Tangerine Dream - The Electronic Magic of Tangerine Dream: The Anthology

Career-spanning overview weighted towards later period

In the early 70s German rock
bands and classically-trained
musicians armed themselves with
synths and set the controls for
the heart of the sun under the
Krautrock banner. Particularly
fascinating were startlinglypackaged
outings on the Ohr
label, including several by
Tangerine Dream, whose albums
until 1973 were spookily
atmospheric, often using
Mellotron to build eerie banks of
melodies, then synths to charter
the unknown. 1973’s Atem was
generally regarded as the turning
point, leading to a deal with Virgin
which yielded the following year’s
highly-successful Phaedra, whose
hauntingly beautiful Mysterious
Semblance At The Strand Of
Nightmares is the highlight of this
new compilation from Los Angeles
operation Cleopatra.

The box set follows a similar
format to their recent MC5
compilation: two CDs, badge and
sticker. The music kicks off
intriguingly with Edgar Froese’s
pre-Dream garage-psych outfit
The Ones and 1972’s Ultima
Thule single, while Asteroid
Agenda is an example of this
classic period when they were
truly floating in space. The
remainder of the two discs then
electro-glide through live or re-recorded
versions of tracks
mainly dating from the mid-70s
onwards, all soaring melodies
and pulsating sequencers,
demonstrating why Froese and
crew became so in demand for
movie soundtracks and mountain
climbing documentaries.

3 stars 3 stars 3 stars

Purple Pyramid | 2413 (2-CD)

Reviewed by Kris Needs
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