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No Difference Between Goa Trance and Psytrance?


Werge12
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Well, I personally see it like this. It was originally termed Goa trance around 1988-1994, and then renamed psychedelic trance around 1995-1996. So there both basically the same thing. Although, some fans distinguish the two like this: Goa trance is the more arabic/hindu-themed genre with arabian melodies and synths. While psychedelic trance is the more synthetic stuff. I personally don't see enough of a difference between two to classify them as two separate sub-genres of Trance. A lot of psychedelic trance/goa trance artists seem to agree with this perspective too. There are even more sub-sub-genres such as darkpsy or progressive that some fans believe should exist. I personally consider artists like Xenomorph or Dark Soho  to simply be darker sounding psytrance, but not another genre. And Astrix etc. to simply be a little progressive sounding, but still the parent genre.

How do you define a difference, or perhaps no difference between the two?

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7 hours ago, Werge12 said:

So there both basically the same thing

Have you listened to a lot of both 'genres'? 

I couldn't tell the difference at first, but now can tell pretty easily with some exceptions which straddle the line between the two. In that case I just call it Psytrance.

I wouldn't say the synthetic nature or the arabicesque melodies are the differences. Goa is pretty distinct from Psytrance in a lot of ways, although I couldn't accurately say how. I guess the instruments used? The specific acid lines and song structure + kickdrums. If you listen to someone like Artha or Celestial Intelligence and then compare that to Astrix or Burn in Noise, you will find them pretty different and distinct I'm sure.

The sub genres while maybe not being perfect descriptors of a specific artists style are useful if you want to set a mood. If everything was just Psytrance you would never know what preferred style you might get. Imagine taking your techno friends to a 'Psytrance' event and getting hit with some Psykovsky rather than some 'Fabio & Moon'

I've seen people on Facebook rave groups describe progressive artists like Symbolic as 'a dark sound', and wonder what that person would think if you introduced them to someone like Morphic Resonance.

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14 hours ago, psychedelic chipmunk said:

I keep it simple. Goa trance is a proper sub-genre of Psytrance. It's not incredibly important for me to exhaustively define what Goa trance is. I know if it's Goa once I listen to it :)

A feeling is pretty much what it always comes down to. But can we call it a sub-genre if it birthed Psytrance?

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I think it would be fair to say that in the beginning the confusion regarding genre terminology stems from how labels chose to market the music on offer. When the Goa term became outdated and fell out of fashion, Psytrance became a more popular term. However as time passed on the music of course branched of more, and developed distinct distinguishing features.

Another way to approach it would be that in the beginnings the compilations bundled together various styles under one umbrella term (Goa). But the music was perhaps different enough to separate stylistically. Something which speaks in favour of this view, is that there was often Acid Trance tracks featured on Goa Trance compilations. Of course there's probably several contributing factors and ways to see it. The issue however persists today, with modern labels naming compilations "Goa" and so on despite beeing full-on compilations etc. So basically my impression is that it's diffuse marketing procedures which is the main culprit.

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22 minutes ago, Psychedelic Superbeast said:

But how could it happened that Psytrance transformed from a sub genre in the 90s to a mother term for all psychedelic dance music?

So where is this old Psytrance?? Is it a Case for Detective Conan?

The tracks that i postet above arent Goa Trance for sure...maybe "Goadelic Trance" or Psytrance but not classic Goa Trance. So what happened to this dark, sexy and driving Trance sub genre? 

To be honest that style is my absolute favorite of all psychedelic Dance music! 

Well for example, the first Israel's Psychedelic Trance compilation, I think everyone will agree that it's what we now call Old School/Classic Goa Trance. So it was just how it was marketed. I would love to see how for example the Hallucinogen Twisted album was marketed? Anyone has any album promo material? The terms at some points in time were used interchangeably. Which only adds to the confusion. And yes this is defintitely a case for the discogs detectives. :P 

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1 hour ago, Psychedelic Superbeast said:

But how could it happened that Psytrance transformed from a sub genre in the 90s to a mother term for all psychedelic dance music?

in the 90s people used the terms pretty interchangably. some called the music goa trance when played in goa and psychedelic trance when played elsewhere.

goa trance originated in parties in goa obviously, but when the newer styles evolved elsewhere in the world (and needed a different name) the term psytrance was used widely where they were played.

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in the end doesn't really matter what we call it, i think the main styles are quite evident, ie goa, full on, dark, prog etc
all sub genres of music are ultimatley created by media/marketing to sell it/ describe it to the people, think about other genres, when does drum n bass cease to be and become breaks/dub step etc
when does rock/hard rock become metal? to you metal heads death metal can be blured sometimes to say grindcore, as there are some bands that sit in the middle so how does it become defined, treat goa the same and this dilemma will go away, personally i pondered this for awhile then thought does it really matter?

 

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10 hours ago, Tsotsi said:

But can we call it a sub-genre if it birthed Psytrance?

I don't see a problem with that. A certain style of music took on a wider spectrum of interpretations and spawned other sub-genres. We can refer to them collectively as Psytrance. For instance, Cassandra's Nightmare is Goa trance, but it inspired a wholly different sub-genre. I don't know all the details behind darkpsy, though.

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Ive always thought of it like this. Psychedelic Trance is the mother genre, then we have goatrance as one sub and also psytrance as another. Yes that becomes a bit confusing since both share the same name; but they are indeed two different things.

for example goa is like astral while psy is like infected. Of course thats just how i have looked at it personally for all these years. I dont remember anyone even calling it "psytrance" until a bit later, early 2000s i think. But maybe we did call some stuff "psy" even earlier than that... Hard to remember.

