Aug 5, 2010

Tor.Ma In Dub – Jump High (From the Roots to the Stars)

There is lots of dub similar to this released these days. While none of it is particularly bad, most of it is pretty average, or better yet forgettable, rarely getting plays in my library after the first 2 or 3 listens. I never even heard of the artist so I was expecting a very average album, Tor.Ma in Dub’s new album was actually a very nice surprise. It is very heavy dub and very psychedelic which is a very good thing because the psychedelic vibes present make it more interesting. While not really innovative, I don’t think it was meant to be. It’s a perfect album for just chilling out, put it on repeat, lie down and forget about everything else. The breaks track at the end is kind of interesting as well.
After having it for over one month and listening to tons of different music everyday, I keep coming back to it very often. Good album that does its job just the way I like it.

Final grade: 7/10

Pros: Great overall mood

Cons: Nothing new or especially different about this album


Label: Beats & Pieces
Country: Israel
Released: 15 Mar 2010

Genre: Psydub


Aug 3, 2010

Darkpsy Adventure

Last week I realized I know almost nothing about darkpsy, a genre that has always seemed interesting to me, but I never got around to actually checking it out. Well except for Blisargon Demogorgon, whose music I always liked and even that did not push me to delve deeper into the genre back in the day. I rarely listen to trance these days, some goa now and then, but I abandoned that genre a while back so checking darkpsy was sort of like going back to where I came from in my musical evolution.
I got three albums by three different artists: Tumult by Derango, Waves From Innerspace by Kindzadza and Da Budet by Psykovsky. 

Derango – Tumult
First of I have to say Derango is a great name for a darkpsy project. Just perfect. That’s what got my attention in the first place. That, and also the fact that Derango always seemed to be one of the most praised projects of the darkpsy sphere.
This album contains some of the most evil and twisted music I’ve ever heard. It makes you feel like you’re being dragged through a forest path in the middle of the night and the path is full of thorns, rocks and evil creatures that follow you the entire way. And it doesn’t end well. As you progress on your trip it just gets darker and more hopeless. Very, very climatic, I must admit.
Unlike in some cases the samples are perfectly blended in. If anything deserves the label dark psychedelic trance it is definitely this album. The only minus might be that none of the tracks really stand out, it’s a solid album, but no real “hits” on it. Maybe after more listens it will become clearer.

Rating: 4/5

Kindzadza – Waves From Innerspace
I chose Kindzadza because of its high popularity on For a darkpsy project of course.
Waves from Innerspace is definitely a ligher album than Tumult. The sounds are not as twisted, not so evil sounding. There is a bit more variation here though, beat pace changes quite often, and there are some melodies here and there. Overall though I have to say this is not as good as Derango’s album. It’s a good release, but I’m guessing this is pretty
much standard darkpsy. No fireworks, just solid dark psytrance.
Rating: 3.5/5

Psykovsky – Da Budet
For the last release I decided to follow tags and checked what came up for the tag forest psytrance. Psykovsky wasn’t on top but the name caught my attention. I decided to get the second album because it is purely him here and on Debut he included several remixes and collaborations.
This album is very varied. Even more variations in the beat pace than Kindzadza, really excellent voice samples and dark atmosphere is what makes it great in my opinion. At times it sounds chaotic, but in a good way, very keeps your attention to the music. Unlike with the previous two albums, here the tracks stand out a lot, each one having something specific to offer. In my opinion the deeper you get into the album the tracks get better and better. The Indian prayer (I guess it is a prayer) at the end of the final track was a really nice surprise.
Very interesting art work for this one, I like it a lot.

Rating: 4.5/5

After touching the tip of the darkpsy iceberg I have to say I am hooked! It is definitely not something I would listen to everyday, or at least not long periods of time, but it is definitely very good stuff. Possibly the darkest music I have ever listened to, hard to believe people put it under the same label as all the fluffy trance, not to mention all the pop Tiesto and company release these days. I would say that besides goa (new or old), this is the most interesting sub genre of psytrance. Fans of evil and twisted stuff should not miss this.

