Art of Trance

Wildlife on One

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AllMusic Review by

Naming oneself after a specific genre isn't the safest of decisions; while one may get the benefits of riding the crest of a trend, one will also surely suffer harder than most when the genre crashes into dark, unfashionable times. So it's not a good idea to call your band "New Kids of New Wave," "Big Beat Buffoons," or "U.K. Garage That Sure Is the Kind of Music We Play." Simon Berry's Art of Trance should've taken such pointers. Because Wildlife on One is an acceptable, yet uncharacteristic debut that, admittedly, does not live up to his recording name. There are the verdant beats of opener "Kaleidoscope" and the operatic stabs in "Gloria," yet most of it still sounds half-baked. Those out for huge build-ups and teary-eyed washes of synths will be sorely disappointed, which is okay. The main problem is not that Art of Trance seems more concerned with the third-world Goa influences than Gatecrasher glow-stick shindigs but its attempt and failure to create a cerebral trance version of Orbital's classical instrumentation that causes the most disappointment. Wildlife on One is simply a stiff album. An attempt to reach some level of intellectual splendor yet failing. Even when the name might make them wary, post-club dance fans will only take a slight interest in this small diversion of "intelligent" trance.

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