Title: The World Beyond
Artist: The World Beyond
Release Date: 2015 March 20
Genre: Ambient / Psytrance / Goatrance
License: CC BY-NC-SA
Label: Ektoplazm / Neogoa
The World Beyond is the most appropriate title for this release imaginable. It starts out clearly in one world, and by the end has taken the listener to a new level. It’s unique in that unlike many other releases it isn’t firmly within a single genre, and it does bear resemblance to other music styles.
The World Beyond
So, as anyone who has read my reviews in the past knows, I probably have very little street cred when it comes to EDM. I am a late comer to this style, and even though I have been listening to it for the past seven or eight years, it hasn’t held a central role in my listening. That being said, I tend to like some releases because I am able to hear them in a way that others don’t: within the context of a much deeper (read historical) understanding of electronic music going back to the 1960’s and 1970’s.
And it’s because of this understanding I can relate to this release on a couple of different levels. First, the idea of four inter-locking tracks that tell a story (of sorts) is a throw back to the concept albums of rock groups like Yes, Pink Floyd, King Crimson and others. The fact that this release is a full 78 minutes long, with no track under 15 minutes in length speaks loudly to this idea.
Second is that I hear another layer to this release that seems to be missing from much of the analysis / reviews of the work I have read. Many people have dismissed the first track as a “boring ambient” piece of work. However, I believe that ‘The Vision’ is a double-entendre of a title. In this case ‘The Vision’ refers to the past, and the early visionaries of electronic music. This particular track is paying respect to Klaus Schulze. Many of the sounds / samples and effects in use are traced to ‘The Dome Event’ and ‘Beyond Recall’.
Moving onward, the second track opens with section that also sounds like it is based on Klaus Schulze’s work, but then starts bringing in many of elements of other earlier artists, like Tangerine Dream, etc. By around the middle of the song we hear the emergence of tribal drumming elements, and other counterpoint that moves the piece forward. This is possibly a tip of the hat to artists like Future Sound of London, in particular The Papua New Guinea remixes, although certainly many other artists. It’s in the last three minutes of this track that we hit more modern trance style beats and the speed of the track picks up from the mid-tempo it has been in for the last 12 minutes.
Finally there are the last two tracks:forty-two plus minutes of full on Goa / Trance style music. These are the tracks that everyone has gone over the top in love with. And I have to admit. in this setting I fnially get the appeal of this style of music. There is a a lot of suspense in this music, as you are brought to even higher heights with the beats, and the layered lines of synths and other sounds. By the time you reach the conclusion you will likely be extremely tired, at least I am, holding on to the rhythms, riding the vibe all the way through, and feeling the energy all about: both coming into me, and the energy that is leaving my body.
Reality is, this is possibly one of the most enjoyable rides I have been on in a long time. It’s a high energy wave pouring out all over my space, and it’s something that just cannot be stopped.
Like others, I have not tried to figure out who the collaborators are on this release. Although I have found the note that reveals them, I won’t reference it here. I was not familiar enough with the Neogoa catalog to even hazard a guess, so it wouldn’t be fair of me to reveal the artists here.
I love what this release does, although for possibly different reasons than many normal listeners to PsyTrance and Goa styles of music. This release links the past to the present. It takes the listener from this world into The World Beyond this one, and into a vision beyond this world.