JACOBS TANGERINE DREAM BLOG

JACOBS TANGERINE DREAM BLOG

A LET IT ROCK SPECIAL

tour programmesOprettet af Jacob Pertou ons, april 28, 2010 18:13


"We prefer doing special memorable events rather than just a series of concerts. ..."


OCTOBER TOUR 1975

4TH COVENTRY CATHEDRAL (with kind permission of the Cathedral authorities)

5TH BRISTOL COLSTON HALL

7TH NORWICH, ST. ANDREWS HALL

9TH SHEFFIELD CITY HALL

12TH BIRMINGHAM TOWN HALL

13TH OXFORD POLYTECHNIC

14TH AYLESBURY, FRIARS-VALE HALL

16TH LIVERPOOL CATHEDRAL (by invitation of the Dean and Canon Precenter)

17TH GLASGOW CITY HALL

19TH MANCHESTER HARDROCK

20TH YORK MINSTER (with kind permission of the Dean and Chapter)

23RD CROYDON FAIRFIELD HALL

It is emphasised, that with reference to the concerts on 4th, 16th and 20th October, there must be no smoking at any time in the Cathedrals.

Road Crew: Chris Blake, Des Seal, Roland Paulick.

Special thanks to the tour promoters: Darrol Edwards.

Tour Manager and personal assistant to Tangerine Dream: Andrew Graham Stewart, c/o Virgin Records, 2-4 Vernon Yard, 119 Portobello Road, London W11. (Tel: 01-727 8070).

Programme written and produced on behalf of the Rock Writers' Co-operative Society Ltd., 283 Grays Inn Road, London WC1X 8OF (Tel: 01-278 2633).

© The authors and the Rock Writers' Co-operative Society Ltd.

Art Direction: George Snow.

Cover lllustration: Geoff McCloud.

Programme Design: Kevin Sparrow.

Typesetting: Flaschtype, 48a Goodge St., W1.

Printed by: Chelsea Printing Services, 186 Campden Hill Road, W8.



TANGERINE DREAM IN CONCERT, OCTOBER 1975

The concerts are Tangerine Dream's first in Britain, since their very successful tour in November 1974 - except for the group's sellout appearance at the Royal Albert Hall in April.

One unique feature of the tour is the concerts in the cathedrals. Tangerine Dream have already played in major European cathedrals - in Rheims last December and in Munich in April. Asked why Tangerine Dream had planned the cathedral dates, leader Edgar Froese said: “The most important reason is that we prefer doing special memorable events rather than a series of concerts. Cathedrals have incredible accoustic possibilities, particularly because most of them were built when amplification did not exist. In no way are we attempting to create religious events, however, in these buildings the atmosphere is more condusive to concentration than elsewhere - and our music demands concentration. The intrinsic beauty of cathedrals goes without saying, and it is sad these buildings are under utilised.” Tangerine Dream consider it something of an honour to be given permission to perform in cathedrals. Representatives of the group have been liaising closely with the cathedral authorities, and will continue to do so.

The concerts outside the cathedrals will likewise be special events. Where space allows, the group will employ a contemporary dancer, who will improvise to the music. The amazing potential of blending Tangerine Dream's music with contemporary dancing was proved last November, when the Baf let Rambert used "Phaedra" for a performance on BBC 2's Second House.

Tangerine Dream will be bringing over a wealth of new equipment, far more than they employed at the recent Albert Hall concert. As usual, full quadraphonic sound will be used whenever the facilities of the halls allow.

Tangerine Dream are generally considered to be at their best in a concert setting: as Steve Lake of Melody Maker has commented - "Live, the sophistication of their approach invariably convinces,"

Immediately following their U.K. tour, Tangerine Dream leave for Los Angeles where they will see William Friedkin (Director of 'The French Connection' and 'The Exorcist') and discuss the recording of the soundtrack for his next film. Concert dates in the States are then planned, followed by visits to Japan and Australia.


The instrumentation of Tangerine Dream is:-

Edgar Froese:

Mellotron 400, Mellotron Mark 5 (new model with double tape set and double keyboard), Farfisa 400 double keyboard organ, Farfisa electric piano, VCS3 synthesizer with EMS sequenzer and EMS keyboard, Moog sequenzer.

Peter Baumann: Farfisa double keyboard organ (first model) Farfisa organ (professional model, Fender Rhodes electric piano, Mellotron 400, Elka electric string organ, two AKS synthesizers with touch keyboards (EMS), ARP synthesizer 2600 with keyboard, Moog sequenzer.

Christoph Franke:

Modified AKS synthesizer (EMS), Elka electronic string organ, two Moog 300 P synthesizers (big models with two 4-Moog synthesizers (modified), ARP 3600, Farfisa organ Professional model, Mellotron 400, special-built computer-operated rhythm controller.



"Tell me, my fine fellow, where can I purchase PHAEDRA and RUBYCON two fine albums by...."

"You don't have to tell me who they're by!"

"I don't?"

"Affirmative!"

"Who are they by?"

"You don't know?"

"Of course I know!"

"Fine! Just fine! But do you know where you can buy them?"

"Negative!"

"You can buy them anywhere!"

"Anywhere?"

"Anywhere! Have you heard of Edgar Froese?"

"Edgar Froese?"

"Affirmative!"

"Affirmative!"

"Do you know where I might buy Edgar Froese's two magnificent waxings....?"

"You don't have to tell me what they're called!"

”I don't?"

"AQUA and EPSILON lN MALAYSIAN PALE! And I'll tell you more!"

'oh?"

"You can buy them anywhere."

"Anywhere?"

"Affirmative!"

"Hey, I feel a song coming on!"

"Yeah?"

"So l'll just set this synthesiser on'mush'and ....Hey Presto! The Sound of Music!"

"MMMMM! Now that's what I call real pretty!"


TANGERINE DREAM. PHAEDRA and RUBYCON.

EDGAR FROESE. AQUA and EPSILON IN MALAYSIAN PALE.


You can buy them anywhere for £2.99.

But take this page to any Virgin shop and you can buy them for £2.39.

This offer closes at the end of November.

Virgin Records. We have never sold a full price Tangerine Dream or Edgar Froese album.



THE ECSTASY WITHOUT THE AGONY

Tangerine Dream under the microscope. Karl Dallas discusses their contribution to modern music.

Prologue

The vibration of the wire over the pick-up createsa changing electrical potential according to the length of the wire and the speed of its vibration.This potential is carried along conductors to a complex assemblage of semi-conductors, potentiometers and other electronic circuitry, whence it is conducted to a transducer, from which is emitted a sound, the frequency of which is directly related to the speed and length of the vibrating string - which may be varied at will.

It is possible, by the use of variable filters, to so modify the sound that almost vocal impressions may be aroused in the hearer: the crying of a baby, for instance, or the wailing of a banshee. If it is connected with a revolving tape loop, the person who lengthens or shortens the wire and causes it to vibrate, may have what he has just played repeated so that he is, in effect, playing with himself. He may therefore, within limits laid down by the intrinsic noise generated by the control, usually foot-operated, he may cut off the 'attack' at the beginning of a sound as he strikes the wire, so that the characteristic nature of this particular sound source is disguised by changing the apparent 'envelope' of the sound.

Is this a description of a new and particularly inaccessible piece of multi-million dollar electronic equipment?

No, it's called an electric guitar.

Or try this.

Air is blown through a column across which are stretched cords of elasticated material which, like the wire ('string') of the guitar, sound 'high' or 'low' according to whether they are tightened or slackened. The resultant sound is fed into an acoustic filter of a virtually infinitely variable shape, so that the fibrating column of air may be directed against hard or soft surfaces, flat, rounded, or polymorphous. The resulting filtered sounds may be used to induce pleasure or to communicate information.

Easy, isn't it. The answer is the human voice. The point is that the human voice, and even the circuitry that has grown up around the electric guitar since T-Bone Walker first electrified the blues, are regarded as simple because they are familiar. Conversely, the electronic hardware of synthesizers upon which a band like Tangerine Dream play is regarded as complicated because it is unfamiliar.

And yet all of it, from the simplest to the most complex - and who is to say which is the more complex, the small human brain or the electronic computer which stores a fraction of the information in several times the space? - is designed to produce a sound, and it is the sound we should be considering, not the hardware that produces it.

