Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography
Djam Karet - The Trip CD (album) cover


Djam Karet

Eclectic Prog

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Bookmark and Share
5 stars Hi,

Djam Karet -- The Trip (47.08) (2013)

There was a time and place, when I thought that taking a trip required ... something ... to get you going, to get you excited, to allow yourself a moment of madness, of insanity, of ... sometimes there are no words for it ... moments when your inner self, simply goes away with some magickal enchantment, that none of us can properly define, but we love to spend time on it. I can tell you in my mind, how many times I sat down and listened to two very long pieces by Pink Floyd, Amon Duul 2 and others, in 1972 and 1973, and how much I enjoyed them under many conditions.

One of the things I learned was to simply close your eyes, and just let the movie happen ... let it pass by you ... and I did. For several years, I listened intently, quietly and introvertedly to these things ... until one day, I knew what the reflections from this firepool of a body were making suggestions that you were all about! The music, happened to be the enzyme that carries you there ... the actual train, as the notes on the flyer suggest, or the virtual rocket that takes you into the stratosphere, where you are ever the camera looking at ... the sky opens once, twice, three times ... and you groom your own psychosis now and then, wondering what all this ritual continuing is all about! Some of us love all that, though some are afraid of it.

I had never called, any of these a "trip", surprisingly enough, and I still do not look at them as a "trip", as I consider that "inner" side as important as the outer side, and thus I have always looked at my experience as a city with two tales, or a person with a mind awake and one asleep! And that is reversed during the night when your dream portal awakens!

I may have, over the years, lost (something or other), but not forgotten what all this felt like, and the river of no return is really what it all became for me ... the salmon might return, but we never did ... we could "remember" that moment, but we could not re-live it. It became a sacred land arose from the ashes ... a hungry ghost that still gathered your attention now and then ... swimming in a big sky, that never ended, seemed to have some dark clouds, but no rain ... always beautiful if we could take a screenshot of it all ... the ultimate dream portal in one's life.

So, it was quite a nice surprise, when I set about listening to "The Trip" ... and found that I was not going to have a single break, and that I was just going to have to close my eyes, and arise from the ashes of my inner slumber, and go camping with my friends in a new land, a sort of no man's land for those that are afraid ... but a visual treat that asks for a new sign, that might even say ... "for mad persons only".

So it is, with this piece of music. It's hard to believe that you just about do not hear the drums for at least 15 minutes, but it tells you that we're not in a hurry, that the band does not have to show off its musical prowess to impress you with the music! This is not about the music per se ... it's about the ability to enjoy a ... well ... a trip ... from here to ... and if you have the patience to enjoy and appreciate a continuity of sounds telling you a story that you can create similar to the one I just told you, then this is for you and then some.

It's too easy to say that this is just like those old days 40 years ago, when you had Pink Floyd doing these long things, you had Krautrock doing some eye-popping live experimentations, and of course, you had some reviewers telling you that something sounded like a washing machine, too, but they never bothered to go listen to their wives' washing machine doing their laundry ... later Faust in Germany made sure we knew the difference!

It might be suggested that during these 47 minutes or so, that a lot of different moods and styles come and go, and have your head go all Michelangelo, but in the end, amidst all the parts, that I refuse to call "solos" ... to me they are NOT, they are a visual illustration of the music's own story! ... there are many moments where you can hear many different areas of this band ... I can hear "Collaborator" once or twice, I can hear "Burning the Hard City" once or twice, I can hear ... many different parts, but ... what I'm hearing is not even related to those early parts ... this has a life of its own.

If there is a favorite part of this, for me, is the "No Commercial Potential" idea ... this is a complete piece that starts and comes to an end 48 minutes later ... if you are used to a more commercial concept and idea of music, you will not likely enjoy this at all, and the total dedication to the continuity of this piece until it's time is up, is excellent, and mature, and only shows that you have a band that is capable of defining and designing its music to be something ... that most of us will rarely listen to, hear, or look for.

This is DJam Karet at its best. Scary isn't it? 25 years of great music ... and still the light shines!

