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Artha - Influencing Dreams

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Templar    58

Artha - Influencing Dreams

 

Cronomi Records, 2010

 

Posted Image

 

1. Dubber Nubber

2. Controlled (Live Version)

3. Chaos

4. Saikol

5. Mystic Change

6. Vocal Distortion

7. Bali

8. Transfusion

9. Insidelamp

 

Finally it happened. Well, it had to happen. After years of expectations from the moment when I first heard the track called "Controlled", the debut album of Artha finally found its way onto my shelf and into my CD-player. The only album I awaited more eagerly was probably the third Hallucinogen's album, which is the equivalent of "Duke Nukem Forever" or "Lethal Weapon 4". Artha, undeniably one of the cornerstones of Polish psytrance, it's not just some random guy, so Cronomi Records made an exceptionally good move by deciding to add him to the team. Artha had a difficult task, because everything below a very good album would be a disappointment, but after taking his talent into consideration, disappointment was not an option. As one might expect, Michał's debut album throws a good punch to the face and shouts: "Hey, psytrance is not dead yet - it’s alive & kicking!"

 

We are introduced with the world of Artha's music by a more laid-back "Nubber Dubber," where people not familiar with the sound of his music can leave their jaws on the floor, while the old timers will feel at home. Although the track lasts less than seven minutes, Artha managed to do wonders and surprises with frequent changes of themes. An excellent example of easiness in manipulating with psytrance may be the moment before the fourth minute, which due to the change of time signature reminded me of " Hallucinogen - Horrorgram". Pretty soon I got to enjoy one of the greatest treats on the disc - the epic "Controlled" is the first Artha track I have ever heard. Here we received it in a live version, so I was very curious how he attempted to present this classic, which like most other classic is best to be labeled with "do not touch." It is always easy to fuck it up, but who will do a better remix of such a track, if not its creator himself? It turned out that the metamorphosis exceeded my expectations, though obviously I still prefer the original version. Fans of the original will find here all the elements which they have enjoyed years ago, but delivered in a fast and modern re-do. In time the track surprises with a morph into heavy Shpongle-like vibes, which only whets the appetite for slower productions under the Artha moniker. Of course, this peaceful moment of the track just tranquilized the listener in a great way, because after a while the tune is back on track and its power returns with double force. "Chaos" from its first moments rises to the rank of one of the best tracks on the album. After an interesting introduction with an obligatory pinch of posfordisms it develops in a right way, pushing pedal to the medal. Artha did not fail in creating an interesting background full of different sonic surprises to measure his biggest inspiration, namely Hallucinogen. Particularly noteworthy is the extremely crafty ending of the track, which underlines the talent of Michał. One can experience a multitude of goose-bumps with the advent of "Saikol". The level of its acidity makes the track go hand in hand with tunes by Green Nuns Of The Revolution, who were not cutting on those beloved TB-303 sounds. "Mystic Change" pours honey over the hearts of oldschool fans, where they will be treated many times with large portions of sonic tricks from years back, among which one can find the ever-popular acidic spikes. Moreover, the sounds which appear before the fourth minute add incredible quasi-oriental aesthetics to the whole thing. No less acidic is the "Vocal Distortion" track, which at times resembles heavily Infected Mushroom tracks from the times of "The Gathering", with the comparison being a complement. The mega-optimistic "Bali" track is another bright spot on the album, where Artha skillfully applies theme changes. Due to its party-vibe qualities, the track should quickly find its place in many DJ sets. "Transfusion" injects some interesting sounds into the speakers in the form of a rather ominous introduction, to continue by unleashing acidic fantasy and releasing melodies which remind of old PC adventure games. "Insidelamp" is the last track on the album and also a summary of everything that happened in a neat and more calm package, made with a similar pedantry as the previous tracks. Overall it is an acidic, trance variation on the style in the vein of the Arabian nights. One can hear that Artha feels also very comfortable with creating slower trance tracks, as it is with faster psy-killers. After the track ends one can feel an irritating craving for more, but that is just the way it is with all good things.

