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Tristan - Chemisphere


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Artist: Tristan

Title: Chemisphere

Label: Nano Records

Format: CD

Released: April 2007

 

 

Review:

 

"Chemisphere" is arguably one of the most anticipated releases in the psychedelic trance scene this year, being the 3rd album from one of the big boys on the scene, Tristan Cooke. Tristan had his first track released back in 1995, and has since then appeared on practically all the major festivals worldwide, collaborated with artsts like Process, Prometheus, ManMadeMan and Dick Trevor and released on influential labels like Flying Rhino, Matsuri, TIP and TIP.World, Dragonfly, Tristan and Twisted, where he released his first 2 albums, "Audiodrome" and "Substance" - so naturally the expectations for this release are enormous.

 

Surprisingly enough "Chemisphere" is released on Nano Records, and not on his long time home Twisted Records (the label who, in the minds of many a psytrancer, can't do anything wrong) - and in my opinion it was a mistake by Twisted to let Tristan go to another label. Let me tell you why.

 

 

01. It Depends On You [140 BPM]

Opening the show is "It Depends On You", which was recently remixed by UK duo AMD on the 3rd "Origin" festival compilation. It starts with a 1½ minute long intro with the easily recognisable and very well-chosen voicesamples I've come to love from the remix and then it kicks into action. In short this is happy outdoor trance - more fluid than the AMD version, but still with a lot of dancefloor punch.

 

02. Focus [142 BPM]

"Focus" is, like the opener, rich on well-chosen delusional voice-samples, with especially the catchy "You ain't got a body no more son, it's all up here now!" standing out. The track itself contains a bit more bouncy bassline than the opener, and is generally slightly more on the darker side with hints of acid here and there. Another solid tune.

 

03. Dream Machine [142 BPM]

The aptly titled "Dream Machine" takes over, and it's undoubtedly the must blissful dancefloor track on the album, with less of the Twisted-power, but a more traditional morning full on approach. Dreamy pads, fragments of female vocals and delicious understated melodies, but never ever getting cheesy or predictable - amazing morning tune, a sure favourite in my book.

 

04. No Guarantees [144 BPM]

From dreamy morning trance we again move towards the slightly darker, more psychedelic trance. "No Guarantees" is a real stormer of a night time tune, with more than a few hints of the oldschool Twisted Records vibe. This will surely become one of the most played tunes by DJ's looking for massive UK psychedelic trance. BIG.

 

05. Spiritual Excitation [145 BPM]

The promo-material for the album says that he started studying guitar, and in "Spiritual Excitation" we get the first result of that. Again moving from darker psychedelic trance to more epic morning trance, with some guitar-riffs for added effect, but never going over the top. A bit more on the funky and playful side compared to the first 4 tunes, but still maintaining the high quality.

 

06. Toad [145 BPM]

"Toad" again bring us back to the more night-time oriented sounds - it sounds quite a lot like something which could have been featured on the "God Save The Machine" compilation last year, meaning high quality UK psychedelic trance, with just a little hint of larger-than-life guitar-riffs somewhere out in the distant background. Great tune, and the album is still going strong.

 

07. Terrordactyl [144 BPM]

The intro in "Terrordactyl" is my favourite on the album, starting with a heavily filtered female vocal, chopped up and sliced to pieces, and with a hint of something that sounds like the theme from an old 30's movie in the background. Sadly the rest of the track doesn't quite live up to the promising beginning - there's some great grooves and energy, but where the guitars in the last couple of tracks where more on the subtle side, we're given the whole in-your-face guitar treatment here. A bit over the top for my liking.

 

08. If Only [142 BPM]

The last dancefloor minded track on the album is "If Only". The overall mood in the track starts out rather positive, but slowly gets more intense and gloomy, and after the peak around halfway through we're introduced to some harsh, strong melodies that sadly seemed a bit too heavy and grim to me. One of the weaker tunes on the album in my opinion.

 

09. Suriname

The last track is "Suriname". Generally I must say that it's rather unoriginal to end an album with a downbeat track, but in this case the result is quite good. Tristan is no stranger to downbeat (just listen to his older projects Delusions Of Grandeur and Event Horizon), and "Suriname" is a lovely, thoughtful chilled out tune with some excellent acoustic guitar work. Certainly a worthy way to finish the album.

 

 

Bottom line:

 

As a DJ-tool, "Chemisphere" surely delivers - I can't say that it really contains any big surprises or major landmarks in terms of musical creativity, but for its intended use, it works really, really well. Tristans experience in playing on practically all the important festivals shines through - put this CD on a big rig, and you have some of the best music for being played outdoors. Really loud.

 

Now, for homelistening I'm a bit more critical - stylistically it is more restricted to one sound, compared to his first 2 albums, and I think the overall flow seems somewhat odd, moving from uplifting morning tunes to twisted nighttime full on, back to morning sounds and back to darker, more psychedelict trance once again. I would have preferred a more coherent flow.

 

At the end of the day, this is another great release from Nano Records though. Definitely comparable with the recent AMD-album (although more floaty and organic), and the quality is just as high. Recommended buy.

 

 

Favourites:

 

1 (!!), 2, 3 (!!), 4, 5, 6, 9

 

 

Verdict:

 

8/10

 

 

Links:

 

Tristan: http://www.djtristan.com/base

Nano Records: http://www.nanorecords.co.uk

Tristan at Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/tristancooke

Nano Records at Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/nanorecords

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I just picked this one up the other day myself. I was waiting for someone to do a full review on it. I must say that I am very pleased with this purchase. I enjoyed The original Depends On You much more than the remix on AMDs Big Fish. I agree that there is no break through sounds or styles here, but this is a solid purchase with top notch production.

