Galactic Agents,
Human Contact
(New Earth, 2002)

Human Contact by the Galactic Agents is a background CD that can best be described as trance, lounge or electronica designed with chilling out in mind. As I have no promotional material, the liner notes are minimal, and the New Earth website lacks bio information for the artists they promote, I am unsure whether this is a band or a single individual.

Regardless of the number of "agents" involved, this music will appeal to those lovers of new age music that incorporates the ancient past with the future, archaic chants with the technologically advanced sounds of a computer or synthesizer, and the repetitious beat that comes from looping other musicians' material. In other words, it appears that the Galactic Agents sampled a lot of diverse sounds and packaged it into a CD they could call their own -- something that has been done many-a-time by other bands who create this type of music.

Is this a bad thing? Not necessarily. The 10 tracks, while not the best this genre of music has to offer, are successful in transporting the listener to a level of calmness that you certainly won't experience with Gangster Rap. I really like "Electric Zikr," which was inspired by a Dervish prayer (if I am understanding the cryptic liner notes correctly). The beat is simple, yet easily hooks you with the light Middle Eastern sound backed up by an electronic drumbeat. At less than five minutes, the song is just about the right length.

The same cannot be said of "Brown Eagle's Daughter." This track incorporates a love song of the Nomadic Ounkha Tribe of the Gobi Desert. Unfortunately, it goes on a little too long at six minutes, transforming a feeling of tranquility to one of impatience as you just want the tune to get over with already!

If you like the didgeridoo, you can hear it on three tracks, including "Earth Passport Denied," "Afro Tech Suite" and "Future Dreamtime." Of the three, "Afro Tech Suite" has the best beat and background vocals. This suite is the longest piece on the CD at a little under eight minutes but, unlike "Brown Eagle's Daughter," it doesn't seem overly long. (The liner notes attribute the performance on the didgeridoo to Subhira, but once again, I am unsure whether this is a band or an individual.)

I am not overly impressed with Human Contact. New Earth also released A Universe To Come by Tulku, which, in my opinion, would be a better place to spend your money. If you are truly interested in electronica/world music with a beat/trance, however, check out Amethystium's CD Odonata. If you already have these albums, or simply have a lot of money burning holes in your pocket, then I might suggest that you get acquainted with the Galactic Agents.

- Rambles
written by Wil Owen
published 22 February 2003

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