Of special note here, and one of the great things about this group, is the way that the guitars compliment each other. You are not likely to hear two more different guitars do so much and alternate parts so strongly as they do here, together, or separately! As I used to say, this is a welcome to the church of the electric guitar ... but now I have to update the statement to "welcome to the church of the inner language courtesy of Djam Karet!"

On the press release, there were some notes that give you a better idea of how "progressive" this band is, and how they did this work which has almost always been a throwback to the 1970's and the energy that those folks had when they did their work. You'll be glad to know that never has it sounded so good, and that "progressive" is alive and well in the hands of a group that knows what it means ... and makes sure they can take you there!

That name? Djam Karet. The album? "The Trip".

Sometimes, listening to music is an experience ... for which there are not enough words, there are not enough paints, and there are not enough notes ... with which to describe it. All you can do is ... sit ... and listen ... and then listen some more ... and then listen some more ... and this is what all the best trips always do you to and I, isn't it?

Report this review (#954617)
Posted Sunday, May 5, 2013 | Review Permalink
5 stars All Aboard Space Hippies. Get Your Tickets Ready

Hypothesise this :

A jam session with the Hawkwind lineup from 1972 who have been supplied with limitless amounts of LSD 25 , Tangerine Dream in the mindset of their Rubycon days and Cluster who have been convinced that this is a remake of Cluster 2 and an alien hypnotist has been called in from planet Zebulon 9 ( constellation unknown ) all expenses paid to convince them all that they are all virtuoso musicians at the top of their game. It is being secretly recorded and supervised by David Gilmour who is chief engineer, musical consultant and has final say on everything.

That's what you have here on this mind blowout.

The Trip by Djam Karet is a manifestation of ideas and concepts that tingle, capture and numb everything that has ever occurred within the inner mind and then some. This baby would have Timothy Leary running for cover. The sonic images conjured here make the Jupiter sequence from 2001: A Space Odyssey seem like some sort of kids amusement park cheap tunnel of horrors.

Pure frightening brilliance.

Report this review (#997479)
Posted Saturday, July 13, 2013 | Review Permalink
Honorary Collaborator
5 stars I must be great to be Djam Karet. I mean, it's pretty amazing that on listening to their latest album `The Trip', you realise all the different band members were clearly abducted by aliens as small children, injected with the DNA of German bands like Cluster, Dom, Amon Duul 2 and Tangerine Dream, with a splice of the early era of Pink Floyd, the Delirium Records-era Porcupine Tree and even Steven Wilson's electronic project Bass Communion. They were then dropped back to Earth, and somehow, probably through the electronic signal coursing through their implanted tracking devices that gave them all some sort of symmetry or connection, they were able to meet up later on and eventually get to record this little beauty. In fact, as this work bridges lysergic shimmering psychedelic rock, immersive electronic soundscapes and charging spacerock, blending them all together seamlessly, effortlessly moving from one passage to another before you even realise it, I'm more than convinced this is the sound of a band subconsciously recreating scattered repressed memories and glimpsed flashbacks of their time aboard the mothership.

You'll be surely trying to decipher the digitised phasing chittering that opens the work, hoping for an idea of just what language this particular group of aliens communicate with, but after a Mellotron- laced lethargic and reflective acoustic acid folk introduction, the UFO dope runs it's course and we begin to fade, David Gilmour standing over us clutching his `More' LP. Brooding, filtering electronics penetrate, offering us only the most electric oranges and most hypnotic tangerines to dream about, as waves of Post strums slowly build comforting arms around us. Weaving electronic winds blow us through the still streams, disorientating memories of empty AM city streets, intense loneliness threatening to overwhelm at any moment. Bubbling flotation tanks shield us from faraway cooing Clusters of monsters aboard cold monolithic spacecrafts, a droning klaxon alerts us as a fortean glistening chubby rain drifts over the Earth (you see, the aliens come down in the rain, therefore making it chubby).

A plodding beat, wavering synths and a sombre bluesy guitar weep away as our visitors make their way across the land, hinting at danger, confusion and possible assimilation. Oh sure, the members of Mindf -, I mean Mindhead will tell you they mean us no harm, but if they do, we'll not go quietly. Twisting guitar melodies wear us down, percussion grows in tension and tempo, humming organ lulls all into a false sense of security. A division bell chimes out over groaning winds, or is it funereal and our time is at an end? Violating white noise encases our minds through metamorphic rocks and pin drop piano menace.

