Various Artists - Grand Avenue

Moonflower Productions, September 2005

Author: pr0fane
Date: Oct 20, 2005
Views: 2655

Various
Title: Grand Avenue - Compiled by Tony Comanti
Label: Moonflower Productions
Format: CD (Jewelcase with 4 page inlay)
Released: September, 2005
Cover: http://217.160.138.169/pic_b/mfp1cd003_b.jpg


Review:

After starting out as a tech-trance label in 2004 with the compilation \"Nocturnal Imprints\", containing artists like Tetraktys, Opsis, Triac and PPS Project, followed by \"Nocturnal Imprints\" in 2005, containing artists like Midi Miliz, Spirallianz, Cybered and Triac, the Swedish label recently released a new compilation containing tracks by artists from the more club-oriented progressive circles on the psytrance scene. The title of the compilation is \"Grand Avenue\", and even though you should never judge a book by its cover, I had no hesitations ordering the CD after its release, after simply having looked at the tracklist. I mean: new tracks by Son Kite, Ticon, Human Blue and Tegma - it can\'t possibly fail.


01. Chris Pointdexter - My Baby [132 BPM]
First track is by the Swedish producer Chris Poindexter, who made his mark on the progressive house/psytrance circles last year with releases on Spiral Trax and ACDC, the biggest hit being \"Darkness\", getting remixed by Ticon with huge success. \"My Baby\" is a quite clubby tune - catchy and with some nice, tight grooves, but unfortunately failing to really a impression. Decent track, yet nothing spectacular.

02. Son Kite - Gazing At The Sun [136 BPM]
Intruducing Son Kite, the biggest name on the progressive psytrance scene, seems kind of pointless. \"Gazing At The Sun\" is one of the few newer Son Kite tunes after they started to focus their work on the Minilogue sideproject, and it\'s definitely oozing with their sense of quality and putting together a good tune. Crystal clear trance, sprinkled with delightful sunny melodies, giving slight associations to Der Dritte Raums \"Hale Bopp\". Surely a highlight.

03. Kalimax - Where Is The Party [138 BPM]
Next tune is from the new Swedish duo Kalimax, consisting of Tony Comanti (one of the guys behind Moonflower) and Magnus Forsberg from the Swedish trance-portal mandarin.nu. \"Where Is The Party\" is pretty close to their track \"Demons\" on Tribal Visions last compilation - sweet, naive melodies, and generally a very pleasant morning touch. The production seems a bit muddy, (not really that strange, following a track by Son Kite), and the melodies are in my opinion too much in the background. Generally it\'s a very good track though, and I\'ll definitely look out for new Kalimax releases in the future.

04. Tegma - Needafix [136 BPM]
Tegmas contribution, \"Needafix\", is so far the most intense on the compilation, and is - like \"No Time\" from the latest Tribal Vision compilation - to be found somewhere between the style of the somewhat techish sound \"Encoded/Decoded\" and the more full on \"002: Avant Garde\". A relentlessly pounding dance floor track, embellished by a corny but quite pleasing repeated sample saying \"I need a fix\". Not highly interesting, but solid dance floor material.

05. Ticon - We Are The Mammuth Hunters (Live Mix 2005) [138 BPM]
Ticons 3rd album \"zero six after\" is getting released in a matter of weeks, and as a taster for the new sound we get a live mix of \"We Are The Mammoth Hunters\" from their first album \"Rewind\" - possibly one of their biggest hits to date. The new version isn\'t quite as raw and harsh as the original, but instead with some new layers of melodies, and a generally much more uplifting attitude. A really good remix - not exceptional, but certainly with unmistakable dance floor potential.

06. Human Blue - Woup [138 BPM]
Human Blue is up next, and \"Woup\" really shines as a flashback to the beginning of the Scandinavian progressive trance wave. On one hand starting very dark and gloomy, but on the other hand slowly adding more brighter elements, before climaxing in the last 4 minutes as a storming morning tune with some fine, almost epic, melodies. Great tune to put some oldschool feel into a progressive set.

07. Perfect Stranger - It\'s All About [136 BPM]
After more or less closing down his BLT project, Yuli Fershtat has continued his contribution to the scene with his Perfect Stranger project, so far releasing a couple of tracks on Iboga. He follows in the same path as on his earlier releases, generally keeping the atmosphere quite organic, using very distinct and somewhat funky tribal percussion, and adding some subtle Israeli melodic influences. Good, bouncy track for the outdoors.

08. Cybertronic - Let Feel You [136 BPM]
\"Let Feel You\" by the greek duo Cybertronic is one of the more unique tunes on the album, being a quite interesting crossover-tune. The sound is quite techtrance-like, very metallic and pumping, but also using some very traditional trancy pads, housey grooves and some quite clubby male vocals. It does sound pretty special, but I\'m not sure what exactly to think of it really. Certainly not bad though.

09. James Benitez - Not Over Yet (Parham & Plaza Remix) [126 BPM]
Parham & Dominic Plaza finish the compilation with a remix of James Benitez\'s \"Not Over Yet\", released on Plastik Parks \"Outsider\" compilation earlier this year. I really like what P&P are doing at the moment, but this remix was slightly disappointing. Yes, the groove is solid, and the production is really good, but the deep atmosphere and the simple, melancholic melody from the original is all gone. Not bad in any way, but not as stunning as I had expected.


Bottom line:

With \"Grand Avenue\" Tony Comanti and the rest of the Moonflower crew prove that they are more than a techtrance label, and that they have a quite broad taste in the progressive spectrum. The compilation features a fine mix of the increasingly popular housey grooves, uplifting progressive trance, slightly oldschool progressive trance, a few techtrance influences, and the variety of sounds should assure that everyone should find something they like. There are no strictly bad tracks, yet some tracks are of course weaker than others - despite good production and some catchy grooves, Chris Pointdexters \"My Baby\" is probably my least favourite tune, while Son Kite once again shines as the highlight of a compilation, closely followed by the Human Blues flashback tune \"Woup\".

All in all 2005 brought us another solid progressive release, great work by Moonflower.


Favourites:

2 (!!), 3, 5, 6 (!!), 7


Verdict:

8/10


Link:

www.moonflower.se


Review by:

Jannick Andersen // pr0fane
Website: www.sunrisesupplies.com
Label: www.dance-n-dust.com

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