Also known as: Uptempo Psy, UK Psy, Classic Psy , Goa Psy
BPM range: 145—148
Psychedelic is probably the most iconic subgenre of Psytrance music, with driving basslines and futuristic sounds often created using FM synthesis. Pioneered by the London-based labels like Alchemy, Flying Rhino and TIP Records, among the others, this subgenre has also become known as the UK Psy.
Also known as: Psy-Trance, Classy, 140-BPM-Psy
BPM range: 138—142
This subgenre organically fits between Progressive Psy and the classic Psychedelic in the BPM range, combining the best elements of these two. It is arguably the most common Psytrance subgenre now that sounds on the festivals all over the world, and in fact, if you hear the word “Psytrance”, it’s most likely referred to this particular subgenre.
Also known as: Psy-Prog, Progressive
BPM range: 134—138
Emerging in the mid 00’s in Europe, Progressive Psy has quickly expanded to become one of the most common Psytrance subgenre. And it’s very diverse too, featuring a quite wide range of vibes. Progressive Psy doesn’t utilise one particular type of sound, but rather focuses on the groove, the flow, and how it progresses over time.
Also known as: Minimal, Deep Psychedelic, Zenonesque
BPM range: 130—135
Although this subgenre might be formally called Progressive, it’s typically slower, deeper and less melodic than the Progressive Psy we know today. Tracks of this subgenre builds-up slowly, allowing artists to focus more on things like reverb tails, delay effects, little percussion tricks, and other subtle details.
Also known as: Triplets, Ethnic Psy
BPM range: 136—140
Pioneered by Juno Reactor and then recently popularised by Vini Vici, Tribal Psy utilises triples bassline pattern along with some ethnic drums and vocal samples. Some producers overused triples so much in the recent years, so at some point, having a triplet drop is almost considered as a cliché.
Also known as: The Offbeat, Progressive Trance, Hamburg Psy
BPM range: 134—140
The Offbeat Psy uses a specific bassline pattern at which a single bass note hits between four-on-the-floor kick drums, hence the name. It is originated from Hamburg, Germany, in the late 00’s. Tracks in this subgenre often include sampled speech samples processed with the gate or sidechain effects.
Also known as: Psychedelic Techno, Psytek
BPM range: 128—140
As the title suggests, this subgenre is a blend of Psytrance and Techno that combines various elements from these two. And since both Psytrance and Techno can vary in tempo and vibe, there is pretty much no boundaries to this subgenre too: it can go from deep and minimal to hard and rough.
Also known as: Uplifting Psy
BPM range: 138—140
Psy Tech-Trance is a product of a clash between Psytrance and a regular Trance worlds. Tracks in this subgenre typically have the Psy bassline, longer uplifting breakdowns, and acidic riffs at the climax. Although some devoted psytrance fans don’t accept this subgenre as a part of the Psy scene and culture, it grows pretty rapidly, especially in the US.
Also known as: Psychedelic Breaks, Psy Tech-Funk, Broken Beats
BPM range: 130—138
Psybreak is a relatively new subgenre that emerged in the last 00’s. It combines heavy Psytrance bassline and squelch sounds with a Breaks rhythm, classic Electro snares, and sometimes even Industrial scrapes.
Also known as: Commercial Psy, Pop Psy
BPM range: 130—138
This isn’t quite a subgenre, but rather consequences of when Psytrance artists go mainstream: it often includes vocals and cheesy melodies to appeal to a broader audience. Although these tracks typically labelled in stores as a “Psytrance”, let’s be clear about it: it’s not Psytrance, really.
Also known as: Goa, 604 Psy
BPM range: 135—150
Goa Trance is the ancestor of all Psytrance music as a whole we know today. Formed in the 80’s in Goa, India, by the modern hippies of that time, Goa Trance got its global recognition in the mid 90’s. Goa Trance is considered as “organic”, that is to say, it does not have the typical “metallic” sounds of electronic music and often presents an oriental aesthetics in its melodies, mostly with Indian consonance, as well as various tribal elements from the Indian culture such as references to the Buddhist or Hinduist mythology and mysticism. Although Goa Trance is considered as an oldschool genre now, some artists and labels are still releasing it, referring to it as a New School or Neogoa.