1. They've just deleted Karlheinz Stockhausen's Greatest Hits

At the beginning of Jonathan Cott's book, "Stockhausen - Conversations with the composer", the subject quotes a conversation he had with Suzuki, the Japanese zen philosopher, about what is natural and what is artificial, and he records the zenman's rejection of the distinction he was trying to make between older, 'natural' music and this modern 'artificial' stuff with tape recorders and gadgets. "You see," says Stockhausen, "he took artificial to be something that is more than merely artful. If something conflicts with our natural feelings and prevents our being at one with ourselves, only then would that be artificial. So a machine, a computer, is a quite natural extension of the brain. It's like producing a baby." As we all know from our biology and physics lessons, everything comes down to electricity in the end. It was interesting to see that Wilhelm Reich, in his "The Function of the Orgasm", uses a diagram to illustrate what he called the sex-economy energy process, an equilateral triangle with the left hand side an arrow pointing to the apex, marked "tension" and the right-hand side an arrow coming down to the corner of the base, marked "relaxation", and that in a book by Daphne Oram, first director of the BBC's radiophonic workshop, she used a similar diagram to illustrate the similarity between the electrical discharge from a capacitor, the creation of a musical note, and a musical work of art.

"The time taken for a capacitor to discharge its tension may be a fraction of a second, for a trumpet to play its crochet, a fraction of an hour," she wrote. "As phenomena they strike me as being surprisingly alike. Each one an interplay of potential, resistance and time resulting in the release of power. Each is achieving its effect on the outside world by disciplining the potential, by creating varying resistance so that the power is modulated in perceptible, finite time."

And in describing the pattern of the first side of “Phaedra”, Christoph Franke of Tangerine Dream used a similar analogy, which could in itself be symbolised by the shape displayed on an oscilloscope by a so-called square-wave tone. Indeed, the word "ramp" he uses, comes from waveform terminology: "The envelope of the whole piece is that you have a very slow ramp, having sound coming from nowhere, at first very abstract and amorphous and then slowly picking up melodies and rhythms, getting stronger to a climax, there is a very quick stop at the end of the ramp and then it goes very slowly up to the end, coming from very noisy sounds, from very abstract sound to a very harmonic sound."

There is a problem of terminology, of notation. In an age when we are coming to the end of musical (and all?) literacy, when each modern composer creates his own private language to demonstrate what he is up to, we have to resort to visual images to describe what we mean. Notes are described as getting 'higher and lower’, when what we mean is that they vibrate faster or slower. Electronic sounds are described as ,white noise, (the sort of random sounds you get if you tune an FM radio off the station without operating the squelch or mute button) and 'pink noise', which means that some of the frequencies have been filtered out to 'colour' the sound. What this actually is is the end of the visual symbolism which has dominated music (eg harmony is the creation of clusters of notes observed to be in a vertical relationship on a printed stave) since it became separated out into an art form.

And it is the attempt to elevate electronic music above other more popular forms which makes the innovations of Stockhausen and his associates less relevant to the needs of today than the playing of any rock guitarist. Cornelius Cardew, an old associate, has taken up a Maoist position on Stockhausen's work which relates his mysticism (a charge which was once made by Marxists against Einstein) to support for imperialism, but it is really the stance of the classical composer which makes his music anti-popular, not the medium within which he works.

Electronic music can only work if it becomes a popular form, which means that it needs to fit into a rock context, to my mind.


2. I Like It Because I Can't Understand It

Few new bands have received such a bad press as Tangerine Dream when they began to be heard in Britain. Steve Lake, apotheosis of the avant garde. wrote them off as Muzak. The same critics who had saved their most vitriolic epithets till then for slagging off Mike Oldfield turned on the Dreamers with the same adjectival aggro: somnolence, cures for insomnia, amorphousness, perm any one of three charges. Up until then, electronic music, in either the popular or classical field, had lived up to Lillian Roxon's description of the United States of America, who in 1967 had been one of the first rock groups in the world to use predominantly synthesized sound: " ... their music was too contrived, too mechanical, too cerebral." A sort of negative Stalinist position was adopted by those critics who might have been expected to be most sympathetic to anyone blazing new technological trails: if it was accessible, then it couldn't be much cop. To be fair, this was a justifiable position to adopt. Walter Carlos's brilliant (but musically insignificant) Switched-On Bach had sparked off an incredible range of inferior imitations which lacked his wit and used the massive resources of Robert A. Moog's invention to produce poor mimicry of the sounds of 'real' instruments.

We were approaching a situation where there was a direct ratio between the level of musical boredom and the amount of electronic hardware employed. After all, in Stockhausen's Mikrophonie he had managed with a tam-tam, a mike, and an amplifier to produce his effects. Perhaps we were suffering from technological overkill.

The "difficulty" or otherwise of any piece of music is no gauge of its value, either way; Leadbelly's Lousiana accent was well-night indecipherable to a whole generation of British blues fans, but that didn't stop his music from awakening a kindred spark in their hearts which lay at the root of the entire British blues boom and hence of rock and roll in this country. The musical vocabulary of one genre, even one as simple as rock, may make the music a completely foreign tongue to one raised in a different tradition, where it is the entertainment of babes in arms' And a music whose vocabulary eludes even those who profess to like it may in fact have nothing to communicate.


3. The synthetic and the concrete

There was (and is) another reason why Tangerine Dream's music sometimes sounds excessively bland, on the surface at least, to those who have not bothered to get further into it, and that is the use they make of the Mellotron, which makes them an uneasy hybrid between the two kinds of electronic music, the Parisian and the Kolnisch. Although composers have been experimenting with the mechanical and electronic generation and manipulation of sounds since as early as 1899, when William Duddell produced a musical note by placing a coil and capacitor in parallel with an electric arc, the first real break-through into electronic music as a genre in its own right came from the studios of Radio-Television Francaise in Paris and the musique concrete of Pierre Schaeffer, who used tape recorders, filters etc to modify previously recorded "real" sounds like street noises and even actual musical instruments, resulting in music that could only be performed by running the tape.

Although Stockhausen produced his first electronic etude in the RTF studio, he switched pretty fast to the WDR studio in Cologne where it was believed, in his own words, "one can recognise a first criterion for the quality of an electronic composition by hearing the degree to which it is free from all instrumental or other auditive associations. Such associations divert the listener's comprehension from the self-evidence of the sound-world presented to him because he thinks of bells, organs, birds or faucets ... From this we should conclude that it is best for electronic music just to sound like electronic music, that is, it should as far as possible contain only sounds and sound-connections which are unique and free of association and which make us feel we have never heard of them before" (Die Reihe, 1961).

Of course, like that other enfant terrible of the avant garde, John Cage, Stockhausen didn't always feel himself bound by these rulei, and in fact the whole history of electronic music has been a record of the conflict between the two attitudes. But it has to admit that when Stockhausen allows concrete sounds to intrude into an electronic passage, as with the voice which intones "les leux sont faites" during the fourth region of his otherwise brilliant Hymnen, it destroys the sublimity of what has gone below and reduces it to the banal.

This is what Mellotrons tend to do. The Mellotron is a keyboard instrument which is loaded with tapes playing each of the keyboard's notes: a tape may be of strings or voices or trumpets or what you will, and with his ten fingers the musician can create a ten-piece brass or string section or whatever. For this reason, the Mellotron ran into understandable trouble with the Musicians' Union at a very early stage in its career.

Now though Christoph Franke plays a Moog synthesizer, and the other two members of Tangerine Dream play smaller synthesizers from the British EMS company, if this was all they did they would be reduced to playing single melody lines all the time, since at the present stage of development it is impossible to play chords on a synthesizer keyboard. This is why they rely on organs and electric pianos and the Mellotron to create the full wash of sound against which the single notes of the synthesizers can stand out like pinpoints of crystal.

They use complex arrangements of electronics to modify the resulting sounds electronically, phase shifters to make the sounds appear to move spatially and up and down as well as across the stereo image, filters, and so on. but they are still faced at times with what sound to me like uneasy compromises and I am reduced to imagining what their sound might be like if it were totally synthesized.

This is especially so in the case of the Mellotron, for reasons which I have found it hard to analyse. Perhaps it is the lack of attack at the beginning of the notes, or the fact that some of the commercially available tapes are not really of very high quality musically or electronically (Tangerine Dream are working on recording their own special tapes), but there is something in the Mellotron in the hands of Edgar Froese which brings out all his innate romanticism and almost spills over into sentimentality.

