Burning Mushroom

So I was thinking last night about how much I wanted to go up to Desiderata Festival in NY State and see Infected Mushroom but also how I probably can't really afford it and how we'd be pushing it to get there in time to catch their Friday night set. And I thought to myself, "I wonder if they're playing any other shows nearby around that time." So I looked up their tour dates for August and, alas, nothing any closer or any more convenient. Then, while I was there, I figured I'd click on "show all tour dates" just for the hell of it. And then I saw it: "Sept 3, Gerlach NV".

Holy hell, Infected Mushroom are playing at Burning Man this year!

For the uninitiated Gerlach is the tiny town that is the closest civilization to the Black Rock Desert, the site of Burning Man. There's no way IM are playing there, they could only be performing at Burning Man itself. I am, shall we say, quite excited.

IM are one of the most innovative and exciting acts on the planet, emerging from the Israeli psytrance scene and now forging new ground as some sort of hybrid psy/rock electronic band.Their new music is an obliterating blend of psytrance, rock, hip hop and, occasionally, classical. IM were the first psytrance act I really got into - their album Classical Mushroom, released in 2000, defined the genre when I first started listening to it. Their subsequent album, BP Empire, contained the first hints of how unique they would become as they started really busting out of psytrance orthodoxy, and being criticized for it by the purists, as such artists always are. The track "Dancing with Kadafi", in particular, brought in ambient and world influences, and remains one of my favourite tracks of all time. Have a listen. If you haven't heard it before you'll be glad you did.

Their subsequent albums "Converting Vegetarians", "IM The Supervisor" and "Vicious Delicious" (follow links to listen to tracks) continued a trend towards more rock (and sometimes hip hop) elements and use of percussion, instrumentation and vocals, with their current style and live show being an exhilarating blend of psytrance and metal,always maintaining an extraordinary inventiveness and disregard for music boundaries.

I've seen them three times but never outdoors. Never at bloody burning man, with ten thousand of my closest friends, flame throwers accentuating the breakdowns with massive bursts of fire over our heads, the desert stretching away into the darkness behind us, giant ducks with spotlights for eyes and fire for hair watching over us.

NB: My mental image is basically the Carl Cox gig at Opulent Temple at Burning Man last year but with better music:


This is what Infected Mushroom do live:



and, for a rawer vibe:


For those coming to Burning Man: prepare to be infected.

This year's event just get's more and more exciting as we approach the home stretch for preparations. I'll have to run down our full plans in a future post, we're all over it this year, I can't wait.