 

One can listen to the album from start to finish, without a moment's boredom. All tracks, without any exceptions, are well arranged, with Michał confronting in all of them various themes and moods, which melt and join in one point, thus creating an interesting whole. Just like Filteria is compared to Pleiadians and Talpa to Infected Mushroom (the old Infected Mushroom of course), Artha can be safely compared to Hallucinogen. Still, I would like to mention that these are just musical references and inspirations, not copying of the great ones, because they all developed their own style. Michał combined the old and new sounds in such a skillful way that he got rid of time borders in his music, owing to which it will still be up-to-date in the following years to come. It does not matter whether somebody is an old timer of the music, having listened to Dragonfly Records and Transient Records output with flushed cheeks years ago, or has been a trance listener for only a few days, the listening experience will be similar. The album is a perfect remedy for those who are angry on Simon Posford for the fact that instead of sweating in the studio and recording amazing psytrance bombs he comes up every now and then with chillout-experimental-rockish ballads under Shpongle and Younger Brother guises. The album is also living proof that this genre of electronic music still delivers. Because of the album's quite oldschool overtones, "Influencing Dreams" also embarrasses the majority of many goa trance releases which have been popping out for some time lately, which, lets be honest, not only are homogenous and repetitive, but also started again to deplete of ideas. I will add that although one can find here bold connections to goa trance, Artha has been above this label years ago - and rightly so. One thing is certain: the creator of this album will surprise us with other great releases. It is advised to find answers to what or where is psychedelic trance here. Remember about this album when choosing the best releases this year.

 

Links:

 

http://www.psyshop.com/shop/CDs/crm/crm1cd003.html

http://www.arthamusic.com

http://www.cronomi.com

http://www.ektoplazm.com/free-music/artha-fluori-dolby-ep/ - grab Artha's debut single for free!

http://www.myspace.com/insidelamp

http://www.psytrance.pl

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Penzoline    326

This album has so many amazing moments that it's stupid to even try to count them. The atmospheres, moods, sounds, melodies are all very much psychedelic and dream-like. Extraordinaire. Created in the depths of one's mind. A complete breath of fresh air in a dust filled room that is the norm. You can definitely hear Hallucinogen/sphongle influence in Artha's music, but Artha didn't copy and paste, he created something new. Another thing Artha innovated was the bassline's rhythms. The whole album has this distinct style of very deep and dark bassline, but it's rhythms keep changing throughout, it's amazing what he did with it. The effects aren't just bleeps and bloops either.

 

Influencing Dreams is goa-trance made into psychedelic again. Most modern 'psytrance' and this are worlds apart. The other is predictable, cheesy, repetitive even very much annoying, but the other on the other hand, is always changing, dynamic, interesting, has a ton of of soul and power. The latter one is Artha. It should be reverse, but it isn't. I only hope Artha's debut will, literally, influence others artists dreams to innovate, rather than conform to the norm that has been going on for a long time now. I highly suggest you take the time, put headphones on, close your eyes and let this album take you with it. There isn't a moment of bad here. Thank you Cronomi, thank you Artha.

 

Can't think of a better way to start a new decade, really.

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Trance2MoveU    342

Alright, I thought it was time for me to weigh in on this. You would be hard pressed to find an album that was more anticipated and loaded with hype than this. When this guy creates goa, he shreds. So it stands to reason that this disc is really on the top of a lot of people's list.

 

Starting with the cover, I love the colors, but it is a slice of ridiculous. A big headed face with numerous eyes on the top of his head? And what's with the hair on his back? :blink: Is he even human? Corny and nonsensical.

 

The music, well that is what is important. If you are expecting a full fledged goa album, you will be disappointed. This is more psytrance tinged with goa flavor. For that reason alone it might require more listens than you were expecting. That said, what he has created is interesting. The tunes are not your repetitive go nowhere tracks, but ones that evolve and switch focus. You have chants, varying basslines, and swirling melodies. Each listen I discover something I missed before, and that is the sign of hard work and a depth to me. But the melodies are not the over the top or in your face layer rich stuff you get from Suntrip. I love what they bring, but this is different. It's more subtle in its goa machinations, but that doesn't make them any less powerful or atmospheric. Subliminal comes to mind.