At times, like the noble theme he plays on Mellotron strings on the ludicrously titled 'Mysterious Semblance at the Strand of Nightmares' (perhaps it loses something in the translation from the German) at the beginning of side two of "Phaedra", his lyrical gift triumphs over the shortcomings of the instrument, and the visions conjured up, as Peter Baumann's synthesized wind noise sweeps across the speakers, is epic. And again, at the beginning of his newest solo album, he directs the resources of a vertable symphony orchestra of Mellotron overdubs to produce a stunning effect. And yet, live, they do sometimes lose their way into modal doodles which are cloying rather than sweet, sickly rather than stimulating.

This is one of the penalties of a music that is completely free. While their albums are for the most part performed live, with as few overdubs as possible, they do of course have the opportunity to reject tapes which start promisingly and peter out into meanderings, something which is likely to happen to the most creative free musician, let's be honest.

There is also the melodic fact that unless you are going to strive all the time for the note of anguish that so many associate with avant garde music, which is not Tangerine Dream's aim at all, you do run the risk of playing safe games on the black notes. Any kid who lives in a house with a piano must have produced 'Chinese' or 'Scottish' music on the black notes without any musical knowledge at all. What he is playing is a pentatonic gapped scale, which used to be regarded as discordant but now, thanks to the work of Debussy and Ravel, is merely attractively exotic.

What is fun in the front parlour (if he doesn't keep it up for too long) can be a sweeter kind of hell in the concert hall, and while Tangerine Dream's creativity is of a higher order than that, it's got to be admitted that while they wait for inspiration to come, or to return, their playing does lack bite.

It is this uncertainty as to whether they are going to pull it off - and they usually do – that makes each Dream concert an exciting experience in its own right. But it is risky.



4. The personalities of an impersonal group

So far, Tangerine Dream have usually played in semi-darkness. Not, I assure you, to create any mystical aura about them, but because they wanted to focus attention upon the collective sound of the music as a whole, rather than what any one member was playing.

They are beginning to recognise, however, that though to have the lights go DOWN rather than up when a band comes on stage must have been a refreshing change when they first began playing, it has now become a restrictive image, and they are actively seeking ways of smashing through the particular wall that it has become between their music and their audience. Impersonality can, after all, become the worst kind of ego trip.

Actually, if it weren't for the semidarkness, the musical personalities of the three members might be more easily recognisable and, in my personal opinion, their music much less mysterious to their fans who enjoy what they do without quite knowing what is going on.

Edgar Froese, as I've said, is the great romantic of the group. A big, slow-speaking man with sandy hair, married to the lady who has designed most of the band's record sleeves, he plays the Mellotron. He tends to be the spokesman for the band, though on technical matters he defers happily to Christoph Franke.

Franke is the man who sits in the middle, in front of the space terminal bank of the Moog. An ex-drummer whose rhythmic base shows in the way he uses the Moog's sequencers to lay down complex polyrhythms for the rest to improvise upon. When Peter Baumann left the group briefly earlier this year to be replaced by Michael Hoenig, the new man's rhythmic interests produced some of the funkiest music I have heard the band play, but possibly tended to over-balance the band at the expense of melody. For whatever reason, he left and Baumann returned.

Peter is the only member of the band who started on keyboards, and it does tend to show in his playing. He is also very much into the electronic modification of natural sounds and utilises the whole vocabulary of electronic yelps and twitters and hows which the VCS3 synthesizer puts at his disposal.

Of course, all three play several instruments, and the electronic hardware they deploy to modify their sound is the equivalent of several more, but this may give some sort of starting point to who is playing what.

What needs to be stressed, however, as well as the individual musical personalities of its three members, is the collective identity of Tangerine Dream as a BAND, inter-acting and intercommunicating on stage and in the studio. Edgar Froese's analogy of their music with a good conversation is a true one, for each of the other two will respond to what the others is doing - and, in the process, react again upon the first musician.

In so doing, they build up a musical empathy which is, perhaps, the most remarkable thing about them.

Ever since Louis Armstrong invented the cornet solo, and led jazz away from the strict traditional confines of New Orleans, musicians have been striving for absolute freedom, often discovering merely a new kind of tyranny, the abhorrence of concordant sounds, even as an accident, the neglect of the underlying pulse which is at the base of all music, stemming from the heart-beat and the labour process.

Freedom is seen as an ego-expanding situation, which must necessarily be at the expense of the rest: collective responsibility is disregarded in the sacred name of doing your own thing, so the soloist becomes absolute dictator, if only for the extent of his solo, and the other musicians his subjects, bound to do his bidding.

This extreme individualism, which has its roots in the 19th century romanticism of Byron and Tchaikovsky, which itself was the expression of an age when individualistic entrepreneurs were opening up the world for exploitation, will not be found in the freedom of the playing of Tangerine Dream. They work together, not against each other.

I was interested to find that, to the Dreamers, the supreme test of their empathy is when they come to the end of a piece spontaneously, without any overt message between them,

"We are now at the point," says Froese, "that we can find the end of a piece without connection between us. It sometimes surprises us too that we come to the end after 40 or 50 minutes and we all begin to feel it must end, so we are going down and then we stop without any signals from one to the other."

Lovers of Indian music will not unfamiliar with this situation, having seen the look of joy that will pass between a master sitarist like Ravi Shankar and his tabla-player as they finish a piece precisely on the same beat. As in so many things, the true avant gardists are reinventing the past.

It was this sense of timelessness, of a connection, through electronics, with a period when music was literally closer to the heart of every man, and everything he did was a kind of sacrament, ,that led Keith Michell to use Tangerine Dream to record background music for his Chichester production of Oedipus Tyrannus. And though the collaboration was a failure, this probably tells us more about the irrelevance of proscenium theatre, even when self-consciously brought out into the auditorium, to the cultural needs of the present day,

Tangerine Dream have not yet reached the pinnacle of the peak they have been attempting to scale since 1965, and it may be that, without some fundamental changes in attitudes within the music industry, the ultimate Everest is inaccessible for everyone. Because they are developing a new musical vocabulary, it sometimes becomes difficult to indicate verbally their more successful excursions, compared with times when they just spend time seeking for a direction.

They, themselves, are highly critical of their earlier work, not merely their formative recordings for Ohr of Germany which are so untypical of what they are playing now that they have tried to stop their distribution in the rest of the world, but even parts of their much more significant later British recordings.

But I feel that in their attempt to find a new way of making music that is accessible to every man and woman prepared to surrender to the flow of the music, they are probably showing us that there is nothing unusual, nothing artificial, certainly nothing impersonal in electricity.

After all, that's what holds us all together.


Coda

"Music is the electric soil in which the spirit lives, thinks and invents." Ludwig van Beethoven said that.




LIGHT ON A DARK GROUP – Talking to Tangerine Dream

The Beginnings

Peter Baumann: In the shops where they played their records they had to renew the ceiling because it dropped down. This is when we heard the first time of Tangerine Dream. It wasn't just the volume...

Edgar Froese: It was a free rock form with normal instruments - drums, bass, guitar, flute and violin. In some of our earliest experiments we had arranged songs by the Doors and people like this and so when the group started in 1968 there were a lot of aggressive points inside it. It was not the kind of musical discussion like we have it now. It was another feel.

I started on guitar with the group, but I stopped because I found I was getting so much of my inspiration from the old ways, aggressive things, power things. Until then, we had known only one thing and that was the loudness. Then it was too loud, nobody could listen to the drums, the drummer couldn't listen to the guitar, things like that.

After a couple of years, it's over. You can't find out the very different things. The little things, the little sounds are whispering you know. Christoph sold his drums and we all sold our normal instruments. We were quitting the business, it was all dead. We had been a rock group and we had a good background for that but we couldn’t listen to it.

Christoph Franke: We went through a long period of experiment. We used other instruments, special guitars and so on, to try for other feelings. I tried to change the style of my drumming from beat drumming to other colours and structures. But it was very hard, because instruments have clearly defined borders, which you cannot cross. I tried other drums, not only European drums, and then I tried to make myself electric drums with special mikes.

Then I got rid of my drums and got a synthesizer which was a better way, because there are far more possibilities. On a synthesizer are very many instruments and each of us can choose the instruments he likes.

