South African trance used to be shitscary, scratchy stuff that was a pain to listen to. Then the majority of psytrance became scaryshit, shit stuff that was a pain to listen to. Go figure.
Slug’s How High kicks off nicely, evolving nicely and avoiding clichés like there’s no tomorrow. Shift’s impact is diluted by Perplex, whose collaboration Retrobution is limp and repetitive; likewise the normally-wonderful Pitch Hikers with their below par Give The Order. Painkiller & Bliss’s Ragga Time is pretty nifty, it shifts and slides up and out from the centre in a way that a lot of psytrance used to do with a build, peak, and drop that’s refreshingly unstrained. Multistate’s Spoil is the pick of the bunch here (track seven, nonetheless, but I’m sure that’s just a coincidence. Again.)
Frenetic, chummy, choppy happy stuff that you just can’t ignore. Fucking sweet; likewise Manifold’s Faces – one of those tunes you just know is going to be special form the moment it starts. It’s got more balls than wimbledon, more funk than a james brown convention, ravey sweeps, cheeky voice samples, and – at the end of the day – look, it just rocks.
Anyone out there alienated by darkpsy and fullon will find that in this neat little overlappy area there’s some seriously good shit going down. Worth checking out, not least for the ballsy, Liam-Gallagher way that it seems to have ignored every other bit of psytrance this year.