is the opposite of extroverted full on psytrance with its plastic rhythm section and bold shiny leads. Further, the bass is heavy and the sound is quite soft and muddy, almost lo-fi. The overall effect is entrancing - sucking the listener into a deep, dark vortex of murky intrigue. So whilst all the ingredients are familiar, the way they are mixed together is unusual enough that a strange new dish is created: introspective industrial scifi Goa that reminds me a bit of Semsis and Menis in the Koyote days. For me, the primary impression this record creates is of a swamp. I'm calling it swampdelica. Original! Just goes to show that there's more to this genre than we often think; imagination is the main limitation. Really hoping to see more from this artist. ~*~ PS - beautiful cover art!!
  13. Thanks Jikkenteki. I should have mentioned Prana, Joujouka, Bass Chakra, Kailash etc. Lots of Suzuki's work involved breaks and dynamic use of percussion. ~*~
  14. O'er, is it really me to kick things off? Ok, my top albums 2021: Uptempo 1) Battle of the Future Buddhas Songs From a Forgotten Memory 2) Khetzal Etamines 3) Artifact 303 From the Stars 4) Moon Beasts On the Edge 5) Various Carpe Noctem Downtempo 1) Entheogenic Animism (listed here as a 2021 release, though I'm not sure about that as Discogs says 2020)
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