Peter: I was playing organ in another group, and I was always looking for something that I had never done before. I just wanted to play and keeping playing and I did that for two years without finding it. Then suddenly I heard a glass smash in a kitchen and I sensed the electricity in the moment when the glass fell down. When the glass fell in 2001, it was a bit like this.

I realised there were different ways of expressing yourself, and all that day I really started trying all sorts of different sounds, twanging the blade of a knife on the edge of the table, to find something to express what I wanted. Then, later, we found that the best way to find those sounds was electronically.

Edgar: The biggest shock I ever got as a guitarist was to listen to Jimi Hendrix. I saw what could be done with the guitar. On the other hand, I wasn't a very good guitarist. I was not a bad one but I was not really a good one. I put it through a fuzz box, put other things between the instrument and the amplifier, then I put it into a synthesizer to change the sound. But we were still trying to transform the music and so I changed back to keyboards, which l'd played for about four years, ten or 12 years before.

I wasn't actually very, very interested four or five years ago in pure technical things. So I had to teach myself very hard, because I hadn't very much sympathy for that field. But after a couple of years, it's very open for me now. I think everyone could learn it.

Peter: We started at a point where nobody was interested in the music we were doing. There was such a small number of people interested that there wasn't a name for it. lt wasn't pop and it wasn't avant garde, we just did it. It grew and the people who liked to listen to it grew too and so it has just grown by itself, with no one giving it a name.

Electronic music

Edgar: Our first idea after we got all the electronics was to find out the sounds that have normally not been heard before. We listened to a lot of electronic stuff on record and it's very well known to a lot of people. If they went to an electronic concert they would know maybe 80 or 90 per cent of the sounds. But the problem for us is that we've tried to go further, to find out sounds that are very unknown. We are now at the point where there a lot of possibilities to mix all the things we have, but to find out really new sounds, we can't do that at the moment.

Christoph: Specially in America, there is a special image for synthesizer groups. There are a lot of such groups but they make very different music from us. We like to make our image with our music, not with our instruments. If we use, next time, other instruments, maybe computers or wood instruments, then we are not a wood instrument group or computer group, We like to make our names only for music.

Peter: Why does somebody learn to play bass? Why doesn't he choose a guitar? Why does somebody learn to play organ and not Celtic harp? I mean, it's personal feeling towards instruments and there are some people who take a saw on the stage and saw a table apart and that's part of their musical expression. And there are others who take a glass and throw that against the wall.

We've found that we use those instruments as personal expression. They suit us best.

Edgar: ... we try to find the togetherness of all possibilities of sounds. There's a normal way of producing music, you can listen to the special sound: it's a guitar, or it's drums. You have so much association to all things you've heard before, that what's behind, it's impossible to listen to. So we've tried to change all that. We play the guitar, not like a guitar. We play an organ not like an organ. We change the instruments to change the experience of listening.

Peter: We have tried to f ind the sounds we want by conventional means. But we found in the end that the most direct method to get the sounds we wanted was electronically. And so if the audience finds it simpler to think about the electronics, then we won't mind. But the real point is to find exactly the right sound for the mood we are trying to create.

Edgar: Electronic music isn't our theme, it's a little help of ours. We can find every tone, much more for instance than a flute or guitar. You know, you hear it's a guitar. You hear the guitar lines. We shook it free of that.

Peter: I think you shouldn't talk too much about electronic music because it sounds like lots of patterns, just sitting there, and some kind of mathematic. We just use electronics to do what we want to.

There is a relationship between every kind of music because music exists from certain factors - tempo, dynamic, height of the tones. This is basically what music is and there is a relationship between every kind of music. But if you ask if there is a special emotion or a special touch to our music, I don't think we consider our music as any new kind of rock music. We don't consider it at all. I think maybe there's no need.

Edgar: We like to be thought of as a group working out good ideas, new ways of music and possibilities for the future, but we are definitely not a "synthesizer group". We like to integrate all sorts of music, but I think a lot of readers of the papers may begin to think of us as just human potentiometers. We are still musicians.



The musical conversation

Edgar: On one hand we are always talking about the togetherness, how we must play together, we must do our things together, we must feel together the same things at the same time, and on the other hand we are very different persons, we have really different thoughts about music. And maybe it's that point why we have come together on stage with our music, that each member of the group can give from their different backgrounds. Maybe one member of the group sitting down won't get any ideas about the things he wants to do now. Then he gets a message from left or right. And then the talk between us stops because one will give a question to another and someone gives an answer. It is just like conversation.

But what you can't do when you are talking is for one man to say the same thing as another, only louder. He has to wait for a space and then when he has spoken he has to fade out his voice so that the others can give their comments. It's the same in music.

Peter: It's silly to say that we play at every concert something that we haven't played before. We can't do every day two hours of completely new music. Of course, we could play for ten hours just demonstrating what we've got on our instruments. This is no problem and you won't hear us repeat anything for ten hours. But this is not the togetherness of the music which happens if it is a good concert.

Edgar: Some of the spirit on the first one or two albums, perhaps, may have been mine. And even today in the recording studio, perhaps, where you can stop the tape or emphasise one thing at the expense of another and make overdubbing, but on stage it is impossible for us to have a leader.

If I were the leader I would have to give signs about what's happening now or to play louder now or what should be done on the instruments but it's not possible. Each member of the group has to respect the others. Another way is not possible.

Peter: We are different persons, of course, and we have different backgrounds, so we play differently on the same instruments. He uses the same synthesizer as I do, but he will never play the same as I do, nor will I play the same as he does.

Everyone looks at the instrument in a different way. So you can't possibly say that Christoph is playing Moog, that's why he's making the most synthetic sound and Edgar is playing Mellotron, so he's doing the most classical sound. It's very hard to define by the instruments.

Edgar: Our way of playing music is the togetherness of all the people in it, and it's not only the way of playing, of working with an instrument, but the feeling behind the instrument.

Peter: It's all improvisation, but since we know each other there's some kind of harmony between us that you cannot explain. We have some basic feelings and emotions that will appear all the time, but there are special ways, special scenes, it depends very much upon the scenery where we're playing, they influence the music so that every concert is different.

The tendency of the music of course is the same, but we never have two concerts the same.

Edgar: I think we know exactly what the other one feels and the way of playing is when one of us starts with a special thing, the other two help him to work it out. And so, when he has done that, another one of us starts to work his thing out, and the other two help him. It's not a thing of solo parts, and to fight it out how I want to be the biggest now. It's not our way.

Of course, in Berlin we are not always together. We meet, one or two times a week, for rehearsal or for talking about it, and so we don't see each other in the meantime. Each person has his own way, his own thing, his own private atmosphere. So when you start to play again each person can bring in new feelings, new experiences.

If we sat around each night and talking and talking and talking, it will always be the same.

Christoph: Liquid, that's a very important word for our music, each part flowing from one point to another, very smooth, very liquid. You don't have very big cuts or breaks. It's like water.

Sometimes there's a waterfall, maybe, but nostop.

Edgar: On the Mellotron I have about ten sets of tapes, each with three different possibilities. There is one tape with a lot of different noises, you know from steps on the floor or bells ringing or drums, traffic noises, all sorts of strange sounds. What we want to do now is to record our own tapes.

You can also use the Mellotron with something like a wah-wah pedal or a fuzz box. I did it one time, but I wasn't very satisfied with it. The only thing I did is to change the sound with a phase shifter or put the Mellotron into the synthesizer. By that I could filter the sound or have a special attack on a single key or I could change the wave form a bit, things like that.

Peter: Hearing music at any time will never be the same as any other time because the situation is very important and the time you hear the music is very important. Every time you're going to hear different aspects and you wander around in the music. The music is there somewhere in the room and you walk and look at the music and feel the music and see different aspects.

Edgar: The time, it's moving, and so for the music, for the feeling, it's the same. In one moment like this, we are just sitting around, but this situation will never be again. It's only in this time, only in this connection. It's the same with a concert, it's a situation of maybe eight o'clock in the evening and only then. It will never be again.



Communication from the darkened stage

Edgar: We like to go on stage in a dark situation, without any lights and things like that. Going on stage and sitting behind the instruments and starting to play and then going off again, and not saying anything, you know, that's the image that we have. But now I think it's not enough and I don't know how we could work it out, but I think we must do some other things to get a better communication.

