Wednesday, December 5, 2001

Mystic Groove

Posted By on Wed, Dec 5, 2001 at 12:00 AM

If Mystic Groove gets into you, you’re gone. Just gone. No choice but to go on ahead and float. My advice? Let it. Trust this record to do its job. It’s up to the task at hand: Transport you to that interior sound world beyond the cliché of such word pairings as “Mystic” and “Groove” and interrupt the daily collisions of life, appointments and unwelcome telephone visitations.

Of course, dance music has a history of bandying about quasi-mystical and quasi-philosophical terminology like there’s not much real meaning behind the words. Rather, these unfortunate descriptors function as dry-hump verbal runs at quantifying the transcendent experience of the music. Here, again, these words are bandied about and here, again, they fail.

Here are some that will help you frame your processing of this record, though: Quango Records’ raison d’être and the tagline (convenient!) are both “Music for a Global Culture.” In that sprit, Mystic Groove is a collection of trans-Asian sounds, focusing on musics from India, Turkey, the Arabian peninsula and other stops along the way. It mingles the traditional with the electronic, the old Silk Road world with the Western one and youthful vigor with respectful traditions. It’s often a compelling concoction.

Najma’s “Ghoom Charakhana” benefits from Talvin Singh’s echo-trippy mixology. Black Star Liner’s eerie, nervous “Harmon Session Special,” keeps the proceedings from sliding toward the middle of the road as does MC Sultan’s Burundi-beat cut “Der Bauch.” The tracks were recorded over the last five years, but compilation producer Bruno Guez has picked his tracks wisely, delivering a timeless mix. Oh, and there’s also well-designed CD-ROM content.

One can see Mystic Groove headed for heavy rotation as both aural wallpaper for newly minted hiperatis at dinner parties or as dance floor and chill-out music for legit, worldly electro-dance heads and hold its own and then some in either context. And spanning that gap is an effort that’s lost many a compilation to the abyss.

E-mail Chris Handyside at


We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Detroit Metro Times. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Detroit Metro Times, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at

Detroit Metro Times works for you, and your support is essential.

Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of Detroit and beyond.

Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.

Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep Detroit's true free press free.

More by Chris Handyside

Read the Digital Print Issue

April 14, 2021

View more issues


Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.

Best Things to Do In Detroit

© 2021 Detroit Metro Times - Contact Us

Website powered by Foundation