Recording information: Porto Kora, London, England; Stargate, France; Tetrapod, England.
The Israeli trance label Avatar compiles songs from several international producers -- from as far away as Russia and the U.S. to European countries like France and the Netherlands -- for Aviation Terminal 1, a nine-song collection of psychedelic trance. It's perhaps not surprising that an Israeli label would release this sort of music, even though only one of the nine featured producers is actually from Israel. The Eastern Mediterranean country became a mecca for the most psychedelic of psychedelic trance in the late '90s, championing the Goa trance style originally popularized on the Southwest Indian island of the same name. This is very intense music, unabashedly intended to be listened to on lots of massively mind-altering drugs like LSD rather than milder and shorter-lived drugs like ecstasy. Though you don't necessarily have to be tripping on acid for days at a time to appreciate this music, it certainly helps -- it's multi-layered, fast, filled with ups and downs, and tweaked with so many flanged effects you never can tell if the music is coming or going or what exactly is going on. This is definitely not for the faint of heart and nothing that you can chill-out to, for sure. So, given the number of exploitative "psychedelic" trance albums out there, this is undoubtedly one of the best. It's the real thing, given the stamp of approval from one of the most prominent Israeli trance labels. ~ Jason Birchmeier