Freak out: the trance carnival
Graham St John [+]
Chapter 6 approaches the vexing subject of trance dance itself, the raison d’être of psychedelic trance culture. Dissatisfaction with the term “trance” inspires a heuristic acknowledging a range of activity within the “weekend societies” of psyculture. The contemporary Goatrance party is rooted in the cosmic carnival, which is shown to augment the carnivalesque with a Space Age psychedelic aesthetic. In the music and the events downstream from its Goa origins, progressive and ludic sensibilities are demonstrated to comprise the trance experience. The trance culture that fomented within these recurrent events has given rise to what may more accurately be named neotrance, an ecstasic/theatrical dynamic where surrender to the funky flow and freak performance are integral to the mix.