Review Summary: Infected Mushroom’s crowning achievement and arguably the pinnacle of psychedelic dance music.
It’s midnight. With great precision you gather up your scattered belongings, double check your pockets, and then stride impatiently out the door, slamming it behind you as if closing the chapter on another page of existence in the great book of the year.
You find yourself in the bus to Brixton, humming frantic songs as if you were singing the refrain to life itself; joyously, impatiently and with unparalleled vitality. Soon you arrive at the venue; a dank, rundown theatre that is still standing only because of the sound that fills it. The inflated, pitch black lungs of the hall hold in breath like a pearl diver floating languidly above the ocean floor; this Atlas of sound holds up the ceiling, preventing cracked ribs from staving in. Handing over your ticket you enter eagerly and make a beeline straight to the toilets, kick the door to the last cubicle shut and seal yourself off from the world.
Emerging minutes later, you head straight to the stage. Around you, the crowd resembles a buzzing swarm of bees; a constantly pulsating mass that emanates energy and heat like a burning flame. As the first notes sound and the tribal, throbbing bass gives way to a scattered piano line, excitement rises to fever pitch. A few rhythmic clicks introduce the odyssey of sound as the cloud of human particles swells with invisible force, vibrating with pure, unadulterated power. Finally, it’s time.
Fast forward an hour. Sound, stretched to breaking point across the vastness of infinity, has begun to tear at the seams. Individual notes no longer have any meaning; existence has melted into noise - alpha and omega become one. The devastating voice of God reverberates through the endless shadows, shattering your frail being. Time and space merge in this boundless furnace, and as the heat and the glow become unbearable you fall with a cry into the vastness of the divine embrace. Spiralling out of your body, your mind is pulled apart by the multifaceted tendrils of perpetuity. Individual trains of thought lose their outline, shimmering faintly before vanishing into the blackness; this is what Jung meant when he spoke of universal consciousness. All is lost in the uncontrollable movement of bodies, and the feral sacrificial dance itself becomes existence rather than just a trivial consequence of it. These frantic motions are no longer confined to the meagre prison of space; they span the universe, brushing aside celestial bodies like crumbs from a table. Stars are born and burn with excruciating brightness for a million years, then devour themselves in a sumptuous act of self cannibalism that resonates through the swirling cosmos. Infinity in all its regal splendour lies before you; countless galaxies crowned with swirling gases, black holes yawning in the overwhelming boredom of myriad millennia. For a few precious minutes, you behold trillions of breathing worlds, insignificant marbles that tremble in the palm of your hand as you drift across the illimitable fabric of existence.
Much too soon, the final notes die away into nothingness, echoing candles of sound that, having burnt down, flicker with last gasps of breath before dissipating forever. Your consciousness seeps back into your body, water pouring from the dark womb of perception into the shadowy void of your shattered synapses, filling the emptiness with wisps of thought and shards of realization. Agonizingly slowly, you become aware of your surroundings. The stage is deserted. Your companions, an exhausted, sweat stained fragment of humanity, stand slumped around you, panting like dogs. It’s time to go home.
Stumbling away into the early morning fog, tentatively avoiding the pale pimples of chewing gum that lie scattered across the face of the pavement, you suddenly hear a voice. A leaflet is thrust at you; a ragged hand grasps your arm. An old, worn face stares at you with a clouded gaze, eyes swimming in a sea of wrinkles that rise and fall like so many tides.
‘Are you looking for God?’
‘No thanks’, you whisper with a knowing smile and a dreamy look into your eyes. With colossal effort, you open your mouth one last time. ‘I’ve already found Him.’