Blog and YouTube Channel News

Hello everyone! I'm considering changing the look and possibly the name of my blog too something different. The look seems kind of boring to me and the name not really accurate so I'll work on that tonight.
For those of you who follow my YouTube channel I think I owe some explanations. It is on hold once again. I won't be home for some time and over here my internet connection is extremely weak and unstable so any attempts at adding videos fail. I decided to stop fighting with it and just wait until I have a better connection once again and I'll go back to posting videos like back in the day and hopefully for a longer period this time around. Sorry for that.

Jul 20, 2010

Artist Recommendation: Globular

Globular was recommended to me on From looking at his profile I expected just another artist starting out, nothing spectacular, but nothing bad either. Globular is on the plus side though, his music is really great, especially for fist releases. He is basically what you would get if you took Shpongle’s first album, mashed it together with Ott’s music and added a pinch of darkness.

I really like the dub vibe on both albums. It is not too dominant like it happens with Ott sometimes, it just blends in very nicely. Most of his tracks are pretty long, probably longer than psychill average. They develop slowly, get you in the mood and do their magic. It surely isn’t the most complicated music in the genre, it’s pretty basic, but the production quality and the mood created stand out. I really didn’t expect a project like this to have such great samples and overall quality, great job.

The minus might be that some might say they have heard this before. It is true Globular is nothing new, sound similar to artists that might have influenced them, but it is still a real treat to hear his music. Plus after just eight tracks released we can expect much more to come and then we can see what direction is his music going and see how it’s changing.

Quick reviews of the two releases:

Colours Of The Brainbow: Dark and mysterious is how I can describe it. Lots of Indian influences, great samples, perfect for just chilling out. 95%

In Formation: A little lighter sounding than “Colours…” The tracks are more uplifting, and psychedelic. Indian influences also present. 92%

You can download Colours Of The Brainbow for free and legally at Ektoplazm. Click to redirect.

A full length album is on the way as well. Globular is what psychedelic chillout and dub are all about and I can safely say he is the most promising new artist in these genres. Look out for news about this project here and spread the word about Globular!


Jul 15, 2010

The Flashbulb – Arboreal

I’ve only heard the tip of the iceberg as far as artists put in the IDM genre go. Kettel, Secede, Wisp, Venetain Snares and that’s pretty much it (I know, no Aphex Twin, but I will try something very soon). The Flashbulb is not new to me, I have Reunion, which was a decent album, but pretty forgettable. I decided to give his new album a listen to see what else he has to offer.

The opening track is a very beautiful piece, one of the best on the album. It sets a good mood for the journey you’re about to begin. The second track is also excellent. I especially like the vocals, they blend in perfectly. As the album goes on it gets a bit more aggressive. The tracks are not really harsh or anything, but we drift away from the melancholic pieces from the beginning. And then starting with the seventh track we go back to the calmness the album began with.

The second part of the album is pretty standard chillout, nothing innovative or that I haven’t heard before, but it sounds just beautiful. I especially like the piano and guitar throughout the album, great to hear instruments in this kind of music. The second to last song titled Skeletons has a guitar section that took me by surprise, but it was an interesting moment. I am not too fond of the vocals on this one though, they are not necessarily bad but there is something annoying about them.

Overall I am really surprised with how good this album came out to be. It has very few weak points and overall it’s a very good and relaxing release. It’s also very listenable. The first time I gave it a listen I played it three times in a row and I could do it many times more. I guess it’s more ambient than what he used to make, but he should keep on the path he’s on now. While waiting for a next album I will probably give his older releases a try and let you know what I thought of them.

