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dark soho
sun spot
sphere records   2000
 

album rating: 3
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submitted by anton on 29-Mar-2001
dark soho continues traditions set by their predecessors in the genre and fellow israelites astral projection. this is the first full-length album for the band, and for a debut it is a very impressive work. obviously, there are a lot of elements that appear to be a picked up from other bands in the genre, but at the same time there's a distinct touch that separates it from the rest.

previously members of dark soho played in metal bands, so it is nice to see some of processed guitar elements embedded in fluid trance textures. the album is built around dark brooding trance tracks that have a distinct sci-fi feel, enhanced by vocal samples and occasional dark ambient soundscapes. thick pulsing basslines and overall energetic feel are present on each track, keeping the album far from conventional happy/dancy side of the genre. it is nice to see this dark trippy goa attitude overlaid on top of fluid danceable melodies.

some of the tracks build up very aggressive, edgy sound based on heavy abrasive percussion, deep basslines contrasted by clean distant strings. this is something I have always been looking for in trance, coming from darker, more aggressive genres. at times usual trance composition structure is broken by nice spacey ambient interludes that eventually breaking out into aggressive percussion textures filled with twisted strings and small noises.

"sun spots" has all the aspects you would usually criticize a trance album for, so in this respect it stays within boundaries of the genre. at the same time there is a lot of potential for growth that eventually might lead the band to a broader, richer and less conventional sound. if you are looking for a darker, edgier side of trance, this probably should be one of your picks.

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