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Vaporized - "Human Odyssey"


DoktorG

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Vaporized Human Odyssey 2023

Digital Reprints

 

 

Human Odyssey 1

1-1Vaporized (2)–Return To The Source 12:51

1-2Vaporized (2)–Circle Of Dust 11:21

1-3Vaporized (2)–Solar Cycles 10:38

1-4Vaporized (2)–Human Odyssey 9:44

1-5Vaporized (2)–Full Moon 9:44

1-6Vaporized (2)–Silverbox 10:54

1-7Vaporized (2)–Enter The Circle 10:37

Human Odyssey 2

2-1Vaporized (2)–Return To The Source (Dig Deeper Mix) 12:51

2-2Vaporized (2)–Circle Of Dust (Red Rock Mix) 10:36

2-3Vaporized (2)–Solar Cycles (In Orbit Mix) 11:03

2-4Vaporized (2)–Red Dust 10:22

2-5Vaporized (2)–Silverbox (Acid Mix) 9:47E

2-6Kristian* & DJ Cosmix–The Vision (Vaporized Remix) 10:00

2-7Vaporized (2)–Artifact 12:22

 

This is a fascinating double album released in 2023 by Danish artist Kristian Thinning Andersen. He is most famous as Elysium, though he has a variety of other monikers. Andersen made some of the greatest Goa tracks ever in the 90s with a unique mellow, tribal, and hypnotic style. One of my personal favourites is the Sheyba ep on Flying Rhino from 1995:

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Who can forget the wolf howls in "Ancient Lands" which take the listener deep into the ancestral past. Other notable releases include Spiritual's "Ride the Snake", Kaaya's "Ormazd", Kailash's "Higher", and the two Elyzium albums Dance for the Celestial Beings (1995) and Celestial Sounds and Neurotic Tribal Beats (1997). Evocative, storytelling stuff, more for the inner journey than for 'aving it on the dancefloor, though plenty potent on the dancefloor too. 

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Rather than give a track by track formalist description, I want to try to sum up Andersen's artistic goal and the feel of his tunes, with which I'm sure many of you are familiar. Perhaps the most important thing then is to point out that if you are a fan of his work, as I am, then this is a must. Andersen has not changed his style. This is not to say that he is stuck or lacks variety or experiment or is narrow, but he simply has his own unique style that is instantly recognisable. And what a style it is - poised hovering in the liminal zone between the dancefloor and the chill out area with bpms seldom getting up into the 140s, its distinctive feature is hypnosis. In a sense, then, his music is the very essence of trance, which is a hypnotic state, a state of immersion if you will. There's a deep calm in his music, that is quite different to the ecstatic excitement, even freneticism, of a lot of trance and psytrance. It is more of a highlands plateau than the peaks and valleys of psytrance. It is likely that the Dionysian among us will not like this calm and will find this album boring. If you want high drama, crushing rhythms, major chords, frenzied build-ups, hardcore blastoff, then look elsewhere. For those who can enter this calm state, it provides the meditative bliss of relaxation and acceptance. This music creates the atmosphere in which it is best appreciated. Here are the words of the man himself: "I wanted to return to the way I think trance should be like. To me, trance is a slowly building journey on the dance floor by its hypnotizing patterns and deep soundscapes. Repetitively rhythmic to put you in a state of trance." Andersen emphasises his return to proto-Goa, which was slower and lacked the build-ups and galloping horse basslines of post-millenial psytrance. What I most appreciate about this relaxation is that it tends to grant the space for the mind to expand into fantasy - it is quite easy to be swept to far-off lands with these tunes. 