 

I think this album is good at what it does. It is clever, never boring, and entertaining. I don't think this album can compare to most of the new school goa discs that have been released. E-mantra? Way better. Radical Distortion? Not even close. Filteria? Please. It is totally different music so it's comparing apples to oranges. But I don't think it's aim was to be a barnstorming take no prisoners disc of goa domination. Take this for what it is. Good psytrance with goa flavor that has lots of twists and turns along with some kick to make you move. Very enjoyable. Great job Cronomi!

 

Mdk

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Aeros    0

This album turns the page. I can't stress its awesomeness enough.

 

More words than that are not necissary.

 

On the critical side of things, album is 1/3 artha sound, 1/3 hallucinogen, 1/3 old infected mushroom.

 

I can pass on the old infected mushroom (I am over it, grungy guitar vibe = cheese for me), like the bali track. but that is my taste and does not subtract from the quality of this music.

 

Artha is doing his own thing, and he is doing good. I am putting this CD in the goa pile at home, and happy that my goa pile does not sound all the same thing.

 

 

Attention please...

THIS! --> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qOhNYKuExIw&fmt=18

 

Now buy the album.

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Flappersus    0

This album turns the page. I can't stress its awesomeness enough.

 

More words than that are not necissary.

 

 

Jep, that's exactly my feelings too

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PortaMento    0

Finally got my copy a few days ago. I had already downloaded the EP and the Chaos track, so my expectations where high. And I was not disappointed.

I listen to music with heart and brain, so to speak. On one hand there's the subjective impression - whether the style, melodies etc. fit my taste and put me in the right mood. On the other hand I can't help analyzing the craft behind it, trying to figure out how everything is made, since I make music myself.

I'm a big fan of Simon Posford and I gotta say Artha is one of very few artists that can deliver an album which gives me a similar listening experience.

Not because his music sounds exactly like Hallucinogen. The inspiration is clear, but this album certainly stands on it's own.

No, the biggest similarity for me, is that I can listen through a whole album and not even for a second consider skipping a track, because even if a track goes in a direction that doesn't entirely fit my taste, the pure quality of the craftsmanship keeps me entertained and curious to hear more!

This album is a blast to listen to and I have the greatest respect for the brain behind it.

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frozen dream    20

it's cool music but it's also hideously mastered

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it's cool music but it's also hideously mastered

 

Have you heard both the unmastered and the mastered versions?

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Ormion    405

Cool album, but way too Hallucinogen-ish for my taste.

3/5

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Padmapani    348

Hallucinogen-ish

 

this will be a sacrilege to some, but in all honesty i must say that i find this better than twisted.

still the cover is truly horrible...

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Lemmiwinks    35

So it's finally here... I think I've come across some unreleased Artha already round 2005 (possibly even earlier) and it totally blew me away. First of all, his sound, the melodies and synth presets are truly unique, whenever a DJ played an Artha track at a party I'd just know it was his, even if I didn't know it, and that in itself is quite a performance in today's generic trance world. When the first newschool releases arrived I just couldn't understand how the hell this guy could not get a record deal since I found his stuff was light years ahead of other newschool that was released. I remember having personally posted stuff on psynews pleading the Suntrip crew to give him a try but I've never got any replies :(

 

Anyway, fast-forward a few years later and we're finally here ;) Of course, the main worry with such long-awated albums is that by the time they're finally here, people's expectations are so high that they end up being dissapointed, so I admit I was a bit skeptic of actually putting this in my cd-player. But I'm glad I did in the end ;)

 

The opener is Dubber Nubber which is a nice midtempo intro track with some nice djembés and arpegiated voice samples, but doesn't really have the caracteristics of the Artha sound. A nice melody builds up near the end, but still, nothing quite spectacular.

 

Then comes Controlled ah now that's more like it. From the very first minutes you could hear those trademark synth presets, noone quite does it like Artha. Nice warmer but you can feel that there's still room to do more.

 

Chaos up next which is... chaosy... it sounds too random to my ears, don't really like it.

