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The Private Music of Tangerine Dream

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Album Review

Tangerine Dream recorded four works for Peter Baumann's Private Music label between the years 1988 and 1990. The Private Music of Tangerine Dream distills these four works into a single disc, adding two "new" tracks at the end. Listeners who enjoy late-period Tangerine Dream are likely to enjoy this sampler, while earlier fans will no doubt squirm through the saxophone solo on "Long Island Sunset" and the faux fretless bass on "Electric Lion." While these songs represent a different chapter than the band's amorphous sound paintings and sequencer-driven journeys of the '70s, too much is made of their "de-evolution" into new age music. As early as Exit, Tangerine Dream began to streamline their music, incorporating heavier beats and coursing melodies while cutting the track time considerably. The music on Melrose, Lily on the Beach, and Optical Race is the present result of that refinement, a way station along the path that Tangerine Dream set out on years ago. Traces of the band's former masterworks can be found in "Three Bikes in the Sky," "After the Call," and "Dolls in the Shadow" if you listen. Yet, the fact remains that this compilation is best suited to listeners approaching Tangerine Dream from the new age side of the equation rather than musical adventurers looking to do a pulse check on their old friends. Despite some criticism to the contrary, the two unreleased tracks ("Roaring of the Bliss" and the unfortunately named "Beaver Town") are well worth hearing; they hardly shed any new light on the band, but they do provide an electric ending to this sometimes-humid collection.

Customer Reviews

It Is Unfortunate....

...that the supposed Tangerine Dream "purists" seem to disdain the music centered around the "Melrose Period". Even Edgar seems to look down his nose at this period. I believe Optical Race is the best complete work that TD ever did, it is in my top 10 albums of all time, and forget about even finding it on iTunes. I was not an infant in the 70s. I sought out electronic and synth music from Wendy Carlos to Jarre to Laurie Anderson, Steve Hillage, Kraftwerk, etc... The decade containing Exit, Tyger, Lily on the Beach, Optical Race, Melrose, Underwater Sunlight is TD making songs instead of ponderous explorations. This music, along with a few others - most notably Jan Hammer - inspired me to pursue and to love both creating and listening to electronic music. If you like this collection and are too young to have heard all of music from this period then by all means go seek it out.

Whaaaaat ???? You dont have this?

This is a gotta add.... Will become a high play count item. Very restful yet vibrant enough so you don't snooze.


This was my first TD album. i was in college when i bought this and at the time i was myself a musician playing keys. I've alwyas been a fan of the use of synths and to me no one does it better than TD, although major respect goes out to ELP. Mind you, an album like this is likely to draw a lot of criticism from old school fans from the 70s. being as i wasn't around yet during part of the 70s or was an infant, i can only look at it from the point of view of music, and especially technology always evolving. and since the two are intertwined when speaking of synths, an album like this one is almost inevitable. the album uses a LOT of synths popular during the early 90s, just as they used the synths around in the 70s...i mean, you kinda have to. as a musician, especially a synth/keyboard player, you love making music with the newest thing out there and experimenting with it. and that's why i love this album. during the late 80s and early 90s you couldn't get away from hearing the korg m1 synth, and there's plenty of it here along with lots of other cool synth. so to me, it's great. just like Exit was a big deal to folks listennign to it in the early 80s, this one was great for me in the 90s and openned up my eyes to a whole new way of thinking about synths and music.


Formed: 1967 in Berlin, Germany

Genre: Electronic

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Without doubt, the recordings of Tangerine Dream made the greatest impact on the widest variety of instrumental music during the 1980s and '90s, ranging from the most atmospheric new age and space music to the harshest abrasions of electronic dance. Founded in 1967 by Edgar Froese in Berlin, the group progressed through a full three dozen lineups (Froese being the only continuous member with staying power) and four distinct stages of development: the experimentalist minimalism of the late '60s and...
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