Masterson’s 2012 Psychic Excursion was a smash hit. But it was not just the album that made fans crazy. Masterson’s blog series of the same name became a phenomenon in itself.
The concept behind the series was simple: release one song at a time, each supported by a blog post where he discussed his thoughts on the nature of electronic music and how he so perfectly captures that reality in his work.
Masterson is well known for his experimental approach to music, and this album was no exception. However with this series he found a way to push the limits of what it means to be experimental even further than most people thought possible.
By carefully selecting songs from his vast collection of never before heard songs he was able to create an album of 38 tracks which were all released in under two weeks. His lightning fast writing style allowed him to finish the entire album in just three days, which left him with plenty of time to write the corresponding blog posts.
The fourth track on Masterson’s Psychic Excursion, “Masterson’s Psychic Excursion,” is the first real statement of purpose on the album. Tucking away from the jagged edges of noise and industrial, Masterson reveals a more polished, cohesive style that hopefully will be explored further in future albums. This track is also the first grandstanding moment on the album where Masterson brings in a more than competent guitar player to shred over his beats.
The first three tracks on the album are all experimental hybrids of genres that have been explored before. “Why Not” is an attempt at industrial, but it comes off as weak and amateurish compared to the likes of Nine Inch Nails or Ministry. “This One” has some interesting moments with a fast pace and a catchy chorus, but it doesn’t really go anywhere. “Going to Bed” is a dark trip hop piece that sounds like Massive Attack trying to cover The Cure’s Disintegration.
Masterson does have some good ideas, but he needs to polish them and give them more time to develop. There is potential for future greatness here if you are willing to look past these early missteps.
Masterson’s Psychic Excursion is a blog about experimental electronic music. It is hosted by Tom Masterson, an interesting individual who has a passion for music and for writing. He has been involved in many different projects over the years, including a stint in the Army and several years as a professional musician. He started his blog in 2011, after he retired from his job with a large company that was known for its music videos.
The blog is really more of a weekly column than anything else. Masterson writes about many different topics, including music and current events. Each column is only about one paragraph long and it’s written in a quick and easy to read style. The format of the blog reminds me of what you would find in a magazine or newspaper. The posts are very short, with just enough information on each topic to keep you interested but not so much that it gets boring.
Masterson’s Psychic Excursion is a blog about experimental electronic music. It is hosted by Tom Masterson, an interesting individual who has a passion for music and for writing. He has been involved in many different projects over the years, including a stint in the Army and several years as a professional musician. He started his blog in 2011,
Masterson’s latest album, Psychic Excursion, is a departure from his previous work. He has ditched the samples, synthesizers and drum machines for an all acoustic sound. The album features a string quartet, two guitars and drums.
In the liner notes Masterson talks about how he wanted to have a “realist” sound for this album. He wanted it to sound like people playing live instruments in the same room rather than recording each instrument separately and then combining them in the digital realm. He also wanted the music to be as free from effects as possible, even going as far as having the string players record dry, with no reverb at all. The only effect used was a bit of compression during mastering to keep things rocking along.
This approach results in some very interesting sounds, especially from the guitars (played by Master’s long-time sideman Nick Zinner). Zinner’s playing is exquisitely sparse; he never seems to be playing more than three or four notes at any given time. But he plays so much with dynamics that you almost forget you aren’t hearing a full-on rock band. This is particularly true on the track “My Psychic Excursion” where
The idea of an electronic music blog is a good one and it seems that the musical masterson has done it again, with his latest release Psychic Excursion. The album features seven tracks, all of which have been created by Masterton himself. However, not all of them are as good as the other.
The first track is the title track, which is a great way to introduce yourself to the genre. It’s a little on the experimental side but has a really good groove and builds into something really interesting. The second track is a remix of “Infinite Universe”, by dj shadow and mike tyson, which really works well in this album. The third track is another remix, this time of “Love In The Dark”, by dj shadow and mike tyson, which also works well in this album.
It’s hard to say whether or not these three tracks are better than the others but they do sound like they’re better than their predecessors. They’re definitely more exciting, though, and that’s for sure. However, there are some things about these tracks that I don’t care for so much, such as how they use samples from old songs to create new ones.
The second track on the album (and my favorite) is “Psych
Masterson’s latest album, Psychic Excursion, is a self-described “experimental electronic music” record. It’s a mix of songs created using both analog and digital techniques, with the most frequently employed being an old reel-to-reel tape deck and a Gameboy. The result is not unlike that of early electronic releases from Aphex Twin or Boards of Canada; it’s a psychedelic experience that contributes to the growing collection of cataloged sounds we associate with memories of our youth.
The first track, “Awake,” sets the tone for the entire record. We’re immediately introduced to a pulsating beat laid down on top of some drum breaks and synths. The drum fills morph into different samples as the song goes on but remain pretty tight through the first half until they become an almost unrecognizable mess in the second half. I personally would have preferred more variation in this track but nonetheless it serves well as an introduction to Masterson’s style.
Luckily, the subsequent track, “Cortez, The Killer,” follows up with a much more interesting beat. The drums are again laid down over some synth sounds but this time they seem to be playing
On the first track, “Slide,” Masterson creates a warm and welcoming intro with a playful guitar riff and light percussion. At times the track sounds reminiscent of the British band The xx, but Masterson’s vocals are notably more distinctive and soulful.
The second track is called “Paradise.” Here, Masterson transitions into a more upbeat, dance vibe with a house-inspired drum beat and smooth synthesizer. The song takes listeners on an emotional rollercoaster with a full breakdown mid-song that brings back the original guitar riff from Track 1 before climaxing into synth-heavy melodies.
In the third and final song, “Racing to Zero,” Masterson closes out his album powerfully with a dark bass line that builds up to an epic chorus. The lyrics tell a modern-day love story in which two lovers can’t seem to get it right no matter how much they try.