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Brainticket — Adventure
(Purple Pyramid clp-0075-2, 1980/1997, CD)

Brainticket — Psychonaut
(Purple Pyramid CLP 9024, 1971/2010, CD)

Brainticket — Voyage
(Purple Pyramid CLP 0076-2, 1982/2001, CD)

by Mike McLatchey, Published 1998-02-01

Adventure Cover artPsychonaut Cover artVoyage Cover art

These comprise 3/5 of the Brainticket output and are the most recent reissues to date. Celestial Ocean was reviewed last issue and I would assume that Cottonwoodhill isn't far behind.  Psychonaut is the group's second album, a rather meager affair after the psychedelic madness of Cottonwoodhill. Psychonaut is somewhere in between but a bit closer to Celestial Ocean. There are no serious organ riffs topped by screaming hysterical female vocals and mind warping effects here, this is much more conventional in comparison. It reminds me of a Krautrock Jefferson Airplane, lots of 60s pointers and hippie madness — the nearest German equivalent could be the first Tomorrow's Gift album, yet this is a bit hippier. Much later and much better are Brainticket's last two albums from the early 80s.  Voyage and Adventure are similar, two side long tracks in a much more restrained fashion than the early albums. The pieces are marked by all kinds of experimentation — synthesizers, sequencers, almost microtonal percussion, hand drums, flutes, and more. For a three synthesizer group, Brainticket definitely knew how to make their sound organic — there's a tendency for Eastern sounds in the mix, similar at times to Jade Warrior yet far more electronic. Adventure is the more electronic of the two, with lots of stormy and squealing analog synthesizers, backed up almost distorted bluesy electric piano at times. Not as Eastern sounding as Voyage, it is nevertheless equally as interesting. Not only are these latter two albums great as of themselves, Purple Pyramid has taken it upon themselves to add over 20 minutes of bonus tracks to both CDs. Both CDs have a track each subtitled "(Analog 1970)" which seem to be too technologically advanced to be from 1970, most likely they were recorded around or after Celestial Ocean. The last two tracks on each CD seem to be more modern, the sequencers are more in front and I would suspect that these are more of Joel Vandroogenbroeck's project than of Brainticket in particular. Voyage and Adventure are both superb CD reissues, far better executed than the Psychonaut or Celestial Ocean reissues, especially with the excellent bonus tracks.

Filed under: Reissues, Issue 14, 1997 releases, 1980 recordings, 2010 releases, 1971 recordings, 2001 releases, 1982 recordings

Related artist(s): Brainticket, Joel Vandroogenbroeck

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