Also known as: Uplifting Goa, Morning Goa Trance
BPM range: 145—160
Nitzhonot is a subgenre that formed from the classic Goa Trance in the mid 90’s in Israel, and it literally means “victories” in Hebrew. It is typically faster than Goa Trance, with high-pitched kick drums and fast-paced oriental melodies. And just like Goa Trance, Nitzhonot considered an underground subgenre among Psytrance as a whole, which is an underground style itself.
Also known as: Morning Fullon, Israeli Full-on
BPM range: 140—148
Full-on is a dynamic, playful, and musical subgenre of Psytrance that appeals to a broader audience because of its positive vibe. Unlike of a typical straight Psytrance bassline pattern, the Full-on basssline plays on various notes across few octaves, creating a special rhythm and melody that way. The period of 2004–2009 is considered as the “golden age” of Full-on, before Progressive Psy took over the global Psy scene.
Also known as: Twilight, South African Full-on
BPM range: 145—150
Night Full-on is the evil twin of Full-on: it has the same fast-paced bass and leads but with a darker vibe and twisted, synthetic sounds. On the festivals, Twilight Psy typically sound during the night-time, hence the name.
Also known as: Cyberdelic, Alien Psy
BPM range: 140—155
Dark Psy name speaks for itself. This subgenre is dark, cold, and themed with a horror special effects. Sometimes it’s called Cyberdelic, which stands for “cybernetic + psychedelic”, due to a massive amount of artificial sounds, lasers, and other alien sounds. Many Dark Psy producers are hailing from Russia, so you might see this genre referred as a Russian style.
Also known as: Forest Psychedelic, Scandinavian Dark Psy
BPM range: 150—160
Forest Psy is very similar to Dark Psy in many ways, but it’s less robotic-themed and focuses more on the ambient noises, nature atmosphere, and the spooky sounds you would hear in a dark psychedelic forest. Filled with swarming and teeming effects, it is also slightly faster than Dark Psy and arranged in a straightforward manner, almost with no breakdowns and beat interruptions.
Also known as: Hitek Psy, Psycore
BPM range: 170—230
Hi-Tech is a Psytrance style strongly influenced by Dark Psytrance, Psycore, and Full-On. It is characterized by a synthetic aesthetic pushed to the extreme. In terms of tempo, Hi-Tech vary from 150 BPM to over 200 BPM, making it and Psycore the fastest Psychedelic Trance styles. Unlike Psycore, Hi-Tech can present an absence of atmosphere in favor of a non-regular melodic structure. In addition, Hi-Tech is generally the least predictable and constant of all Psychedelic Trance styles.
Also known as: Suomisaundi, Finnish Psy
BPM range: 135—145
Originated from Finland, Suomi is probably the most free-form subgenre of Psychedelic music allowing artists to go wild and experiment both musically and production-wise. Suomisaundi tracks are usually very melodic, including heavy influences from early Goa, tribal beats and Acid Trance tracks, as well as funky guitar and keyboard loops and sounds from or reminiscent of 80’s.
Also known as: Psybient, Psychedelic Chillout, Downtempo Psy
BPM range: 90—120
Psychill is a downtempo genre that often seeks to reach a state of deep relaxation, close to meditation and lucid dreaming. It utilises various elements of Goa Trance and Psychedelic music in general, and typically has a classic Goa kick drum, 303’s sounds, and lush atmospheric pads.
Also known as: Chill, Ambient, Downtempo
BPM range: 80—110
Chillout music is very similar to Psychill but less psychedelic influenced. Formally speaking, Chillout is a subgenre of electronic music in general, not Psytrance in particular. However, historically it has a deep connection to the Psy scene and today you can hear many Chillout artists playing at the Psytrance festivals.