The CLUAS Archive: 1998 - 2011


Psychonavigation Records Y9Review Snapshot: Keith Downey’s Ireland based brain child Psychonavigation Records celebrates its 33rd release since setting up nine years ago. It's testament that, in an industry where labels - like acts - come and go,  that Psychonavigation Records is not only still going, but growing too.

Cluas Verdict? 7/10

Full Review:
Psychonavigation Records was born out of the frustration of a DJ who wanted to get unsigned music out there. It joyfully heralds various acts and DJs alike and gives them a platform to release their music. It’s an admirable as well as a very successful venture and some of the fruits are in this Y9 (ninth year) anniversary compilation.

The first thing to note is that there is a broad spectrum covered in the record label. The opening track is a quiet atmospheric number from Buckminster Fuzeboard. It’s a nice opener. Nice percussion with a flute hook as an overtone. “Your Day in the Sun” by GEL-SOL follows. The sound of waves coming in act as a backdrop, unfortunately other than that it’s a monotone lazy affair. “What a Wonderful Life” from Roddy Monks raises the bar. It has a nice lick and a catchy beat drawing the listener. There’s a lot going on and it’s interesting. Three tracks in and I can honestly say it’s difficult to imagine this stuff being played in a club. It’s mood music. “What a Wonderful Life” would find a nice home on a soundtrack for Spa Treatment/Massages.

The record rolls on and the variation of the artists becomes evident on “Spinning” from Tiny Magnetic Pets. A nice delicate vocal hangs over a constant melody. It’s a pleasant track. “Miles and Miles” by Aza and Eoin is less eventful and plods along with little or no direction. Like most compilations, the highs are high and the lows are, well dull.

More highs that need checking out include Matthew Devereux represented here with “I Love You Like A Robot”. There is a tasty acoustic strings intro accompanied with an atmospheric backdrop melody. It’s one of the finest tracks on the record. Other highlights include the wonderful “Soulsearch” by Brawdcast, & R.S.A.G with “Talk Back Crawl Back”. These tracks really demonstrate the variety of the label, mixing electronica with soul and hip hop. Excellent stuff.

Much of the music on the compilation is carefully put together and testament to a guy who wanted to showcase what he saw as talent without a voice. Psychonavigation Records on this representation is a growing prospering label, rich with talent from all musical styles. Not just electronica and dance, but soul and a little hip hop too. Well worth checking out.

Kevin Coleman

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