Friday, 23 March 2012

Review: 01-N - Raison D'Etre

01-N Raison D'Etre
I reviewed 01-N and his silly, un-Googleable name, not too long ago, so I'm not going to go through the introductory waffle again. Japanese, psy-trance, ridiculous, un-Googleable name, very good. You got it? Anyway, he's back with a new album, and bugger me if Raison D'Etre isn't his best effort yet. This kind of remarkable, consistent quality from a psy-trance artist is almost totally unprecedented. In fact, this guy might well be the best thing in trance today. It blows my mind that he only has about 300 listeners on Last.fm and nobody in the psy scene seems to be aware of him. Why could this possibly be? Oh yes, it's the ridiculous un-fucking-searchable artist name.

Raison D'Etre plays out much like the last album - eight tracks of slamming, good-fun psy-trance and one surprisingly good downtempo dubby-breaksy track to close on. Once again there's remarkably little in the way of typical psy clich├ęs and an unusual ear for rich, hook-laden melodic content. You might think that all this qualifies as "much of the same" and therefore diminishing returns, but this particular flavour of psychedelic tranciness is pretty much unheard of, and so 01-N can continue churning out samey-sounding albums for some time yet before I get bored of it. What makes this one better than the last one is quite simply the strength of the individual tunes. The ridiculously titled opener Magnetoencephalography (seriously man, do you want anyone to be able to search for your music?) is a banger, and the uplifting Euro-trance tinged Casimir Effect is so rave it makes me want to chew my bottom lip off even when I'm sat in my living room eating scones and taking quiet tea. Once again though, what impresses the most is the sheer consistency of the tracks - almost every single one is extremely strong and never short of ideas. I cannot stress enough just how rare this is in psy trance. It's really fucking rare, okay?

This is a short review simply because I've already reviewed this guy quite recently and this album isn't different enough to justify another full-blown review. I'd be having a massive headache right now if I were a real music journalist, grasping for some convoluted verbiage in a desperate bid to say the exact same shit twice but in a different way. Thank God I'm not, eh?

Genre: Psy-trance
Stupid Arbitrary Rating: 9/10

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