Final grade: 4.2

Pros: Piano and guitar use, atmosphere

Cons: Some vocals can be annoying

1. Prayer
2. Izel
3. Out Of There
4. This Way (Live Edit)
5. Subconcious
6. Gaia
7. Times A Billion
8. Smile
9. Metamorph
10. Impulse
11. Dark Dub
12. Biocircuit
13. Raining Dub (Special Breaks Edit)

Label: Alphabasic
Country: United States
Released: 8 Jun 2010
Genre: Ambient, IDM, Chillout


Jul 14, 2010

New Solar Fields' album announced!

Good news for all Solar Fields' fans out there. A remix album of Movements titled Altered: Second Movements will be released by Ultimae on July 26th.
"Atmospheric in essence, almost beatless, the soundscapes invite the auditor to settle within and embark upon a profound floating experience. As in the reminiscence of a dream, Solar Fields subtly recalls Movements harmonies and melodies in a widely stretched manner with low resonating pads providing a soft texture upon which electrified and crunchy interferences glide."
Sounds good, I guess we can be expecting a more ambient version of Movements. Even better news is that another, regular album from him is also coming up "in a couple of months". Really great news, good to see such a great musician being so productive.

Read an interview with Solar Fields here.

Jul 13, 2010

Uruk-Hai - Elbentraum

Most projects with names taken from Tolkien’s books, maybe except for some black metal bands, are pretty cheesy. At least from the ones I’ve heard. The website promoting this album made it sound pretty interesting, and because I like both ambient and Tolkien’s writings I thought I would give it a try.

The first few seconds of this album gave me hope for something decent, but unfortunately my hopes left me after the first track progressed. It is cheesy indeed, and not really in the fun way. The music sounds a bit amateurish, like the soundtracks of early fantasy games. Pretty random sounds, bells tinkling and the “epic” and dramatic sound was not a good sign for the rest of the album.

The next two tracks are on a pretty similar level with some surprising moments, like the fast beat on Baggins for example. It all doesn’t sound so bad, but kind of like the producer forced himself to make a “fantasy”” sounding album forgetting about how the tracks sound as a whole.

As the album goes on the situation gets a little better. Song of the Ainur is decent and finally sounds like a complete track. The last track saves the album a little. It’s twenty four minutes and by far the calmest, closest to ambient on the album. It has a pretty nice atmosphere that gets a little spoiled by the tinkling again, but it’s still the best here. Overall the second part of the album is better, but not by much.

I have to say I am disappointed by this release. I was hoping for something much darker, with tracks sounding complete and well thought out. Instead we get pretty lame music, trying too hard to sound adventurous and epic. Instead of creating an atmosphere reminiscent of Tolkien’s world which it was obviously aiming at, it makes you imagine Middle Earth as a world with candy trees and pink rivers. The only time I can see myself listening to it again is as a background for an old Warcraft game or something similar. The producer behind this would be good for making soundtracks for games, only if the music is a bit calmer, more ambient and gloomy.

From what I have read Uruk-Hai’s albums vary a lot. Some can be great and some very poor. Maybe this wasn’t his best effort, but there is definitely some decent qualities here and there. When his next album comes out I will give it a try just to see how it sounds and maybe my opinion might change, but after this I will not be expecting much.

Final grade: 3/10

Pros: 90s game soundtrack music

Cons: Over the top dramatic, cheesy

1. Elbentraum
2. Laurelin
3. Baggins
4. Song Of The Ainur
5. The Mirror
6. Uruk-Hai Part 6
7. Hobbiton
8. The Glory Of A Dragon (*)

Label: none
Country: Austria
Released: 2010
Genre: Ambient


Jul 10, 2010

Evan Bartholomew - Secret Entries Into Darkness

Evan Bartholomew is better known as Bluetech. If you expect to hear something similar on this album you might be disappointed. I did, and I wasn’t as I am not am big fan of his work as Bluetech. I mean sure it sounds great, but I guess I like more organic or ethnic sounding psychill than what his albums offer us. It’s one of the few famous psychill projects that doesn’t really do it for me. Either way I expected something similar as I haven’t really read about this release before checking it out.