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Tristan Cooke, one of the British Psy Trance veterans who previously released 2 brilliant albums on Twisted Records unleashes upon our hungry ears his 3rd album named Chemisphere. Personally, i was a bit skeptic about this one seeing this one released on Nano records instead of his usual home, Twisted Records, but my doubts dissipated as soon as the first sounds landed on my ears. I could easily write a long essay about each track here but it's one of those cases that one sound worths 1000 words. So if you're into energetic fast paced psychedelic trance, do yourself a favour and get this before it becomes a collectors item. Although it has it's weak moments it's still the best full on you're likely to hear at the moment. Add the Floyd'ish Suriname as the last track and you got an instant classic.

9.5/10

A special note to Infected Mushroom and Skazi: This album shows the proper usage of Electric Guitar in Psy Trance. Listen and learn!

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is it orginal full on or just the same as most goatrance producers do now?

it will please you!

the first time i heard it i was working on my pc. after the first halft of the cd i tried to remember if i like the sound or not.

i couldn't remember. the only thing i knew was; it must be very good because i don't turn it off. nothing aggressive. so it was still playing.

this happens rarely with todays psytrance.

 

today i was listening again and i can say: really good music ... ... was tristan ever better before?

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was tristan ever better before?

:o

 

Check ANY of his releases before this one, especially AUDIODROME. ;)

 

As for this album, I liked the psychedelic edge, but that you expect from him, what I haven't expected is another full on seller. I don't want to brag about it anymore, I am simply giving up trance in general. I thought that after 6 yrs of expansion full on will finally start to decay, but I was wrong, full on has never been more popular and 'interesting' especially cause ALL of major trance producers switched to it. <_<

 

6/10 for album

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I heard most this album live at an outdoor party recently where Tristan headlined and didn't like it at all - sounded like shallow party music....

It is definitely party music, no doubt about that. I certainly don't agree that it's shallow in any way though, but taste differs :)

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it's by far his album imho, audiodrome had it's moments but the last one was awful.

 

for me this one was a grower not a shower, i liked it the 1st time i heard it, but it's definitely grown on me with repeated listens.

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  • 2 weeks later...

It's good and has it's moments, but am I the only one considering this is badly mastered? I own the new AMD from Nano as well and it's galaxys in between both releases from the same label (in terms of mastering).

 

puhh this annoys me really...

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it's by far his album imho, audiodrome had it's moments but the last one was awful.

 

for me this one was a grower not a shower, i liked it the 1st time i heard it, but it's definitely grown on me with repeated listens.

Same here. With every listen this album is growing on me and Im liking it more and more. B)
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The only thing that save it from getting 0/5 is that it has Tristans name behind it. Weak, uninspiring and lacking originality, just like the endless multitudes of generic trance we hear almost everyday.

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The only thing that save it from getting 0/5 is that it has Tristans name behind it. Weak, uninspiring and lacking originality, just like the endless multitudes of generic trance we hear almost everyday.

 

:o

 

Thats completely the opposite of what I would say. I really can't hear anything commercial or generic about it.

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This album is not so special in my opinion.

 

Was not moved to buy it from the samples and would not encourage somebody to do so.

 

But what a great DJ he is! Looking forward to hearing him at Glade Festival.

 

 

 

Not recommended.

 

 

 

Pedro

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I dont know, I have very mixed feelings about this album. First of all, the first few tracks sound like they have been taken of some old dat tape, shredded to normal tape and then mastered badly. Bad quality! After a few listens, it really sounds boring as well. Sorry, I had AMD/Prometheus expectations on this album, but it did not reach the 3/10 level even. Sorry Tristan.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Nothing different...the same fullon boring style

well mr. Tristan you dissapoind me!

my verdict ?/10 i have nothing to say avout it

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  • 5 weeks later...
Guest antic

I wonder if it's possible to ban people from this forum for having bad taste.

Well, I hope not (I KNOW you're joking)

 

I'm thankful for all the negative comments here, because thanks to them I had very low expectations about this album and I was very positively surprised when I received it. What I especially like here is that kind of organic, flowing structuring / arrangement of the tracks. The problem with most of today's psytrance is that it is kind of 'blocky' in structure, that it is predictable, you know with 95% confidence that after a drum roll you'll hear a break etc. This album however has a lot of surprises, both in respect of musical composition and sounds used. True it was to some extent influenced by full-on, but let's face it - if it won't at least sound a bit similar to full-on, it won't sell and get gigs. The skill is to use those full-on formulas and to make a non full-on music, if you catch my drift :) I guess Tristan here proved he can do that - even the tracks with guitars are great, although that Terrodactyl would definitely benefit from more complicated background sounds and structure. Also, I don't understand why some of you complain about production quality?! Tristan has always sounded like this - dirty, distorted, heavy and noisy sounds are his trademark. You can't expect Infected-like crystal clear production, because it wouldn't even fit the style! I also have to mention that this album is very trance-y in an old-school way. When most of today's music suffers from stop-go syndrome and abundance of breaks, Tristan gives his tracks time to develop, let's us explore the melodies - that's what trance music is all about, I guess.

 

So, it's a very good album in my book. The only complaint is the cover. And it's not about that it is bad, but about the fact that the original project (the one with blue background and colourful 'head') was 10 times better.

 

4/5

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