 

Saikol is the one that has the most full-on elements, the beginning doesn't sound great but there's a nice buildup to a good melody in the end, a pretty rockish pad in there (I suppose this is what the other reviewers think of when saying that there's a bit of an old IM sound in there)

 

Mystic Change gives us a more laid-back and melodic feeling, not quite what I was used to from the artist... but it's also the best track here IMO! And that last part with the 303 melody is just superb! One of the best tracks I've heard all year!

 

Vocal Distortion sounds a LOT like Hallucinogen's old stuff I mean if I didn't know The Lone Deranger by heart already I would've thought this was taken from there. That said, I don't really like it when an artists tries too hard to sound like someone else so I don't really like this one.

 

Bali gives us again a more laid-back and melodic feeling, and a nice trademark Artha melody in the end around 8:00, in the beginning it sounds wierd but then the more you listen to it it really starts making sense, it's very nice.

 

Tranfusion is like THE definition of morning goa IMO, that breakdown around 4:15 and the subsequent buildup mmm that's what goatrance is all about to me.

 

Then comes the closer (already :( ) Insidelamp which is on the downtempo side of things. Again, this isn't really the kind of thing I'd expect from Artha but it works out pretty well in the end. The melody around 3:00 OMG, and the progression afterwards, even more OMG!!

 

THE GOOD: Unique style, unique synth presets and unique melodies (and what melodies!!). In a trance world where it seems to be the norm to sound like everyone else this is a VERY welcome change.

 

THE BAD: Having been used to Artha's old unreleased tracks I must say that I'm a bit dissapointed by the relative lack of energy compared with his older stuff. How come DNA isn't on this album? That was his absolute best IMO.

 

CONCLUSION The second-best trance album I've heard so far this year (Alienapia being the first). Not all the tracks are great but there are definately some gems in there. I can only hope other newschool artists will abandon their preset FL Studio melodies and plugins and search for more originality the same way Artha does ;) 5/5

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Ormion    405

After some listens I have to lower the score to 2/5.

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After some listens I have to lower the score to 2/5.

 

I am in agreement, maybe 2.5/5. This album has a lot of great melodic hooks, but song compositions are far from spectacular. The transition from one part of the track to another is often painfully obvious - you often have the feeling of "now comes this part, and then comes another with some new melodies", there is no flawless journey. Also, I think most tracks just fizzle out at the end instead of evolving, and some tracks have very interesting energies at the start but become bores quickly, such as "Mystic Charge" and "Vocal Distortion". There are some positives also however. As mentioned, there are a lot of great melodies, danceable qualities and I'm sure a lot of people simply will not find that my critique holds true at all since it is slightly abstract.

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Ormion    405

I am in agreement, maybe 2.5/5. This album has a lot of great melodic hooks, but song compositions are far from spectacular. The transition from one part of the track to another is often painfully obvious - you often have the feeling of "now comes this part, and then comes another with some new melodies", there is no flawless journey. Also, I think most tracks just fizzle out at the end instead of evolving, and some tracks have very interesting energies at the start but become bores quickly, such as "Mystic Charge" and "Vocal Distortion". There are some positives also however. As mentioned, there are a lot of great melodies, danceable qualities and I'm sure a lot of people simply will not find that my critique holds true at all since it is slightly abstract.

 

Well to be honest I think I would vote for 2.5/5 as well.

The things I don't like is that it sounds way too Hallucinogen style for me which was never my favorite. I also find the melodies forgettable or a bit cheesy (not the good cheesy kind).

The tracks are all well crafted, but they can't keep me interested and they are anti-climactic (something that the whole new school scene suffers from IMO).

Also there is way too much reverb!

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Lemmiwinks    35

I am in agreement, maybe 2.5/5. This album has a lot of great melodic hooks, but song compositions are far from spectacular. The transition from one part of the track to another is often painfully obvious - you often have the feeling of "now comes this part, and then comes another with some new melodies", there is no flawless journey. Also, I think most tracks just fizzle out at the end instead of evolving, and some tracks have very interesting energies at the start but become bores quickly, such as "Mystic Charge" and "Vocal Distortion". There are some positives also however. As mentioned, there are a lot of great melodies, danceable qualities and I'm sure a lot of people simply will not find that my critique holds true at all since it is slightly abstract.