Peter: When we first went on stage in darkness it was such a new situation for the audience that they really got into what we mean. But now, maybe it's become, "Oh yeah, Tangerine Dream, they play in the dark." They know when they go there what to expect. I's much too predictable'

Edgar: The audience at the Royal Albert Hall was really marvellous. It doesn't matter if the audience is a bit noisy because we start mostly with synthetic sounds from the synthesizer so we can always integrate what they are doing. After a couple of minutes they come down, they will be very quiet.

At the start of our second piece we used a tape loop from the Rainbow concert of people handclapping and whistling. We tried to show the people that they are a part of the music and there is a feedback from them to us.

Christoph: Sometimes I get very angry if we finish a piece and one second later a big noise is in the audience. Maybe we could find out a system to keep the audience to one minute's silence. Maybe with a very low tone, and the people understand "Wait a minute", to keep that impression of that piece.

Edgar: What we had at the Albert Hall was what you could call a satisfied situation where the audience was saying, you know. "Come on again, play again, we want more". So, I ask myself why is it that they want more? 'Cause it's not a rock concert, you know, and we really want to know why they want more. We can't ask them, we can't go with a tape recorder and a mike to everybody and ask them what they felt. That's not possible, so we have to test them with another form of communication.

We've thought that the first step could be to change the whole environment of a concert. OK, that was the first step, and it was working about thirty to forty per cent. But now we have to think about a new form of communication.

Peter: Maybe we won't play together on the stage any more. Maybe one on the stage and one in this corner and one in that corner. I'm just suggesting, maybe something where we can get to the point of what Tangerine Dream is about, again to the people. When we started to do music it was a smaller audience. When we started having bigger audiences, we realised that the bigger the audience, the more the distance was to the audience. Now we try to get back to the audience, very, very close together,

Edgar: Everybody who wants to be creative, who wants to put out a lot of things from himself, he tries to find his special way to explain it, first to himself, what he wants. Because only to think about it is not enough. I must work it out and see what happens, and then I have the possibility to have feedback.

The future lies ahead

Edgar: I believe that the next time we have a concert in England it will be a completely new experience, because to repeat old things is one part we don't like.

Christoph: Maybe we find out some new systems for rehearsal, especially to rehearse our personal interaction. Then maybe that will mean we have to play with the lights on to see everything we do, so that our music is maybe just a thing for the ears.

Edgar: I want to work more on the way to change sounds. You know, it can be boring for me to play one and a half hours of only Mellotron and organ, so I have to learn a lot of things about how to change sounds, especially on the Mellotron, to work out new technical possibilities with the Mellotron. It's one of my main instruments ...

Christoph: I'm working with traditional instruments like the harpsichord for my solo album. Then a new thing, an instrument called a speech synthesizer which can produce vocals and consonants in a way that you can synthesize your own speech. I'm not interested to make sentences in a semantic way. I want to use speech only as an instrument. On my next album I have a rhythm programmer because I use pulses from one sequencer to another at the same time, so that I have several different rhythms in it. I can programme it up to maybe fifty bars but I can make it return when I want, maybe after one bar, after three, or after fifty bars. I can make a notation for it and then I play it from the notation, with pins and notes and switches, how many notes. For example, I have a scale, C, D. E, and so on, and I take C, D and another C and in the next bar I switch off the second C and take A on it, and in this way I can get together any melodic line I want.

Edgar: The main change for the future will be that we have to work much, much harder. With the group it means working harder on a new project and working much harder for ourselves. I don't know if it happens all the time in other groups, but I think that success could make you very lazy.

When you've used two hands for half a year, then after a couple of success situations you are only using one hand and maybe one year later you would be using only two fingers. You know what I mean? And so we found out that we must work harder than we did in the past.

Peter: We weren't lazy two years ago. It was just a part of the music. We are not the group to go into a rehearsal and start to do some sounds and tunes. What we did and intended to do was to go on stage and play what we felt.

You know, if you have done that for 3%, no four years, up to now, then it starts to get a little dishonest because you know each other very much and you get in that way, lazy, because you repeat what you know. It sounds quite good, and the people like it because they have heard it not so often. But you lose the feeling of the tension that you played the first time.

Edgar: We have been working on the new things for the tour that we have to make of America, not that it's an important gig or an important tour, each concert for us is important, whether it's the deepest countryside of England or Germany or France or Carnegie Hall in New York, it's all the same for us, there's no difference.

For us it's a great feeling we need before each concert that we join the stage and really don't know which way we have to go. We only know the three persons, one by one, and that's all we know.

It's really good to have an open field, without any barriers. It's inspiration, just inspiration.

Based on extracts from conversations in London and Berlin between April 1974 and July 1975. Transcript @ Copyright, 1975, Karl Dallas.




DREAMING FOR THE RECORD

An analysis of 'Phaedra' and 'Rubycon' by Karl Dallas, with comments by Christoph Franke.

Tangerine Dream have mixed feelings about recording. On the one hand they feel that the necessity of selecting material which can survive repeated listenings goes against the spontaneity which they feel is so important. But the very fact of selection offers them an opportunity of presenting a distillation of the best that they can do.

They compromise by performing most of their recorded music live, keeping the use of techniques that would only be possible in the studio, such as overdubs, to a bare minimum, though Christoph Franke is already dreaming of using the voltage controlled, computer directed mixing desk at the new Manor Studio as a programmable rhythm machine, its faders rising and falling to a previously predetermined pattern - something that I'll bet Helios didn't have in mind when they designed it.

In the following analyses, the judgements are mine, and the quoted comments are from Christoph Franke, but I would like to acknowledge Christoph's help in sorting out who is playing what.

Phaedra

Side one: Phaedra

In classical Greek literature, Phaedra was a lady who fell in love with her stepson. The story was translated into a French classic by Racine and has recently been rewritten in an Indian colonial setting for the London stage.

No attempt is made on the record to follow the story with any kind of musical programme, though Edgar Froese once told me that he had the poetic atmosphere of the play very much in mind when they were composing the music.

The very slow beginning is in fact a very rapid sequence of notes from Franke on the Moog'

"It is a very soft, slow, cloudy beginning, starting very outside of the room, made with echo plates, and then it comes into the room a little bit, going drier and drier, and the electric piano from Peter makes some slow counterpoints to it."

As the sequence is slowed down a rhythm-pattern becomes evident and the exact notes are perceptible. Baumann's piano notes and chords become more and more bell-like. As the pitch and speed of the rhythm rises and goes more into echo, Froese enters on voice-tape Mellotron playing very high chords and the rhythm goes into tape delay, doubling the apparent speed of the rhythm as every note is repeated. The rhythmic pattern is taken over by Froese, on guitar' "Over this I made some glass noises with the Moog."

The Moog takes back the rhythm sequence and simplifies it down to three tones, to which Franke adds notes one by one, while Froese plays phased long chords on Mellotron strings-tapes. Franke adds a second rhythm sequence, three times as quick as the main rhythm, while he overdubs a similar sequence on organ. This is the first overdub to be heard so far.

The basic rhythm reasserts itself once again, with washes of phased string chords from the Mellotron, and then a high, crying note from Baumann's flute, jumping octaves, up and down, while the intensity of the Revox echo delay on the sequence is changed constantly, as well as the exact sequence of the notes.

Very low bass chords on the Moog underpin the sequence which changes pitch and rises to a climax, while Baumann's flute notes sail in and out of the mix, together with bottleneck guitar sounds from Froese.

Baumann's synthi has added a percussive pattern of white noise sounds in a similar rhythm to the sequence on the Moog, which rises higher and higher as the colour of Baumann's pattern is altered. The rhythm rises to a climax and Froese comes in again with very high voice-tapes on the Mellotron, while the rhythm hits its highest point and repeats over and over. Froese resolves the climax with final Mellotron chords and a long beat on the tam-tam from Franke.

"That's not a gong, it's a tam-tam like Stockhausen used in 'Kontakte'. It has an unvoiced sound. A gong has a little hill in the middle and that gives it a voice. Then I try to make the same sound like the tam-tam with generators and filters which is lying now under everything. A tam-tam has a decay but I want to hold the sound so I made it on the Moog. And I change the colour of the noise sound with a filter bank, which I can do by pressing a key. Otherwise I would need a whole bank of different natural instruments to produce these sounds."

