Nystagmus - The Immaculate Perception (Sundance)

damion

Pound Shop Alex Petridis
Nystagmus
The Immaculate Perception
Sundance (Australia)

Blimey. And fuck. And then Blimey again. Concept album, anyone? This is one of the deepest and most succulent albums in some time, and I cant think of anything else that’s come close. Roughly speaking, the sound is like a more intricate Talpa, or a more imaginative old-era Infected Mushroom before they said “hey whats this, it’s a microphone, okay cool let’s plug it in†and sent the world of psytrance generally in the direction of six-year-old bacon. Ananda opens out with a massive string intro, and when the 4-4 drops it’s very unexpected. The cuts and sweeps are also all about taking you by surprise, and it’s enough of a rollercoaster to listen to the thing, let alone dance to it on this week’s trendiest combination of designer psychedelics (tea and vitamins this week, I think.) Tommy Is Dead is a wonderful tune, one of the only tunes in recent years that I’ve played for a roomful of people and we’ve all sat around pissing ourselves laughing at the sample, then chinstroking at the production. It’s a long, long sample from what sounds like an old US drug-propaganda flick, telling how a promising young student loses the plot on acid. The music feeds off the dialogue perfectly; and so far I’ve said nothing about one of the most evil, menacing, wonderfully simple riffs this side of Gamma Goblins. Things That You Don’t Wanna Do is a great little snip from Bill Cosby Talks To The Kids About Drugs, for which he won a Grammy in 1971 (it’s true, fact fans.) Nystagmus drops a lot of these in, cheeky drug-related samples that form mini-tracks in between the full-length tunes. At first I wasn’t convinced about them, but the trick is to listen to what’s going on in the background… They’re all hilarious and ought to keep the rest of the psytrance world in samples for a long time yet. It’s with You’re Messed Up that things start to get really tasty. This is purely the best track Infected Mushroom never got around to making, or they’d wish they could have made. It moves in a similar way to stuff on The Gathering, but for my money it has much more soul, much more substance, much more gnarl. And of course, the bang up to date production makes it especially sweet. Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitor takes the foot off the accelerator (if such a thing is possible at 147bpm). It’s spacious, and the sounds float in and out almost of their own accord. Once again the arpeggios and changes are reminiscent of Infected, but with a kaleidoscopic restraint that had always been beyond their reach. The Marijuana Cigarette is more sampled propaganda with some amusing samples in the background, before we kick off into Weird Noises which – dare I say it – does exactly what it says on the tin. The production here is superb: a better word for “production†would be conceptualisation. The sounds here are just staggering, with orchestra first, then beefy guitar (that sounds a million miles away from shit), then the sound of synths committing suicide to Marilyn Manson (or if they’re ‘educated’ then Jim Morrison’s dire spoken word “poetry†pap. Sorry, personal anti-goth thing). Never Turn Your Back is a wonderful piece of psytrance, I love the way it comes alive and makes a fairly tired sample sound new again. The layers and intricacy here just have to be heard to be believed, it’s just off da hook, as XZibit might say. Soulgasm is a mad rush of spinal arpeggios and flurries, once again with triumphant production and a solid vibe of dancing like your life depended on it – it’s a real moment, stuck in the right-now with nothing to hold you back, and it’s captured on this CD in binary. Sheesh. Consciousness, however, is the real masterpiece on this album – it beggars belief, for all the reasons stated above on this album (production, concept, vision, feeling) and then some… and despite being the oldest track here, it rules the roost as far as I’m concerned. Just…. I mean check it out, basically. You then get a wonderful piece based on a sample from the much-circulated video of LSD being tested on British army troops, and then it’s into Reality, another humdinger. It’s a game of two halves this one – dualistic, with a mature melodic nature at odds with a darker, moodier side. So… well, bloody hell basically. Once again Sundance have pulled something truly psychedelic out of the hat. It’s difficult to go from this to even more twisty fullon stuff and still call it “psychedelic†with a straight face. Not only will The Immaculate Perception scratch your Infected Mushroom itch, it’s also probably one of the most intelligent, considered, non-patronising and lastingly enjoyable releases under this genre’s banner. Ever.


9
 

josh

marathon solo-sessionahoy
But on the other hand Talpa was crap and you gave it similar praise :P
 

Fromem_Ory

Shantidisestablishment
the Tommy is Dead sample is absolutely fuckin brilliant. i cant believe eskimo sampled the same text ("sort of suspended in space" and "the walls appeared to be melllllting") and missed out on all the gems. not my style of trance, something different, but real humor here :Smile3:
 

RedZebra

Member
Talpa is one of my all-time favourite CDs. Absolutely awesome, and something I've listened to repeatedly since it was released. I've been wondering why so much of psy is depressingly disposable. Where are the other CDs that bare repeated listens like this?

So I gave Nystagmus a listen recently, and was a bit undecided. I like some tracks, and the interludes are pretty funny, but I think they'd irritate me listening to it all the time - I'd have to edit them out so I can just enjoy the music. Some of it seemed trying slightly TOO hard, compared to Talpa which just flows and builds and sounds effortless even though it's crammed full of sounds. Maybe the melodies aren't quite as good either.

Having said that I need to listen to it more and will do - often the most "long-lasting" CDs take the longest time for me to get in to, so hopefully that's the case here.

RedZebra
 

damion

Pound Shop Alex Petridis
the breaks in it seem to work well -- for now at least, but i think it might lose its edge over time. certainly nothing as irritating as (1)de la soul's 3 feet high and rising or (2)the goats' tricks of the shade

the power in the music is just flabbergasting here i think

and the inside back cover has printed instructions on how to make ellessdee :p
 
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