Anyway i think "psytrance" as a genre is mother to sub-genres like dark, forest, tech, etc. While Goa and "Psy" has always been slightly distinct flavors under the matriarch; "Psychedelic Trance". 

makes sense to me at least :)

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  • 3 weeks later...
On 8/26/2020 at 2:36 PM, Psychedelic Superbeast said:

Agreeeeeee!

you mentioned astral projection...just out of couriosity:

 

would you mix for example "Darshan - Tranceformations" in "Astral Projection - Kabbalah" in your DJ Set?

Or "Satori - Razor" in "Menis - Fluff Killer"?

yes and yes :)

 

edit: but i know what youre getting at. theyre different styles or flavors of the same genre; and would you mix and match freely or would you stick with a certain flavor within a set. I think thats your question pretty much? And I think its great to mix alot of different flavors within one set! Caters to different people but also brings in new energies.

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I've played Astral Projection and Derango in the same DJ set, one after the other :D
Properly melodic fullon (meaning: as little cheese as possible) and modern goa trance go well hand in hand (yes, I've tried that)
Forest from the more melodic end and goa trance from the darker end of the spectrum also go well hand in hand (yes, I've also tried that)

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  • 1 year later...
On 8/26/2020 at 12:10 PM, astralprojection said:

Ive always thought of it like this. Psychedelic Trance is the mother genre, then we have goatrance as one sub and also psytrance as another. Yes that becomes a bit confusing since both share the same name; but they are indeed two different things.

for example goa is like astral while psy is like infected. Of course thats just how i have looked at it personally for all these years. I dont remember anyone even calling it "psytrance" until a bit later, early 2000s i think. But maybe we did call some stuff "psy" even earlier than that... Hard to remember.

Anyway i think "psytrance" as a genre is mother to sub-genres like dark, forest, tech, etc. While Goa and "Psy" has always been slightly distinct flavors under the matriarch; "Psychedelic Trance". 

makes sense to me at least :)

Me personally, I listen to Goa Trance for more than 10 years now - mostly exclusively - and I can clearly distinguish between what is called "Goa Trance" and all of the about 10 other sub-genres of Goa / Psy music (Full-On, Proggy, Dark etc.)
I can hear the differences in all of these styles very clearly so thats why I chose to listen to Goa Trance :D

So here's what I guess are the main differences:

1. Goa-Trance in my opinion is the mother of Psy-Trance. Its originating from Goa - India and if you compare it with old-school Techno like Acid-Techno it sounds almost the same.

2. You will hardly find such hypnotic rhythms elsewhere in Psytrance, like they are present in Goa Trance. These "high frequencies" are widely called "Acid Lines". What I discovered is, that nowadays many people have problmes with tuning in that sound and experience its potential. I explain it like this: the music got more and more Bass-orientated, so people actually forgot how to interpret these "crazy and wild" tunes - a bass is much simpler to dance and move to.

3. You will discover, when you listen to different stlyes, that all of them have their BPM-Area, they are mostly active in. So for Goa-Trance I assume the area from 137-147bpm is most common. And now theres a ad-on i have to make: there's also something like "Neo-Goa-Trance" - a lot of this tribal and acid-line based music is coming out in the past few years, with better synths etc. This new Goa-Trance is also including speeds up to 160 BPM and still sound super hypnotic. For example you can check out "Triquetra" or "Mindsphere" to get an impression of this described style.

4. The original Goa-Trance clearly and mostly had influences from India directly. So if you ever have been there (as I was) you will clearly get what I'm talking about. In my opinion All (at least 90%) of the modern Goa / Psy music is missing this element which makes them sound a bit more based and simpler. I can hear in most Goa-Trance Tracks 1-3 "different but harmonius" Lines at once!

What do I mean by saying this? Modern Psy mostly plays the main theme and all of the different lines work together to form that main theme. Same for Goa-Trance, BUT they are many times that much complex, that some lines like Bass, Mids and Highs could go for themselves, as they have different themes (at times) and harmoniously work together to create a super (weird?) and crazy piece of art! For example: check out "Hallunicogen" who is a true master of Goa-Trance music and has, in my opinion, reached a hardly compareable level of understanding in hypnotic trance.

 

I'm open for different opinions, but I had to share my thoughts, due to my passion for this incredible sub-genre of Psy-Music.

Every one should get in touch with this, 'cause that's where all Psy is coming from (except Psy-Rock, which was actually prior to Goa-Music).
 

Thanks for reading & I hope I could get it more clear.
Peace :)

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  • 2 weeks later...

Goa to me is melodic, psy trance seems....rather more... harmonically manipulated synth sound effects... rather than melody, maybe a few Phrygian note phrases. Psy trance for me is characterized by the ever used and relied on kick and bass, I still really like it. The bass is saw wave repetitive acid, very highly refined with emphasis on bass and mid range. I realized this is essentially an acid sound one morning when I heard a track with the normal KbBB bass was performed by something that sounded very much like a TB-303, the tent I passed I had to go in and dance it was great ! The tonality was superb although less controlled timing than a simple bass sample or a modern soft synth with phase reset/retrig. (has a more wild, running away feel to it)

The 303 style bass has a more "wet" liquiddy sound to its filter sweep.

This track gets close to the sound.. in fact it may possibly have been this track, it was 6 years ago so I cannot recall exactly.

 

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