A Maiden-drum gallop takes up the fight of our lives, with the Psychedelic Warlords and the Kings of Speed ensuring we won't go easy. Chugging, snarling riff-heavy guitar attacks, looping synth raybeams and aggressive tribal poundings fight back, forcing the overlords to take a cloudburst flight back to their own world - gotcha suckers! What a marvel to hear...Ozrics, Hidrias, Oresunds, Wilson's and Duul's all coming together, freeing themselves of Agitation and winning back our sanity with a frantic kaleidoscope of colour and sound - only for us to be just as hastily dropped back onto that same acid-fried hillside, with Mr Gilmour strumming that same lulling acoustic psalm to shelter us and ensure that everything is alright...until the next trip. Has it been days, weeks, months that we've been gone? Apparently only 47 minutes, but it would be best if we put this on continuous loop and disappear forever...besides, greasy Homer told me `I'm pretty sure this business will consume our whole lives...'

Djam Karet's `The Trip' - never to be listened to the same way twice, never to have exactly the same emotional response from the listener, but always guaranteed to have you hypnotised and enthralled by this wondrous voyage. Almost thirty years into their career, the band are still exploring, searching, honing timeless psychedelic music to treasure forever, and who knows...if you play it enough, maybe those alien overlords will come and take you on that journey as well. Just ask David Crosby for advice - "Hey! Mr Spaceman, won't you please take me along, I won't do anything wrong!"

Five stars.

Report this review (#1015502)
Posted Friday, August 9, 2013 | Review Permalink
Mellotron Storm
4 stars "The Trip" was recorded between takes during the "Heavy Soul Sessions" and it gave the band a chance to relax before getting back to the heavy lifting of that 2010 recording. This is one long 47 minute track that I would describe as being Psychedelic music in the early PINK FLOYD realm but more modern sounding. I also should mention they use lots of "effects" on this one and we also get mellotron. In the liner notes they mention that no compression or limiting was used in order to give the album a more lively and dynamic sound. Also the picture inside the cover is cool with the psychedelic pink and purple hallway that looks like it goes on forever with the welcome mat that says "The Trip".

It starts off with spacey winds before melancholic strains take over. I like when it calms down making me feel like i'm listening to a PORCUPINE TREE song back in their psychedelic days. A definite Krautrock vibe here that continues until around 8 1/2 minutes in when the spacey winds return but that relaxed vibe continues. A change before 12 1/2 minutes as mellotron and atmosphere take over along with some haunting sounds that come and go. A change after 15 1/2 minutes reminding me of PINK FLOYD.

Drums come in before 19 minutes as the guitar starts to soar somewhat. Some FLOYD-like synths after 23 minutes join in. A change 28 1/2 minutes in with the guitar solo stopping and this haunting atmosphere taking over. This is familiar to what has gone on before. Spacey winds are back as well. A change 33 1/2 minutes in as it turns brighter but that is brief as it quickly returns to that haunting and melancholic style. Love the mellotron choirs 37 minutes in with electronics then the drums take over aggressively a minute later. The guitar comes in and starts to rip it up and we get organ too then synths before it calms right down 45 minutes in. Those melancholic strains form the start are reprised here to end it as our trip ends.

While I still rate "Still No Commercial Potential" as my favourite from this band i'm really glad they released this album which is a nod to those late sixties early seventies Psychedelic bands from another era. Easily 4 stars.

Report this review (#1131912)
Posted Saturday, February 15, 2014 | Review Permalink

DJAM KARET The Trip ratings only

chronological order | showing rating only

Post a review of DJAM KARET The Trip

You must be a forum member to post a review, please register here if you are not.


As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

Copyright Prog Archives, All rights reserved. | Legal Notice | Privacy Policy | Advertise | RSS + syndications

Other sites in the MAC network: — jazz music reviews and archives | — metal music reviews and archives

Donate monthly and keep PA fast-loading and ad-free forever.