Trance/Techno Mystery
September 11, 2004 5:16 PM   Subscribe

Long-winded and obscure "identify this recording" question for trance/techno experts. [MI]

I lost a tape in 1997, which I had listened to constantly for several years. It was an unlabelled tape I got from my sister, who got it from her friend, who got it from her boyfriend, who got it from a friend who was into techno. I'm guessing the origin of the tape was quite early 1990s. The above people deny remembering the existence of this tape.

The music was very mellow trance - not like modern trance with hard synths and snare-drum buildups - just a very simple electronic 4/4 beat, lots of smooth, beautiful, melodic synths, and the occasional creepy vocal sample. Quite minimalist. More "looking at the stars" music than rave music. The only track on the tape I recognise was "Dreams" by Quench - the other songs had a similar feel, that was probably almost the "hardest" sounding track.

So, what was I listening to - does it sound familiar to anyone? An actual "Quench" album? A compilation? Or just some guy's mix tape?

If all else fails, can anyone reccomend some early 1990s trance that has the same sort of mystical feel as "Dreams"?
posted by Jimbob to Media & Arts (15 answers total)
what color tape and when was it issued? lettering on tape worn of or clear with label?
posted by ethylene at 5:18 PM on September 11, 2004

Response by poster: It was, I believe a tape of a tape, not the original recording, which makes it difficult. But, it came into my hands probably in about 1995, so it was definately released earlier than that.
posted by Jimbob at 5:23 PM on September 11, 2004

This might be obvious, but have you checked through the discogs list?
posted by Gyan at 5:34 PM on September 11, 2004

i have a rough idea but someone i'm seeing in an hour can confirm for me or come up with a range. i only know the basic seminal stuff of that genre.
(let you know what i find if you haven't found out by tues.)
posted by ethylene at 5:35 PM on September 11, 2004

just saw the previous post
(caught me at the door)
i assumed it was a mixed tape, sorry, ta

(btw, who gets premade casettes in '95 that aren't free promotional eps?)
posted by ethylene at 5:41 PM on September 11, 2004

Sounds more like ambient than trance. I would post your question to usenet music groups like alt.binaries.mp3.electronic and *.ambient. You're likely to find other stuff you like there, too.

Good luck!
posted by squirrel at 5:57 PM on September 11, 2004

Response by poster: Wow, thanks for discogs Gyan, I didn't know that existed! It would be nice if they provided dates for released on that page, though.

Searching for anything about Quench is a pain, because there appears to be a Christian band by the same name...
posted by Jimbob at 6:19 PM on September 11, 2004

Response by poster: Actually, it might be described more as ambient - definately ambient techno though - the tracks all had definate beats.

I've made an effort at recreating a few bars of one of the tracks I remember from the recording in FruityLoops- simple synth melody line, trance drums, mild acid synths. Download it here:

posted by Jimbob at 6:58 PM on September 11, 2004

Download where?
posted by squirrel at 12:19 AM on September 12, 2004

Oh, wait... is this like a zen koan?

a h-ref equals
open quote close quote
close carrot...
carrot slash a close carrot

posted by squirrel at 12:35 AM on September 12, 2004

I'm pretty sure that's Flaming June by BT. No vocals on the version I've got tho'. Maybe a remix?
posted by punilux at 5:58 AM on September 12, 2004

Ah, I see the dates don't match, but the track could of course been circulating on mix tapes for a long time. Even if it's not, I wholly recommend the first two BT albums for the type of stuff you're after. In that vein, you might also like Jam & Spoon's 'Triptomatic Fairy Tales 2001', Paul Van Dyk's 'Seven Ways', and Irresistible Force's 'Flying High'. (There are zillions of others, those three just happened to be the first I could find quickly).
posted by punilux at 6:22 AM on September 12, 2004

.. and finally, let's try a link where you can actually hear the f&$%ing track! Feeling a little ambient myself, this morning...
posted by punilux at 6:31 AM on September 12, 2004

Much as it pains me to say it, you may have been listening to 'dream house', which is usually wishy-washy sweet melodies over non-threatening beats. Kind of soft psy-trance.

For an exemplar of this type of music (with a bit of class) check out Sasha and Digweed - Northern Exposure.

The Dutch and Germans were at it in the early nineties too, as well as the French.
Laurent Garnier playing 'The Beat Just Goes Straight On And On' Transform remix as the encore at the Orbit, happy days!
posted by asok at 6:41 AM on September 12, 2004

Response by poster: That's all been very helpful - with all those links I'm sure I'll be able to find some equivalent listening.
posted by Jimbob at 6:00 PM on September 12, 2004

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