by: Brainticket

Psychonaut is more relaxed and has far less electronic elements than either Brainticket's first record, Cottonwoodhill, or the album that followed, Celestial Ocean. Though the record is more straightforward and song-oriented, it still has progressive and experimental elements that keep it from sounding too much like anything else. If anything, the group is not quite focused on any one style on this record, throwing in everything from the ethnic-influenced folk of "Radagacuca" and "One Morning" to the more traditional strummy folk of "Feel the Wind Blow" to the percussion-heavy avant-funk instrumental "Cocò Mary" to the quirky rock assaults of "Watchin' You" and "Like a Place in the Sun." "Like a Place in the Sun" is particularly effective, with dark spoken word vocals alternating in contrast with the sung chorus of its title. Effects and electronics are used much more subtly (especially compared to the earlier record), but are still quite evident. Psychonaut may not be as cohesive as the other early Brainticket albums, but it is also not as chaotic either, and as such may be the group's most accessible record without sacrificing originality. ~ Rolf Semprebon

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