Tangerine Dream - Atem (expanded) 2 x CDs

SKU 23-EreaCD 21019
First off, I have to say that I love those three early, pre-Virgin, post-Electronic Meditation albums. They are wonderful, electro-acoustic soundscape albums, done before the technology existed for sequencing, which showed up on their fifth album, when they signed to Virgin. This was their fourth and last for Brain and this newly remastered release includes a previously unreleased live performance from 11/29/73 in Berlin in excellent sound (for the time period). Highly recommended.

"Atem was Tangerine Dream's fourth album, released in 1973. In many ways, it marks the group's furthest departure from the world of rock and pop and the closest they ever came to the sound world of the classical avant garde. The opening title track, 'Atem' (the German word for 'breath') clearly builds upon earlier TD material, like 'Alpha Centauri' and 'Zeit', being similar both in scale-it is over 20 minutes long-and style. In many ways, it is an updating of "Electronic Meditation", with Chris Franke's tom-tom drumming providing the main impetus over mostly organ and synth sounds in its early parts, and for its almost organic overtones. 'Atem' is a beautifully structured work and has an exquisite central section, with a quiet heartbeat pattern played on tom toms, over an eerie mellotron loop and some beautifully textured patterns of white noise and, later, throbbing VCS3 sounds. The next track, 'Fauni-Gena' is another largish work (almost 11 mins) which continues in a similar vein. The sound world here is suggestive of the primitive rainforest, with, once more, a haunting mellotron loop over the sounds of exotic birds and other creatures (whether real or synthesised is never obvious) carrying the listener's imagination off to far away times and places. 'Circulation of Events' is another typical early TD meditative piece, featuring sustained organ and synthesiser notes over a rising VCS3 pulse. The final track, 'Wahn' (another German title: this one means 'delusion'-in the sense of that which gives rise to insanity!) is unique in the Tangerine Dream canon, however, in consisting of little beyond vocal utterings (grunts, mutterings, screams, shouts and so on) echoed and reverbed, until a rising percussion line restores some semblance of decorum and a gentle mellotron theme sings the work to a close. This is a track owing more to Ligeti's 'Aventures' and 'Nouvelles Aventures' and works of that ilk, than to anything from the rock or pop world. Perhaps the closest you can get to this nowadays would be Trevor Wishart's 'Vox cycle'. This CD is a remastered release from original master tapes by TD's own Eastgate studio, so is probably as definitive a release as could be achieved. Its analogue origins remain apparent throughout, however, with tape hiss being quite prevalent, especially through the quieter passages, of which this disc has plenty. This needn't put you off, though, as the material more than makes up for these technical shortcomings, and I'm happy to report that the release is free of any particularly disturbing remastering artefacts."-Steve Benner

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  • LabelReactive
  • UPC5013929711938
Your Price $19.00

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