VA - Psionic Circus (Digital Psionics)


Pound Shop Alex Petridis
Reaction score
what in tintern abbey are you talking about?
Psionic Circus
Digital Psionics (Australia)

Digital Psionics’ release schedule may be less busy than a 50 year old transvestive Skazi lookalike prostitute’s appointment book, but their output’s quality is of such a high level that their releases are always worth a sniff. And this is no exception – there are artists here who you’d normally give a wide birth to, but who somehow have produced uncharacteristically good music for this collection. Example: Safi Connection kicks off with Albert On Acid, which I have to say is probably the most interesting Safi track I think I’ve ever heard. Punchy fullon bass progresses nicely to a stuttered breakdown, and then things start to get interesting. The sheer scope of the highend sounds going on here is worth raising a glass to, and this is saying nothing of the wicked little Hoffman samples, the staggered and stuttered melody going on, and the way it sounds like it’s losing its own thread but isn’t. Space Tribe & Psywalker’s Space Case has plenty of good old Olli’s Wisdom going on, you know pretty much what to expect with this I guess, but there’s some sort of additional spark courtesy of Psywalker. The breaksy midsection is a nice change, and the final run reaches the Space Tribe heights which he hasn’t really scaled recently. Tube’s Land Of Reason has been on pretty heavy rotation here, even though it starts out with a guitar riff. It builds well to the first break, then goes a but Misted Muppet – huge, sweeping arpeggiated chords all over the place, swirly melodic stabs add to the vortex effect, and at the end of the day, even in spite of its huge guitar riff (better than most), I just love the way it hangs together. Next up is Skazi vs CPU. Hah!! I get primed for a pisstake frenzy, and then this happens… Highest Party is actually pretty fat. Okay, it’s a little too stopstart, and the “deck slowing down†break is unnecessary, but this is VERY big and VERY caustic stuff, and as such marks a big departure from both their normal styles. There’s ne’er a guitar or dodgy sample in sight, and the final peaks are big and memorable enough to create a real storm on the dancefloor. Damage’s Unspeakable Evil is pretty decent, it’s tight and escalates well, and the final run (which is what this baby’s all about) is an utter riot. Shift has come on leaps and bounds lately, and Corrosion is one of his best tracks yet. Still keeping that gritty, grimey vibe going on all the time, the breakdown and subsequent drop are wonderful moments in psytrance, and the echoey main riff that comes in for the final run is a sheer tear-streaming joy to behold. Bon’s The Only Escape is one of my tunes of the moment, make no mistake. The shuffled riff over the top of an efficient and lusty backbone makes it, with this sort of juxtaposed-groove making it all the more psychedelic. The topend in the midsection is pure oldskool, could be from something on Tip when they were peaking, a little like Total Eclipse maybe… just adorable. Severe LFO abuse later, it all staggers back to this wibbly, wobbly wonderfest, and I’m in love with it and want to have its babies. Xatrix’s The Spice builds into a nice middle run, but it seems then to lose its energy and doesn’t really pick up to where it promised it might go for the final stomp. Kluster’s Walker is one of the funniest tracks I’ve heard in a long while, cartoony in the extreme with sound effects over little warpy bleeps and a coasty, i-just-dropped-acid-on-my-way-to-the-post-office-woo-look-the-sun’s-shining sort of way. Dark Nebula & Scatterbrain’s Crash And Burn is a delight, the samples are funny as hell and the riffs swimming about in the midrange have that vintage-Cosmosis-like kaleidoscopic quality to them. Pure fucking classic, basically: Love it to bits, and the end run is one of the finest, freshest bits of trance around at the moment. Psionic Circus is a gem basically – anything that can cram in this many surprises in just one disc is well worth a sniff, and with the quality as consistently high as this, it’s well worth your checking out.