Baumann's phased piano interiects over these basic gong sounds, and then he produces a new sound on the synthi which Franke describes as "a very spacey sound, like a dog in the desert, which I like very much".

Froese's voice tapes sing out over more Moog gong sounds, changing in pitch as Baumann's dog noises return, followed by his organ and heavy string chords from Froese replace the voice, with electric piano chords. The piece moves to a slow, almost heavy conclusion.



Side Two

"The first piece is mainly a Mellotron piece from Edgar, with some added wind noise from Peter's synthesizer. I don't play anything on that piece. The second piece we made all together and the third piece was made by Peter with very long and different tape delays, played with this little wood flute, a recorder, like the young people are learning at school"

Mysterious Semblance at the Strand of Nightmares

"This first thing from Edgar is a very harmonic piece, starting with wind noise. They are mainly minor chords and I get the impression of going walking into a very empty countryside, in the

dark maybe."

The sound of the Mellotron and the wind noise are both phased, moving their presence about the stereo image. Later this phasing is controlled by a generator which creates a flutter on the Mellotron sound.

After a few Fender Rhodes piano chords from Baumann, the Mellotron rises to its climax and subsides into silence, the wind noise rises in power to be joined by twittering voltagecontrolled oscillator sounds on a VCS3 synthesizer.

Movements of a Visionary

Baumann begins by feeding his voice into a synthesizer, to which high-pitched noises are added, joined after a while by a fast sequence of notes on Franke's Moog. "It is several generators given into a ring modulator which multiples the frequencies and you get anharmonic overtones such as you have in all percussive instruments like a glockenspiel or xylophone or a vibraphone or gongs or drums. It means that the steps from one overtone and the next are not in a proportion like one to two to three to four. If you hit a glass you get anharmonic sound. It is the difference between a violin and a church bell. It sounds here a little like a marimba."

The sequence is echoed by Baumann's synthi and organ, and Froese plays very high notes on Lowry organ. Baumann interjects echoed chords on a Davoli piano. The whole thing seems to carry on much longer than the amount of creativity merits, even though it is actually quite short.

"In fact I don't like this side very much because it's not as well done as it could be. It was our first recording in England and we couldn't take as much time as we liked. The next record was much better because we took more time.

"The thing is that we use the complete studio as an instrument, so it is not possible for us to go into the studio and play only pieces we have rehearsed before. We make the concept and composings there in the studio. For instance, the mixing for us is a real creative thing and the mixing board is an instrument with which you control the dynamics, which are an important part of music.”

Sequent C’

"That is just Peter playing. It's like a fugue made with a very long delay so after maybe 20 seconds he can play a new melody line over the-old line. It goes a little in the Terry Riley way of producing music which I like, in fact, very much. I like this piece very much. I think it's a very beautiful end for this record."


Rubycon

Part I.

The beginning is Baumann on Fender Rhodes piano, "playing very lonely notes", with bell-like Moog tones from Franke, joined by an oboe sound from Froese's Mellotron. All three lines come closer and closer together, but there are quiet spaces between the notes.

"It’s the first time we have put breaks between the notes, but it's very important, so you can get your brain clear for what's coming."

A very high melody line on Franke's Moog comes over the long, slow notes, is joined by tapes of mixed voices on the Mellotron with glissandi from Baumann. The Moog melody returns and Froese changes to strings tapes for a brief section of trumpet-like tune and strings.

"Peter has some very nice voltage-controlled bits with the synthi. Sometimes he comes very near with his glissandi, through the well-tempered melody line. I like it very much if there are two scales of notes together - a well-tempered scale and a not-tempered scale producing, like birds, quarter notes, like Schoenberg.

"This part gives me the impression of a very big river, at the end of the river coming into a big sea, the ocean. It's very liquid."

Wind noise is followed by a cymbal-like tone created by a cluster of 20 or 30 notes very close together and a very low bass, with feelings of fuzz in it. "It's a little meditation tone."

After a rhythm sequence, Froese plays the main theme on the strings followed by a remarkable duet between Baumann's Fender Rhodes and Froese's oboe-tapes, in which they swap phrases and half phrases. The rhythm continues, very ostinato, "a repetitive rhythm like the Negroes make it, very often", Baumann switches to organ and the duet continues.

The rhythm doubles and Franke adds an overdubbed piano tape loop: a backwards tape is joined to a forwards tape so that the sound comes to its attack and then dies away.

The rhythm becomes very complex, with Moog tones and snare-drum sounds, plus overdubbed piano, "prepared" with pieces of wood stuck between the strings to give a more percussive effect. Over this Froese plays chords and Baumann plays a very high melody line on organ.

A change in the rhythm is overlaid by clashing sounds from Baumann's voltage controlled oscillator, played over a very fast-running Leslie speaker and very long echo delay. Froese plays a reprise of the original oboe melody while the decay of the snaredrum sound becomes longer and longer so that the beat disappears. Later Baumann plays grand piano over a Leslie.

"In this piece I think all the melodies, rhythms and all the sounds are much, much more complex and much better than on Phaedra. I think it is a step forward, this record."

The piece ends with a long sitar-like sound created by scraping the strings of a grand piano with a piece of metal, recording it, cutting off the attack at the beginning of the note, and playing it back on multi-track at different speeds, giving several different pitches.

The rhythm becomes simpler and simpler, moving from three to two to one single tone, and the piano loops are faded across to each other, making chords, slowly shifting.



Part II

"The second side is beginning with the sound of contemporary music, a mixture of a gong sound and very complex glissandi sounds made with several synthis, about seven different glissandi, three synchronised on the Moog which is very easy to do, and other made with other generators going up and down at different speeds and between different intervals. So it is like the pile of a carpet, a carpet of glissandi.

"I like this beginning because it is very different from everything we've made before. It is really a piece of timbre music with lines so close together that you cannot separate them."

The glissandi section is followed by Moog sounds recorded on Mellotron tapes and played by Froese. Baumann's Leslie organ goes to a fundamental major C chord which is picked up by a very fast, almost subsonic bass rhythm.

The very percussive rhythm is in fact two sequencers, and Franke is switching from one to the other, changing notes in each sequencer as he changes. "I make accents on several notes by playing the filter which makes the timbre higher."

Over "clouds of chords" on the Mellotron and Leslie organ and synthi and Moog rhythm, Froese overdubs a backwards tape of guitar played with echo.

The rhythm has changed to a deep heartbeat tempo, which fades and then returns at a higher pitch, more prominently, under Baumann's fast, staccato organ. A twittering sound is created by oscillators controlling other oscillators.

"It is frequency modulation, controlling one tone with the wave of another. That's what the birds can do with their voice, changing the tone so quickly that you get a noise sound from it'"

The side moves towards its end with concrete sounds of sea recorded on the South coast of England, played on two tape machines with varying speeds so there is phasing, changing the location of the sound.

"This technique is important for the work t hat Edgar did with the artificial head on his solo album, 'Aqua', because with phasing you can change where the sound comes from, not only from side to side, like ordinary stereo, but also from front to back.

"You have only two channels for hearing, so with stereo you can hear everything. Quadraphonics is only a game. It's not really good, only pseudo-space."

The piece ends with a relaxed sequence for three organs and f lute Mellotron, long, gentle chords with the f lute flying at almost stratospheric level, fading like the flute in Debussy's "Afternoon of a Faun".

"This is music that we would like to perform in churches, all evening, without rhythms. Maybe each one of us is playing in a different place in the church, and the natural reverb makes it a very smooth sound.

"We bought a generator to make power so that we can make that music outside, in total silence, in forests maybe."


Discography

Issued in Germany by Ohr-Musik, Berlin:

Electronic Meditation (1970)

Alpha Centauri (1971) - released in UK as Polydor Super 2383314

Zeit - double album (1972)

Atem (1973) - released in UK as Polydor Super 2383297


Released in UK by Virgin Records

Phaedra (1974) V2010

Aqua - Edgar Froese solo album (1974) V2016

Rubycon (1975) V2025

Epsilon In Malaysian Pale - Edgar Froese solo album (1975) TCV 2040



THE NATIONAL SOUND OF GERMAN ROCK

"Kraut Rock" is a meaningless genre invented by xenophobe critics claim Gerald O'Connell. In fact, Germany is the most important centre of musical experimentation in the seventies. If you have prejudices to shed, prepare to shed them now...

