Aug 24, 2014

Sundaze 1434

Hello,  The F1 circus has restarted after a holiday break it does so at the famous Spa circuit and after today's qualification it became clear that Mercedes is still way in front of the rest of the field. Hamilton challenged Rosberg who calmly put his energy in beating the UK loudmouth, but hey it's about the race and who will take the biggest risks. At least it gives the rest of the field a chance to win if the Mercedes riders take each other out, not that its likely that happens, Rosberg is too calculated for that.

Today once again the highly prolific ambient, trance and psytrance producer, known to have in excess of 50 recording aliases, alas the man is no more on this plane. He left us plenty of sundaze..  ... ...N'Joy

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Jake Stephenson

Paperhouse (named after the track on Can’s Tago Mago album) were a late eighties space-rock outfit from Surrey. Originally consisting of Jake Stephenson (guitar, vocals), Gray E (bass) Andy (keyboards) and Phil Merrall (drums), they played a psychedelic mix of dub-tinged space rock. The first line up played a handful of party gigs to friends and family in the Weybridge area, releasing a number of live recordings on cassette.

A second line-up of Jake, Phil, Andy Taylor (bass) and Brian Trower (keyboards) ventured forth with greater commitment, securing gigs further afield, and in front of paying punters (albeit mostly as support act). An album, ‘Spongy Comestibles’, was produced at White Dove Studios in Weybridge (actually Jake’s spare bedroom) and released on the Mystic Stones label, with a couple of thousand pieces of vinyl and a couple of thousand CDs being pressed, most of which were exported straight to the Italian market. Paperhouse were a couple of years too late for the UK festival scene, and were probably too similar to the Ozrics to establish themselves properly - the lure of electronic dance music proved too much and they split in 1994 to pursue alternative avenues. Among the subsequent projects were Jake and Brian’s Optic Eye and Optica, Jake’s solo trance alter ego Shamanic Tribes On Acid and Phil and Andy T’s Jupiterhead.

The late Jake Stephenson was a highly prolific ambient, trance and psytrance producer, known to have in excess of 50 recording aliases. He is best known for his solo project Shamanic Tribes On Acid as well as collaborations with other artists, such as Brian Trower (Optica, Optic Eye) and Matt Hillier (Alien Mutation, Crystal Moon). Jake passed away on the 22nd of January 2005 after an attack of epilepsy.

Prolific UK trance/psytrance/ambient producer. The bulk of Stephenson's output was released on the Kinetix, Rumour Records and Jumpin' & Pumpin' record labels under a multitude of project names, the most well-known being his solo project Shamanic Tribes on Acid and his collaborations with Brian Trower (Optic Eye, Optica) and Matt Hillier (Alien Mutation vs. Indigo Egg, Crystal Moon).

The most frequently used solo project name for UK producer Jake Stephenson, Shamanic Tribes on Acid released several albums (Acid Apocalypse, 303 To Infinity, The Mad Hatter's Acid Tea Party, and Future World ) as well as 12"es and compilation tracks mainly in the psychedelic trance vein. The music of Jake Stephenson is scattered across many many compilation albums, all of which are pretty much deleted, the man was prolific, and passed away far too young, but then he crammed a lot of life into those few years. Jake Stephenson passed away on the 22nd of January 2005 after an epilepsy attack.

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Mmmm, this is such a great album. The late Jake Stephenson and the Kinetix label released so much good music back in the 90's. From the deep, spacey ambient sounds of Crystal Moon, Alien Mutation and Indigo Egg to the fast, loud and nothing but MAD acidic sounds of Shamanic Tribes on Acid. And especially, all the magical sounds inbetween, from Optica and Transfinite. This was the true Kinetix-sound, spacey psychedelic trance with pretty soft beats.

Jake Stephenson and Brian Trower find another great outlet as Optica here. Every single track here is stellar, but the stand out has to be Somniferum (Rainbow reconstruction mix). The "mainlead" that starts around 02:37 is amazing. Remember the Infinity Project-title "When sound becomes colour"? After listening to this song - on a BIG soundsystem - you'll know what they meant! Spirals...

If you like your old schoul trance music spacey and trippy, rather than banging and loud, then do yourself a favour and cheque some Kinetix-stuf. It's also great to see (and hear, of course) the roots of the genious minds of Jake Stephenson and the living legend Matt Hillier (Ishq, Ishvara, Elve etc.).

Optica - All The Colours Of The Rainbow  (flac 391mb)

01 "Glow With All The Colours Of The Rainbow" (Intercede) 0:35
02 Analogue Spectrum 9:56
03 Hashidity (Red Kingsize Mix) 6:53
04 Glow (White Heat Mix) 6:28
05 Alkaline PH9 5:57
06 Curve 5:21
07 Incredibly Strange Dub 6:22
08 Lifewish (Purple Planet Mix) 5:28
09 Somniferum (Rainbow Reconstruction Mix) 6:33
10 Macrorobotic 7:23
11 Microstatic 4:24
12 "Do You Think" (Parabole) 0:16

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An extended 12" becomes a 37min mini-album full of minimalistic energetic trippy sounds by Jake Stephenson and Brian Trower under their Optica moniker.

Optica - Alkaline Spectrum (flac  240mb)

01 Alkaline PH9 (Spectra Mix) 6:57
02 Analogue Spectrum (Vibrating Shakra Mix) 6:26
03 Energy Voyage 4:48
04 Techno Pigeons Eat Kippers 5:56
05 Acid Munchies 7:11
06 Rising High 5:36

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Another beautiful piece of work from Matt Hillier and legend Jake Stephenson that came in 3 years after Jake's death.  Stephenson was known for a great deal of electronic music projects, mainly of acid "303" and ambient nature. The biggest contribution he made was, most definitely, to Kinetix label, mainly with projects Optica and Optic Eye.

Colourform, is not the first collaboration between Jake and Matt, friends since the mid nineties. Ten years ago they established an acid-ish ambient project Crystal Moon, which somehow was quite overshadowed and pretty unseen, not receiving exposure, slipped thru the cracks. Considering the style adopted with Crystal Moon, one could expect to hear something similar, but Colourform is very calm, minimalistic and free of "acid" higher-level sound. If you like calm, meditative-oriented, 'celestial' ambient work, you'd most probably make an unexcusable mistake having missed this outstanding release.

Colourform - Visions of Surya  (flac 304mb)

01 Kaleidoscope 16:24
02 Nubien Sunset 6:12
03 Flying Carpet 6:47
04 Monkey Puzzle 9:59
05 Diving Into Sun 8:46
06 Dissolution 8:36
07 As Stars We Are 9:15

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Anonymous said...

Hi, Im looking for Optica's 2nd album F-U-Z-Z in flac do you have it?

Rho said...

Hello, sorry Anon can't help you with Fuzz but Discogs 'prices' are reasonable so if you really want it buy it and it may turn out a descent investment too...

The Spaniard said...

Hello again, Rho:

After the positive reviews you wrote of these albums and the praises they received I want to ask: Can you please reup them? This is my second and last request of the week.

And this is my first request of the week: (

Thank you and I hope you have a good rest of your week.