The beginnings of Platipus Records are humble. Simon Berry created and ran this label from his tiny flat in 1993. His only desire in doing so was to expose the music and artists that he loved to a wider audience. Platipus’ early releases made the label stand out immediately due to the high quality of production. These offerings included tracks created under Simon Berry’s own production name of Art of Trance. But it wasn’t until he heard a promo track at a club one night and signed its producer that the fortunes of Platipus Records exploded. The producer was Robert Miles and the track was ‘Children’. The rest, as they say, is history. Spurred on by this initial success, Platipus Records would eventually sign artists such as Moogwai and Praha and release such tracks as Art of Trance’s ‘Madagascar’ and Libra’s ‘Calling Your Name’.
The release of ‘Platipus 10 Squared’ mixed by Tilt and Art of Trance marks Platipus Record’s 10th anniversary. This two CD compilation is a retrospective of the label’s best tracks released during this period. The production levels alone makes this compilation one of the best I’ve heard so far this year. But what makes this compilation truly stand out is that while some of the tracks featured are a few years old, they still sound as gorgeous as they did when they were first released. These are what I consider classics and ones which will never sound aged. Simply put, they’re timeless.
Of the two CDs, CD 1, mixed by Tilt ie Parks & Wilson, would have to lean towards a slightly progressive side of trance without losing any of its dancefloor appeal. It opens with the original mix of ‘Blue’ by Narcotic, which is only a teaser of the tracks that lay ahead. Momentum continues to build with such tracks as Leama’s ‘Melodica’ (Northface Remix), Vicious Circles’ ‘Vicious Circles’ (Andy Gray Remix) and Z2’s ‘I Want You’ (Moshic & Zidan Remix). It is this gradual build that I would refer to as the calm before the storm! But it isn’t until Libra’s ‘Calling Your Name’ (Solar Stone Chillout Version) that this mix reaches its purpose and then takes you onto another level with the likes of Humate’s ‘3.2’ (Bedrock Remix) and then onto the final track, Pob’s ‘Essence’ (Northface Remix). With this final track, you’re left with wanting more which is the perfect lead in for CD2.
CD2 mixed by Art of Trance reveals the uplifting, euphoric side of trance that is missed by many clubbers. This is serious dancefloor material! The CD opens with the beautiful ‘All Because Of You’ (Sunday Club Remix) by Universal State of Mind. This is such a gorgeous track and every time I hear it I can’t help but smile. By the third track, Art of Trance’s ‘Monsoon’ (Original Mix), the pace is slightly increased but not too dramatically. It remains at this consistency with such tracks as Adam Dived’s ‘Into Sea’ (Original Mix), Art of Trance’s ‘Love Washes Over’ (Pherik Remix) and Albion’s ‘Air’ (Original Mix). But it’s the last track that is the icing on the cake, so to speak. It’s Push’s remix of ‘Madagascar’ by Art of Trance. Brilliant remix and a wonderful way to complete this outstanding compilation.
Overall, both CDs were wonderfully mixed by Tilt and Art of Trance. When I first listened to ‘Platipus 10 Squared’, I found myself wishing it was 1998 again and I was in the middle of a packed dancefloor hearing ‘Madagascar’ for the first time. However, after having listened to this continually for the last week, I found myself wishing there were more clubs in Sydney that played this kind of trance again. This is the kind of music that sweeps you away and makes you forget your troubles. You just can’t help it!
Considering this is a reflection of the best tracks released by Platipus Records in their first 10 years, I know I’m looking forward to the next 10 and can only imagine what they will release in the future. One thing for sure, it will definitely be quality trance.
Mon / 15 Jul 2002
CD1 mixed by Tilt:
01 ‘Blue’ (Original Mix) - Narcotic
02 ‘Today’ (Original Mix) – Pob & Taylor
03 ‘Melodica’ (Northface Remix) - Leama
04 ‘Rock Rose’ (Filterheadz Remix) - Star
05 ‘Vicious Circles’ (Andy Gray Remix) – Vicious Circles
06 ‘Changes’ (Khz Remix) Innate
07 ‘I Want You’ (Moshic & Zidan Remix) – Z2
08 ‘Calling Your Name’ (Solar Stone Chillout Version) - Libra
09 ‘3.2’ (Bedrock Remix) - Humate
10 ‘Essence’ (Northface Remix) - Pob
CD2 mixed by Art of Trance:
01 ‘All Because Of You’ (Sunday Club Remix) – Universal State of Mind
02 ‘Seadog’ (Way Out West Remix) - Clanger
03 ‘Monsoon’ (Original Mix) – Art of Trance
04 ‘Kala Chant (Part 1)’ - Praha
05 ‘Into Sea’ (Original Remix) – Adam Dived
06 ‘Gothic Dream’ (Original Mix) - Dawnseekers
07 ‘Love Washes Over’ (Pherik Remix) – Art of Trance
08 ‘Do You Hear Me’ (Art of Trance Remix) - Indiana
09 ‘Lithium’ (Original Mix) - Paragliders
10 ‘Air’ (Original Mix) - Albion
11 ‘Viola’ (Original Mix) - Moogwai
12 ‘Madagascar’ (Push Remix) – Art of Trance