First of all it is not similar to Bluetech at all. This release is ambient. Very interesting ambient at that. While some ambient projects, like CBL or Solar Fields for instance are borderline psychill and others are just ambient in its purest form this is something in between. It’s very slow motion, you have time to reflect every sound. It is deep, heavy and if you forget about everything, but the music it makes you feel very unsafe. Like you’re going down some deep and forgotten cavern and you know there is nothing good waiting for you at the end of it. That is the beauty of this album for me. The atmosphere is just amazing.

The thing is you shouldn’t listen to this album as background music, or while focusing on something else because then you will not get the feeling of it. You have to take the music slowly, let yourself float together with the music and then you will be able to judge the whole thing. Otherwise it will probably sound boring, or at least just like any average ambient album.

The track titles are interesting as well. They are great descriptions of what the album is all about. I like the album art too, just like with all Somnia releases.

This is a new side of Bluetech for me and I sure liked it a lot. It certainly needs to be more popular than it is now, but I guess this kind of music is not really accessible. But for all the ambient lovers out there this should be something to look forward to.

Final Grade: 92%

Pros: Atmosphere, titles, artwork

Cons: Doesn’t always work for me, you need to be in a right setting to really enjoy it to the fullest.

1. Secret Entries Into Darkness
2. Cracks In The Fabric Of The known
3. Soft Spots In The Tyranny Of matter
4. Where Forgotten Days Slumber
5. And Ancient Hurts Dwell
6. Light Reflecting Black In Shadow

Label: Somnia
Country: United States
Released: 2008
Genre: Ambient
Artwork: Ray Massini
Mastered by: Twerk


Gonjasufi - A Sufi and a Killer

When I first heard about this album I automatically got intrigued. Something described as “experimental hip-hop combined with jazz, blues, eastern music, early electronic” had to be at least weird. Weird doesn’t have to be good, but I just had to hear it. For those who cannot stand hip-hop don’t worry, this is NOT a hip-hop album. It’s pretty much impossible to classify. Probably like nothing like you have ever heard before.
This album is an amazing journey. It’s really unbelievable how his vocals sound here. I know some might complain and say “there is so many better vocalists”, but for me that is not the point at all. Here it’s all about the emotions he puts into each track, how his voice fits the music perfectly. This is seriously one of the most passionate examples I ever heard. While the vocal is probably the best thing about this album it wouldn’t be the same without the background. The beat, guitar playing even the cracking sound on some of the tracks sound just great, each track sounds like it has been worked on for very long amounts of time, just to make them as perfect as they are now. Another plus for me are the mentioned eastern influences heard on some tracks. They add a nice flavor.

If you take all the styles you can hear on this album and list them on paper they have no right to work together. Gonjasufi managed for that to happen, enhanced everything with his vocal and released what is the best album of the year so far.

Pros: Vocals, eastern influences, I can play it on repeat and it just doesn’t get boring.

Cons: The long silence during the last track and the hidden outro, I’ve never liked that kind of thing.

Rating: 97%

02. Kobwebz
03. Ancestors (*)
04. Sheep (*)
05. She Gone. (*)
06. SuzieQ
07. Stardustin'
08. Kowboyz&Indians (*)
09. Change
10. Duet
11. Candylane
12. Holidays
13. Love Of Reign
14. Advice
15. Klowds
16. Ageing
17. DedNd
18. I've Given
19. Made (*)

Label: Warp Records
Country: United Kindom
Released: 8 Mar 2010

Official Website
Warp Records

News about the future of this blog

Hello everyone. It's been a long time since I last posted. I am getting back to it now, with just reviews for now and later on I'll start adding news items like I used to. I am also working on a music website where you'll be able to find everything from this blog and more. It's still in the works and I'm not sure when will it be available, but hopefully in about two weeks. It will be basically a place for reviews, recommendations, news etc. focusing on similar genres as this blog. When it's ready I'll post both here and there. For now I'll post two new reviews I have ready in a minute.