The Indian psytrance scene is going through a phase of self-discovery and reflection. Having been host to the birth of the psychedelic trance culture itself and its subsequent evolution, India has over the years become a prime hub that attracts touring artists and also boasts of an extensive fanbase for the genre, spread across its length and breadth. In the last few years, a number of artists and collectives in the country have ensured that an elevated quality of homegrown talent is channelized to the patrons, and the new wave of Indian psytrance is definitely gaining height.
Prominent album releases by local artists include the edgy and multi-stylistic debut album by Braindrop, Karma Konnect’s psytrance album – Consciousness, the uptempo experimental release by Sanathana and the Jibber Jabber collaboration project’s full length debut which can be described as technical darkpsy. There was a full length debut on offer with impeccably created ambient soundscapes from the Avilente project from Bangalore. There was no shortage in releases of the shorter format too, with impressive EPs put out by Fuzulu, Shantam, Dragon Boyz and Dar Kapo. India has taken huge strides in the field of label / artist management, with record labels managing commendable rosters of artists from across the globe and also presenting carefully selected and styled compilation albums. Vantara Vichitra marched ahead on the forest trance legacy it has constructed over the years with Emotive Theatre, their third compilation album adding to their family both veteran psychonauts along with the new breed of emerging talent. Another experienced Indian label to maintain their excellent standards from the past is Omveda Records, whose latest offering, Rhythmic Vision promises to be an explosive compilation going by the array of talent it features. It’s progressive and techno branches Occulta and Occultech Records respectively strive to mirror the same lofty standards and also have fresh compilations in the offering entitled Synthetic Ritual and Occultechno Vol. 1. Digital Om Productions, popular all over the world for it’s melodic morning style also continues releasing frequent albums in the full on and ambient categories. Half Indian label Devil’s Mind Records released an out-of-the-box scando-forest-experimental-darkpsy compilation, 71 Degrees North, which was put together within less than 2,000 kilometres from the North Pole. New Indian forest label Liquid frequency also released a 4-track EP called Aranya, their third release, featuring a tasty lineup of new artists in the forest genre. New label Indali Records has announced it’s much awaited debut compilation with a smashing lineup of artists. Other artists who have released tracks on albums worldwide and continue to present anticipation for future work are White Wizard, Liquidnoize, Flipknot / Kerosene Club, Hydropanic, Vaeya, Spinal Fusion, Terra Moto, Bubble Guns, Starlab, Creotaur, Kosmic Baba, Abduction Investigators, Dark Cygnus and Aum Sync to name a few. Leading labels from outside the country have also recently found local ambassadors to ensure their material reaches the partygoers in India. Projects like Spacepops, Harsh (Lunatic Alien), Kryll, Dev, Haemoglobin, Fungalam, Karran Khanna bring the sounds of some of the leading psytrance labels to local parties. Tour managers and organizers deserve a word or two of praise for infusing a new versatility in the style and spectrum of international artists they host, especially in the country’s metropolitan party circuit. Fans are now getting to hear both popular and cutting-edge underground substreams of psytrance, which brings much relief to the psychedelic explorers. Party visuals, decor and album design are evolving in the scene as well. Rusty Psyflyart is the most prominent project, designing mind-bending cover artwork for albums, psychedelic T-shirt prints and design work for festivals like Psycrowdelica in Germany and Transylvania Calling. Cacofonix of Vantara Vichitra has been receiving some positive reviews for album art and party decor. Alien Vision is a noteworthy visual artist, whose hypnotic designs have mesmerized trancers in India and abroad.
With the festival season in Europe having started in full swing, one expects the aforementioned artists and collectives in India to be in a state of reflection and hopefully creating a lot more magic for the forthcoming season!