This does not mean that Vaporized lacks intensity. Intensity may be provided by tribal vibes through vocals, samples, percussion. Whilst I do miss the tribal vibes a bit on this latest album, they are still there in the background. Intensity is also provided by the microdynamics of texture and small changes. A master of texture, Andersen was always good at making sounds that ranged from silken smooth to ragged ripping. Many of his sounds, showcased by the relatively constant rotating polyrhythms in the background have more pixels per nanosecond than there are motes of dust in the Sahara (though you will need a good hifi to hear this). Part of the sonic magic is the recordings and masterings: no compression wars here and  sounds have space to breathe, do not blur together, dynamics are free. I checked out my vinyl and cds and the only information on the mastering I could find was "Prodam" and "Podam" - I searched but nothing came up. This is also true of this new work, which is also produced. This high quality recording and mastering pays off in psychoactive sound with good micro as well as macro dynamics. This is crucial to Andersen because he is very good at small changes, subtle shifts of delicate percussion, unexpected time wobbles - small changes amidst heavy repetition that can tug at your ear, especially when you are in the calm and receptive state of trance. 

There, in a nutshell, I think you have the spirit of Elysium/Vaporized: hypnotic trance. It is relatively introspective stuff that eschews drama, performativity, grandiosity, hysteria, going instead for meditative calm. This, of course, does not mean that the artist is always so calm himself. Hypnosis is also invariably haunted by the image of the zombie: who is controlling the hypnotised is the question that typically arises. Is it a corporate AI? Perhaps it is the Soviet nostalgia hackers? No, it is definitely the aliens described by Cixin Liu. Whether you are concerned about being hypnotised or not, the questions that have historically accompanied the inner path do flutter about this introspective art. Of course, this means that this is more home music than for the main floor. 

If hypnotic trance sounds appealing to you, then you won't do better than this excellent album and the stunning back catalogue behind it. ~*~

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Fantastic news Dok thanks. I'm listening to the opening track and it sounds just as excellent as his Elysium output. I love the way he builds up very unusual and strong rhythms by combining a number of different sounds. He is a master of rhythm. I agree about the texture too. Really excited to listen to the rest of this. :)

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YouTube link helloooo??? Nothing I hate more than a review that doesn't share a link to the album in the actual review it's just lazy and ignorant. Would've taken you 5 seconds to have that inside the review. 

There's ZERO ways to listen to the album you are reviewing, in your review. No YouTube, no bandcamp, no Spotify, no apple music, no nothing. God I hate that so much.

Imagine being so disrespectful to the readers of your review that you won't even take 5 seconds to actually link to the damn music you're reviewing.. 

 

Can we please make this a rule? You can't post a review if you don't also link the frigging music?? 

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8 minutes ago, astralprojection said:

YouTube link helloooo??? Nothing I hate more than a review that doesn't share a link to the album in the actual review it's just lazy and ignorant. Would've taken you 5 seconds to have that inside the review. 

There's ZERO ways to listen to the album you are reviewing, in your review. No YouTube, no bandcamp, no Spotify, no apple music, no nothing. God I hate that so much 

Dude, how long would it have taken you to copy and paste it in your own comment? I mean, you may have a fair point but why not do something positive along with it?

Yeah I know I'm grumpy too. Bad couple of days.

FWIW I hesitate to put up youtube links myself because some artists don't like it and prefer someone listens to a sample on bandcamp or similar and buys the record...

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Really nice review...
....And a little bit of drama added to keep things interested.

You can buy the release here:
https://digitalreprints.bandcamp.com/album/human-odyssey

And in the meantime check the new 2xCD Elysium's release as well :)

https://digitalreprints.bandcamp.com/album/a-journey-through-time-space

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi
yeah, we were a bit understaffed and I had my reasons, feel free to check out the Status thread if you're interested. Back now and cleaned it up quite vigorously (at least what seemed reasonable to me, which was most). It should be better from now on that we have a little people more on the team :) 

Thanks at everybody for not letting the drama escalate too much, you handled it reasonably, all of you :+1: 

No, we will not make it a rule that a review needs to include links :) 
The links always help the people that are interested - and it is nice to play the embedded video and read the text here, I give you that point. But overall, I still put good writing above all and that's well done by the Doctor here, so: no critics. 

Cheers! 

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No worries; all apologies gratefully accepted! 

I've tended to avoid youtube links in the past because so many of them are dubious in both legality and quality, but I'm happy to post bandcamp links in future. 

🙏

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