For the past five years or so there has been a gradually increasing awareness of German rock in

Britain and America, but the process has been a slow, and in some rather unfortunate cases, painful one. The generally accepted idea is that German rock is at best brilliant but rather cold and uninvolved, and at worst gloomily derivative of the superior Anglo-American product. Both of these views ignore the most important point of all: German musicians have grown up in a social and cultural environment which is unique, and which has shaped their ideas in such a way as to create a large body of highly original and worthwhile music. What I want to do here is to examine that environment and perhaps establish some of its main connections with the music.

The most startling aspect of the native German scene is the extent to which it is fragmented. There are no established musical centres like London, New York or LA where musicians congregate around recording facilities and large audiences. Any list of major bands reveals an equally long catalogue of place-names with which they have remained in association over their whole life-span. The result has been an almost total absence of cross-fertilisation of styles or any prevailing musical orthodoxy. Bands like Amon Duul II in Munich, Can in Cologne and Tangerine Dream in West Berlin have developed more or less in isolation, and their music has taken a course directed more by the logical development of certain individuals' artistic ideals than anything else. This lack of elitism is a barrier in some ways – nobody is likely to get into a series of German bands because x reminds him of y and so on. However, it does cultivate originality and avoid the mindless bandwagoning endemic to Britain and America: psychedelic rock, country-robk, glam-rock. What's next, Kraut-rock? No chance.

Of course, the other great impetus for this particularly insidious characteristic of rock music is a commercial one - it simply pays well to follow the market leaders. This force too is mostly missing in German rock. Those who copy British or American bands tend to be ignored completely, and nobody of any originality is making enough money to attract a spate of imitators. The mass audiences of German youth are still largely wary of their own culture - the shattering psychological aftermath of World War II in West Germany is still felt in areas like music, where it is considered more wholesome to import Anglo-American developments lock, stock and barrel. A number of members of Amon Duul II have admitted to me that they see little hope of financial success in Germany, no matter what they do. The result is that they have played the music they enjoy and feel to be most valuable, and then attempted to sell it outside Germany.

This situation has also meant an absence of any large-scale live audience for German bands. Consequently they have not been under the kind of pressure to 'entertain' that we take for granted in

Britain and America - nobody has ever had to stop to bother about whether anyone can dance to their music (Germans are too reserved for that sort of thing anyway), and records rather than live appearances are the accepted medium. It is fairly easy to see, therefore, why so many bands seem to be operating on the technological frontiers of rock. The Kraftwerk/Neu/Cluster/Harmonia family of groups - the two members of Neu had been in Kraftwerk previously, and when they splitup, Michael Rother joined the two members of Cluster and the band became known as Harmonia - have consistently created music rooted in electronics and based on machine rhythms, and are a good example of this tendency! In fact, this type of approach often appears to be the sole common thread running through German rock – a fascination for pure sound and its electronic manipulation in music is still an important factor. To see why this should still be the case in Germany, while it has been considered passe elsewhere, it is necessary to go back to the contrasting situations of the late sixties.

West Germany in 1967 saw no 'Summer of Love'. The bland consumer culture created by the post war economic miracle was an absorbing preoccupation in a nation anxious to forget its recent past, and far too many young people were caught up in its delights for such wild notions as 'flower power' and 'alternative lifestyles' to gain much grip on their imagination. The system had its critics, but they were few and isolated. Typically based in universities and art schools, they regarded the majority of rock uncritically imported by their contemporaries with justifiable suspicion: it all looked like more garbage from the capitalist conveyor belt. When, in 1968, Europe was swept by student unrest, these strange little outposts found themselves in the vanguard of a widespread change in attitudes. More significantly, in their midst there appeared a series of musicians determined to carry their political commitment into the musical sphere. This movement was never discredited in the way that the Anglo-American hippie phenomenon was: it even had its successes - the downfall of the de Gaulle government in France was attributed in large part to the initial student disturbances of 1968.


By contrast, in England and America, the forward-looking musical developments of the late sixties have largely been cast aside in favour of a gradually imploding artistic form. We have fled back to the 'roots' of country music and fifties rock in order to find firm ground again, whereas in West Germany there has been a continuing emphasis on futurism, and the political dimension has been transformed into a parallel commitment to artistic ideals based more on imagination and criticism than security and appeasement.

Without lapsing into naive polemicism, bands like Faust, Can and Tangerine Dream have shown that there are still largely unchartered areas of experimentation beyond the frontiers of rock accepted outside Germany. Each of these bands had its origins in the late sixties, and this is still true of the most interesting German bands.

As I have already pointed out, all of this has taken place against the background of a fairly hostile environment in the commercial sense. The two German record labels who have released the majority of worthwhile rock in Germany (Brain-Metronome, and Rolf Kaiser's now greatly depleted Ohr Musik) have never had their catalogues released abroad. One or two bands and musicians have signed deals with British or American companies, but these are definite exceptions. There have been records by Jane, Ash Ra Tempel, Agitation Free, Peter Hamel and numerous others which have never been widely heard outside Germany, and yet which are of far more genuine musical interest than most things being done in Britain and America at the moment.

Some people have observed the lack of identification and communication between audience and musician in German rock and come to the conclusion that it is essentially elitist - a direct contradiction with its political origins. This is, I believe, a grossly unfair estimation of the situation. What has really happened is that musicians have refused to arrive at any spurious compromises in order to gain superficial acceptance. At this moment in time they seem to have been justified; in America at the moment there is a growing feeling that German rock is about to find a large audience. Tangerine Dream will be touring there this Spring, and Amon Duul II have just been signed to American Atlantic. Can are also finding a fairly wide audience in the States. At the same time, Ash Ra Tempel have encouragingly re-emerged from obscurity with Lutz Ulbrich (formerly of Agitation Free) on second guitar and have been selling out a series of gigs in France. So have Timewind, the group recently started by Hans Schulze. [Hans?!]

It is significant that Ash Ra Tempel and Timewind are coming to prominence. Both are from Berlin and include members of the now defunct Agitation Free, who were a seminal force in the development of rock music in Berlin in the late sixties. Perhaps because West Berlin is so totally isolated, it provides an extreme illustration of everything I have said about German rock. Tangerine Dream and Klaus Schulze (originally their drummer) have pioneered the most individual musical styles - a kind of bare, dry Gothicism - to emerge in recent years, and they have done this without any audience at all for most of the time. Despite problems which have seemed all but insurmountable (including a protracted legal struggle with Ohr Musik) they have shown an enormous resilience and sense of musical purpose which is finally beginning to pay dividends.



There is such an enormous variety of music now coming out of West Germany that none of the characterisations of 'Krautrock' which have been made in Britain and America are at all adequate. On the one hand there are a number of jazz-rock groups of varying degrees of originality, the most prominent being Embryo led by Christian Burchard. They have made a series of albums (two featuring veteran jazzman Mal Waltron) of an extremely high standard, which, had they been made by an English or American group, would have attracted a good deal of attention. As it is, they are still unknown. In another direction there are bands like Jane and Grobschnitt (both on Brain-Metronome) who sound very much like British hard-rock bands, but with a higher level of composition and musicianship. Jane in particular show a sense of dynamics and swing not usually associated with continental bands, and their first album remains an all-time classic.

Disproving the cliche that German rock is humourless and over-intellectual, Guru-Guru's albums have been consciously ingeuous in their own meandering sort of way. Enormous brassband riffs degenerate rapidly into acid-distorted Chuck Berry and Bo Diddley interpretations; but behind everything there is always a great sense of fun in their music.

Both Jane and Guru-Guru have worked with producer/engineer Conny Plank at some time, and his influence on German rock has been tremendous. Plank's ability to get a crisp, immediate sound on disc is unequalled anywhere - but he does not make this his sole objective. Working with groups of various styles and aims he has rarely failed to use advanced studio techniques in order to enhance the musical end product. His views on his own role in the recording process are highly instructive:

"It is my conviction that every music has its own sound landscape and its own sound weather, and it is the task and duty of the producer to feel and consider this very special climate."

It is this willingness to adjust his approach to the needs and requirements of the bands he is working with that makes Plank's work so important in Germany. There is no such thing as the 'Conny Plank sound' and this is deliberate. He is scathing in his criticisms of developments in recording outside Germany - the progress made in the sixties impressed him, but then, "this development degenerated into an empty mannerism which turned the sound of even good bands into insensitive music."

