Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Dream Roots Collection
Genres: Dance & Electronic, Alternative Rock, New Age, Pop, Rock
Incredible Five CD Box Set, Including One Previously Unreleased CD. Covers the Period from 1970-1973, the Pink Years, and from 1983-1987, Known as the Blue Years. Contains a 60 Page Booklet with 95 Photos and Extensive Lin... more »
Incredible Five CD Box Set, Including One Previously Unreleased CD. Covers the Period from 1970-1973, the Pink Years, and from 1983-1987, Known as the Blue Years. Contains a 60 Page Booklet with 95 Photos and Extensive Liner Notes by Mark Perendergast.
An odd collection but pretty good value for all that
Steve Benner | Lancaster, UK | 07/03/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Subtitled "The Tangerine Dream pink-blue Box set" this 5-CD collection is a rather bizarre survey of TD's recorded works from two periods of their history. The so-called Pink Years (1970-73) were the years before the band's signing with Virgin Records. The five albums of this period are covered here by a total of 11 tracks, comprising some 55 minutes of music, taking up the first of the CDs in the set. These tracks are not simply extracts from the original discs, however, but are mostly "recomposed" versions based only loosely on the originals. Some snippets of the original material are detectable underneath the drifts of thick new synthesiser textures that have been laid over them but sometimes only just. I suspect that most fans of TD's early music will absolutely hate this disc. Certainly, much of the new material seems to have been added with little sensitivity to the original and gives the impression that it has been produced in order to appeal to those who only know Tangerine Dream's later music. I suppose one almost acceptable way to approach this disc is to view it as a new retrospective meditation, merely based upon ideas from the older works. Even then, though, the whole exercise feels to make about as much sense (and is as sacrilegious) as taking coloured felt-tip pens to beautiful old pencil sketches: it may "update" the medium, but the original message is mostly lost in the process! This first disc is horribly unbalanced, too. Over half of it is given over to just one of the five albums from the associated period ("Green Desert") and oddly-considering that the music from that album is the most in need of being reworked-this all remains pretty much as previously issued. All told, then, this is indeed a strange piece of work. I just hope Edgar Froese managed to achieve some sort of karmic closure from this revisiting of his roots and that he can now get on with new things! The remaining four discs in the set are given over to TD's later, so called, Blue Years - the time during which they were signed to New Age label, Jive-Electro (1983-87). This period is regarded by many as marking the very peak of Tangerine Dream's creativity. The albums included in this period are the studio albums "Le Parc", "Tyger" and "Underwater Sunlight", plus the live sets "Poland" and "Livemiles". All five of these are represented to some degree or other in the central 3 CDs of the set. The booklet notes suggest that the tracks included here are also studio reworkings of the originals but most sound (to me at least) like live concert versions of the originals. Sometimes, they are more or less identical to their earlier releases but mostly, the instrumentation may be subtly different, or the tempo a little altered, or else the music may feature some other slight re-arrangement. All of this music remains faithful to the original, though, and I don't believe anyone who knows any of the previous releases will be at all dissatisfied with the treatment they receive here. Indeed, many of the tracks are considerable improvements on the originals-quite an achievement, in some cases. The least reworked material comes from "Le Parc", with seven of the original nine tracks being included almost unaltered (`Tiergarten' is a little shorter; `Zen Garden' a touch longer). "Tyger" is represented almost in its entirety too, although generally in much richer form than on the original release. We are also treated to two versions of `London': one is entirely instrumental, while the other features a longer reworking, preserving Jocelyn Bernadette Smith's original vocal part (complete with her horrendous mispronunciation of `Thames'!) Both of these are a treat to have and point up just how good the much-undervalued "Tyger" really is. The remaining three albums are represented to a lesser degree than the two just mentioned. About half of the music from "Underwater Sunlight" and "Livemiles" is here, little altered from the original, together with just over 30 of the original 80 minutes of the double album "Poland". Again, these all sound like recordings of the same material presented at different concerts from those of the original releases. Collectors may find the differences interesting and will possibly not begrudge buying these duplicates of works already in their collection. (After all, the bootleg market has been cashing in on this attitude for years!) I should add, by the way, that the extracts from these five albums are mixed freely CDs 2, 3 and 4 of this set. This arrangement works better than one might expect-testimony indeed to the uniform brilliance of Tangerine Dream's work at this time. The final disc in this set presents some 45 minutes of previously unreleased Tangerine Dream music from the Blue Years period. `Valley of the sun' is the longest track on this disc: a 15-minute meditation of the string-wash-and-sequencer-pulse variety. `Beach bay bunker' (9:36) is another classic TD orchestral-type ballad, strongly suggestive (to my ears at any rate) of much of Christoph Franke's later TV music. The similar length `Vanishing Blue' starts out as a gentle synthesiser meditation but slowly builds into something more substantial, with a powerful percussion line and sweet synthesiser tune, before winding down again to a peaceful conclusion. The closing `Red morpho' (another substantial track of 11:34 duration) is a drum-machine, stringy guitar and singing organ number, typical of much of the music contained on the other discs. I don't think that any of this material is as strong as the rest of the music presented in the set (ignoring CD1, of course!) but it is all certainly worth having. Collectors will insist upon it, of course! An interesting little booklet with lots of archive photographs of the band and an essay by TD expert, Mark Prendergast, is included in the set too. In summary then, this collection is excellent value for anyone already considering buying copies of both "Tyger" and "Le Parc" (and "Green Desert", if there be any such strange souls) or with an interest in complete collections or rarer Tangerine Dream releases. It also provides a satisfying sample of music from three other albums (although there is so much great music missing from both "Poland" and "Livemiles" that the real enthusiasts will still need to buy separate copies of these, at the very least). My only reservation concering these CDs is that more could have been squeezed onto them. (The total playing time is 4 hours 24 mins.) Or am I just being greedy? I doubt, too, whether CD1 will ever make it into my play-tray again, but that's just me. I suggest you try it: you may like it!"
Excellent overview to a moody Tangerine Dream
Steve Benner | 04/21/1999
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This is a beatiful journey with Tangerine Dream through one of their more creative periods. Box omits any of the records TD made with Virgin Records, thus giving a rare and amazing look at "other side of Tangents". Disk 1 covers The Pink Years (69/73). Disks 2-4 cover The Blue Years (83/87). Disk 5 consists of 4 completely new songs. All recordings are remixes from original compositions. Most are shortened. But this this not necessary a bad sign. Remix (made by Edgar Froeze himself) provides united background to unfold songs from very different periods, thus giving listener more consistent view of the band.If you want to start your TD collection and not sure whether you'll like them enough to justify more then one-two CDs, buy one of their original albums (Rubycon and Sorcerer come to mind) and decide then. But if you are already sold on TD and their moody electronic music, this set is a must. Enjoy,P.S. Total 44 songs, 4 hours 25 minutes long."