There are many artists who I’d describe as enigmatic. When it comes to producers and DJs, there aren’t as many. Falling into the category of enigmatic are Psychemagik. They’ve definitely ticked the no publicity box. This means many people won’t have heard of the legendary crate-digging, production and DJ-ing team. That’s means you won’t have heard some of their innovative edits, remixes and DJ mixes. Then there’s the compilations, including Psychemagik Presents Magic Circles and Psychemagik Presents Magik Sunrise. Both albums have been among my favorite compilations of the past two years. They showcased Psychemagik’s crate-digging, DJ-ing, editing and production skills. So may their latest compilation, Diabolical Synthetic Fantasia. However, it may not. Confused, I’ll explain?

When I realized that Psychemagik had released a new compilation, I decided that given the quality of their two previous compilations, I had to review Diabolical Synthetic Fantasia. Having picked up a copy of this self-released compilation, I discovered an element of mystery surrounds this double album. Like their previous compilations, Disc Two is a seamless DJ mix. Disc One of Diabolical Synthetic Fantasia features eighteen tracks. The only problem, I’ve know idea what tracks they are. Nowhere and I mean nowhere, is there any details available of the music on Diabolical Synthetic Fantasia. This is not just frustrating, but annoying. After all, are the tracks new material from Psychemagik or hidden gems unearthed during their legendary crate-digging expeditions?

Psychemagik we know are among the most passionate and persistent crate-diggers, when it comes to unearthing hidden gems. Their quest in unearthing those elusive hidden gems, sees Psychemagik go where other crate diggers fear to tread. Whether it’s dusty basements, thrift stores, warehouses or record shops, nowhere is off limits. As a result, and unlike many other crate diggers, Psychemagik’s choice of music is truly eclectic. Rather than focus on one genre of music, no genre of music, it seems, is overlooked. Given that Psychemagik have such eclectic and discerning taste in music, it’s no surprise that they’re the go-to guys for DJs looking for those elusive hidden gems. Plenty of hidden gems can be found on Psychemagik’s latest double album Diabolical Synthetic Fantasia, which I’ll tell you about.

Diabolical Synthetic Fantasia is best described as a compelling and captivating collection of music. So much so, that it brings new meaning to the word eclectic. Fusing cosmic disco, Balearica, psychedelic funk, Nu-Disco, ambient, soul, electronica and Middle Eastern beats, it was a breathtaking and mind-blowing musical journey. Subtleties and nuances unfold during the eighteen tracks. Complex and multilayered, musical influences and genres melt into one lysergic mass on Diabolical Synthetic Fantasia. It’s like a musical adventure, where surprises await during this eighteen track journey.

During this truly eclectic compilation, hidden gems and musical nuggets are discovered. The Psychemagik guys surpassed their previous efforts, combining numerous musical genres and influences. Everything from ambient, Balearic, folk, funk, jazz, jazz-funk, psychedelia and rock is thrown into Psychemagik’s musical melting pot. What comes out is a mesmeric fusion that captivates and compels. You’re taken on a musical journey, one that veers between dramatic, dreamy, surreal and trippy, to beautiful, understated and melancholy. Other times the music is dramatic, moody and broody. On other tracks, the music is sassy, feisty and features strutting divas.  One thing the music never is, is boring. Not at all. Certainly not when Psychemagik are in charge of the music. Subtleties and surprises are sprung, while Psychemagik  aren’t afraid of changing direction. Using the musical equivalent of a handbrake turn, they perform a volte face. That’s what makes Diabolical Synthetic Fantasia such a captivating and refreshing compilation. 

The reason I refer to Diabolical Synthetic Fantasia as a refreshing compilation, is that Psychemagik eschew the safe and sterile music that pollutes other compilations. Psychemagik take a different direction. They’re brave and bold, and seem determined to give the compilation world a shakeup. To do this, do they put their crate-digging and creative skills to good use? After all, they know to lay their hands on tracks others can only dream of. 

Whether any feature on Diabolical Synthetic Fantasia we’re not told? Psychemagik are keeping their cards close to their chest, given the lack of a track listing. Indeed, Diabolical Synthetic Fantasia is shrouded in unnecessary mystery. It’s akin to the old days of Northern Soul DJs covering up labels. If the eighteen tracks on Diabolical Synthetic Fantasia aren’t some of Psychemagik’s hidden gems,  I can only surmise that many, if not all of these tracks are their own productions, edits and remixes. If it is, then they’re hugely talented and innovative. This will also keep them way ahead of the competition. However, we don’t know whose responsible for the music on the mysterious Diabolical Synthetic Fantasia.

What I do know, is that they’re the go-to-guys for anyone looking for that elusive hidden gem. Thankfully, they’ve kept a plentiful supply of hidden gems to themselves. Whether any feature on Diabolical Synthetic Fantasia, I don’t know? I can say that Diabolical Synthetic Fantasia is crammed full of quality music. Laid-back, chilled-out, soulful, funky, jazz-tinged and dance-floor friendly, the music on Diabolical Synthetic Fantasia is genre-melting, lysergic musical adventure that’s well worth experiencing.



  1. Marko

    Track one is Saratoga Space Messengers – Surf. I don’t know if it’s re-edit or not as I’m still waiting for delivery and I’ve only heard a brief preview. Lack of tracklist may also be because the comp is probably unlicensed.

    • Hi Marko,

      Thanks for your comments. I wondered if the opening track was Surf. I’ve suspicions about a few of the other tracks, but wasn’t going to guess. I was really disappointed about the lack of a track listing. Writing a review without a track-listing makes things doubly difficult. It might seem a small thing, but often buy albums after hearing a track on compilation. As for the compilation not being licensed, surely nobody would risk that nowadays? If you find any more information about the compilation, get in touch. Hope you enjoy it.

      Best Wishes,

  2. excellent set. it contains Al Foster’s ‘Night of the Wolf’

    • Hi,

      Thanks for your message. I’ve worked out many of the tracks. I wish they’d put a track listing on it. It would’ve saved some time. It’s annoying when they don’t add a track listing. I mean, what happen if we hear a great track and have no idea who it’s from?

      Checked out your site. Really liked it.

      Best Wishes,

  3. Ilya

    Hey there, was wondering if you had worked out the original of Track 2? Would be a great help!

    • Hi there,

      I’m sorry, but like you, I haven’t worked out what track 2 is. That’s one of the tracks I can’t work out. It’s a real nuisance there being no track listing on the album. If I find out, I’ll email you.

      Best Wishes,


  4. Hi Derek – nice review of one of the best comps this year imo. Totally agree about lack of official tracklisting – a real shame. All tracks were new to me except the final one. Any chance you can share the song IDs you have worked out please?

    • Hi Ross,

      As soon as I can get a list of all the tracks I’ll post it online. There’s a couple I’m just not sure of. They could be original tracks. I’ve only ever come across one compilation without a track listing and it was equally frustrating.

      Have you heard the other Pyschemagik compilations? They’re two of the best I’ve heard in the past couple of years. I’d recommend them to anyone.

      Best Wishes,

      • Thanks Derek. I’d love to see at least some of the tracklisting if poss.

        Yeah, I’m really digging Psychemagik’s compilations. Ace stuff. Can’t wait for “Magik Sunset” due out next year on Leng.

  5. Ilya

    Yeah, it’s a tough’un!

    Thanks for getting back to me anyway, am really enjoying the blog!


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