 

 

You sir, have obviously lived in a cave for the last 5 years and never heard a full-on or dark psy release in your life. If you think this has painfully obvious progression then what about like 99% of the tracks released today?

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You sir, have obviously lived in a cave for the last 5 years and never heard a full-on or dark psy release in your life. If you think this has painfully obvious progression then what about like 99% of the tracks released today?

 

Mate, you think Astral Projection - Joy is worth 3/5, of course this is godly to you. You're a sucker for melodies and that's fine with me. Personally, I'm not that easily enchanted, and I don't think these tracks are structured very well, regardless of how bad most full-on music may be (I certainly agree that it is).

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disappointment - nothing special and original here.. this album has the structure of an ordinary full on release with few goa elements - the melodies are boring dont evolve and tracks dont really have the "soul" and the atmosphere of a so called "masterpiece" like it was said here.. dont get me wrong - artha has lots of talent and his older tracks were excellent (this is why people were expecting this albums so much) but sorry guys IMO this one is in the buttum of the new school goa list of mine...

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Djuna    77

disappointment - nothing special and original here.. this album has the structure of an ordinary full on release with few goa elements - the melodies are boring dont evolve and tracks dont really have the "soul" and the atmosphere of a so called "masterpiece" like it was said here.. dont get me wrong - artha has lots of talent and his older tracks were excellent (this is why people were expecting this albums so much) but sorry guys IMO this one is in the buttum of the new school goa list of mine...

 

What older tracks then? Because Saikol (and some others) are tracks that are a couple of years old...

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Penzoline    326

What older tracks then? Because Saikol (and some others) are tracks that are a couple of years old...

 

Anathema, Genetic Formula and Mahabharta I think.

 

All the other older tracks were released on Influencing Dreams and Fluoro Dolby..

 

this album has the structure of an ordinary full on release with few goa elements

 

Going by this, I would almost go as far as saying you're just a troll.

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Lemmiwinks    35

Mate, you think Astral Projection - Joy is worth 3/5, of course this is godly to you. You're a sucker for melodies and that's fine with me. Personally, I'm not that easily enchanted, and I don't think these tracks are structured very well, regardless of how bad most full-on music may be (I certainly agree that it is).

 

 

hehehe yeah I agree that I'm a sucker for melodies, IMO goatrance was ALL about the melodies back in the days :) But anyways, what 2010 release would deserve 4/5 or higher in your opinion, then? Just curious...

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hehehe yeah I agree that I'm a sucker for melodies, IMO goatrance was ALL about the melodies back in the days :) But anyways, what 2010 release would deserve 4/5 or higher in your opinion, then? Just curious...

 

Well I think this album should be judged in a broader context than just 2010, but as far as this year goes, not many. Psyfactor - Futurised for sure, maybe Kino Oko, also I hear good things about the new Load album and latest from Goasia, I'm sure there are more.

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HappyHorse    182

the point of this CD wasn't to get a 5/5 on discogs or good review from us wierdos on psynews; i'm pretty sure :) let's face that!?

 

second; when I've got the promo months ago, I had the idea "what the fuck is this?" it took me 2 weeks to really get into it, and see the suttle flow of many many details into this intelligent designed music. took me 1 year to understand kox box - dragon tales - funny!

 

though i'm collecting psy over 11 years almost now: I can see this is no rubbish: what ever people rate it on discogs: frankly: why should we care? it's all about how you try to understand and fully experience the music as the artist intented us to do: can't you, to bad, re-sale it - haha: no, I thinkw e are critical to new skool a bit too much: being critical just because it's new: being critical because of being critical (imo): all the old skool wasn't that good: well, even not now and it'll never be: but compare this with the 100% old skool and this is at least better than 85% of all old skool stuff made, no? or is Artha such a stupoid guy? who knows he is retarted, as I must read some comments on the CD. Well maybe try and make a rmx album this; make it better ;)

 

now, my point is just: don't fight over taste, doens't really makes this Cd go away, or doesn't make the pro's or the cons disappear suddenly :)

 

at Cronomi we think this CD is a good perseption of what the "new" in new skool should be: sure there will be pro and cons, but that doens't matter I think. we all try and buld up a scne that is nice: kepe your pros and copns civilicied :)

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