And here perhaps he has encapsulated the difference between what is happening in Germany and events elsewhere: there is still a belief in individuality and experimentation for its own sake, coupled with a healthy attitude to the future of rock, rather than a necrophiliac obsession with its past. For my own part I believe that this attitude is sufficiently ingrained to survive the vagaries of financial success. Hopefully, the musicians I have mentioned (and many others besides) will get the chance to prove me right.




TECHNOLOGY WITHOUT TEARS

The instruments that make the music, discussed by Chris Simmonds.

Future generations of music students will surely regard the synthesizer as the instrument of the seventies. Although electronic keyboard prototypes had been designed years earlier, it was only in the seventies that the boundaries and conceptions of rock music were greatly expanded by the widespread acceptance and use of the new keyboards. Of the many exponents of electronic music currently advancing the conceptions of sound, Tangerine Dream are one of the most prominent. Their own success story is dealt with elsewhere: here we concern ourselves with the workings of their chosen instruments, and, with the three members handling some four keyboards each, the total array is a formidable one.

Technically, the proficient keyboard player can learn to play the synthesizer without difficulty, but along with its advantages it brings several drawbacks. While the sound of the electronic keyboard is quite innovative, its capabilities remove all the old conceptions of music making. The player and audience must both learn to accept totally new modes of expression. With such new sounds, then, it is gratifying to find the internal workings of the synthesizer suitably complex. Fronting the T. Dream line-up are the Moog, the VCS3 and the Mellotron, a potent combination more than capable of providing their unique sound.

The original idea behind the design of the Moog, so named after American founder Dr. Robert Moog, came from the workings of the already established electric instruments. The guitar, for instance, functions by taking an acoustically produced note, and changing it via the pick-up into electrical energy and then back into a different sound, perhaps louder and with different tonal qualities through a speaker. The idea for the synthesizer was to dispense with the acoustic origin of the sound, and use in its place an electrical component capable of transmitting the same characteristics in an electrical current as the magnetic pick-up. This component was the oscillator, and forms the basis of the Moog. Varying amounts of electrical energy can be passed through the oscillator, determining the intensity of the current, and thus the final note. So, almost by itself, the little oscillator facilitates simple production of truly electronic music. The current produced by the oscillator can be turned into the sound of a certain pitch, and so much more voltage will produce the note a tone or semi-tone above, and less current similarly gives out the lower notes. Thus middle C on the synthesizer keyboard, although finally playing middle C through the speaker, is simply the tab providing the amount of current needed to make the sound of middle C. So far, so good.

However, when another key is pressed down, our overworked oscillator receives not two separate voltages, but the sum of the two voltages. The resultant note would be well out of tune with everything else, with the consequence that the oscillator is by necessity monophonic. Still, the oscillator can be additionally controlled from another source, to give it attack and decay for example, and the tone can be altered by means of filters and other components which can themselves be manually adjusted like the tone controls on any amplifier.

For the production and adjustment of the note, the synthesizer basically has three circuits; tone sources, tone modifiers and control devices. The tone sources, as we have seen, derive from the oscillator with its minor subsidiary noise generators. The tone modifiers include several filters and modulators, controlled in most cases by a sample and hold circuit. This is the facility so often used by the showman who wants to impress his audience by leaving his machine to 'play by itself' while he walks away from it. It is obviously necessary to tune the oscillators to the same pitch as the other instruments in the band, and this has been one of the primary problems in synthesizer technology. For T. Dream, using so many electronic keyboards, keeping in tune throughout a gig has been their major problem, expressed so often by band spokesman Edgar Froese. "We have tuned up half an hour before the start," he said recently, "only to find that temperature changes had forced the instruments out of tune."

Nowadays any tendency towards temperament on the part of the components is minimised at the manufacturing stage by a simple survival of the fittest system. The completed instrument is left to run for some hours, and anything that can't take it is removed and replaced, and the test repeated until the instrument is stable. Unfortunately this means that for the components to be stable the machine must be given some time to warm up. A fine tuner control allows final adjustments to be made if necessary, and the concert is ready to begin.

The VCS3, also extensively played by Froese, has since its inception in 1969 been one of the most popular synthesizer models. Its attractive features include compactness combined with versatility, and, like the Moog, is capable of producing the most unusual sounds and effects so vital to the T. Dream music. With the same basic oscillator principle, the VC53 features attack, decay and reverberation controls among others, and, while the panel looks like the flight deck of Apollo 6, the instrument can turn out noises ranging from simulated drum ruffles to vowel-sounding coughs.

Thee third main instrument in the band's line up, already well used by such exponents as Tony McPhee and Patrick Moraz, is the Mellotron. Though the mellotron sounds are as exciting in their own way as the synthesizers', it operates on rather different principles. Originally designed by another American called Chamberlain, the 400, the most popular model, contains 35 pre-recorded tapes each with three parallel tracks. The depression of a key causes one of these tapes to run. The normal sounds on these tapes are flute, three violins and a cello, although a tape of any instrument can be installed to particular requirements.

A track selector chooses a sound, and on adjacent tracks the machine facilitates a mix of two tapes. The single keyboard model includes volume, tone and track controls, with a potch controller for tuning and special effects, plus the swell footpedal. It is a sure sign of the rapid advancement in the electronic keyboard field that Mellotronics (responsible for manufacture and distribution) have recently introduced a new two-keyboard model, incorporating 40 tapes mounted on movable and interchangeable heads.

Whether you like their music or not, the members of Tangerine Dream are certainly fine and adventurous musicians, and the combination of such players and such machines should certainly give the current music something to sit up and listen to very carefully.



PDF.

NORTH AMERICAN TOUR MARCH 29th – APRIL 26th, 1977

tour programmesOprettet af Jacob Pertou ons, november 11, 2009 21:43


TANGERINE DREAM
NORTH AMERICAN TOUR
March 29th – April 26th, 1977


Date - City - Venue - Promoted by
March 29th - Milwaukee - Riverside Theater - Daydream Productions
March 30th - Detroit - Ford Auditorium - Bamboo Productions
April 1st - Chicago - Aragon Ballroom - Jam Productions
April 2nd - Cleveland - Convention Center Music Hall - Belkin Productions
April 4th - Washington - Lisner Auditorium - Cellar Door Concerts
April 5th - New York - Avery Fisher Hall - Great Performers at Lincoln Center
April 6th - Philadelphia - Tower Theater - Electric Factory Concerts
April 9th - Montreal - Place Des Arts - Gilles Talbot, Inc.
April 11th - Quebec City - Hilton Convention Center - Gilles Talbot, Inc.
April 12th - Chicoutimi - Dufour Auditorium - Gilles Talbot, Inc.
April 15th - Hamilton - Hamilton - Place Gilles Talbot, Inc.
April 16th - Ottawa - Civic Center Gilles Talbot, Inc.
April 20th - Portland - Paramount Theater - John Bauer Concert Co.
April 21st - Seattle - Paramount Theater - John Bauer Concert Co.
April 25th - San Francisco - Berkeley Community Theater - FM Productions
April 26th - Los Angeles - Santa Monica Civic - Wolf & Rissmiller Concerts

All United States Concerts Presented in Association with Virgin Records & Epic Records
Tour concept and organisation Charles Levison and Andrew Graham-Stewart
TANGERINE DREAM: EDGAR FROESE / CHRISTOPH FRANKE / PETER BAUMANN
Tangerine Dream Personal / Tour Manager: Andrew Graham-Stewart
Tangerine Dream Stage Manager: Gerald C. Bakal
Tangerine Dream Road Crew: Chris Blake, Ken Capper

All USA Concerts Feature:
LASERIUM
Laserium Laserist: Richard Vanceunebrouck-Werth
Laserium Field Engineer: Arden Wray
Programme edited by Miles and written by Gel O'Connell & Miles
Programme produced by Andrew Graham-Stewart
Virgin Records, Inc. / AOT Records, Inc., 43 Perry Street, New York, N.Y. 10014.



Instrumentation
Edgar Froese
Mellotron MKS
Mellotron 400
Custom built Moog with sequencer
VCS3 synthesizer
PBG synthesizer and keyboard
Elka organ
Farfisa
Sfera sound effect equipment
Phase shifters
Gibson custom built guitar
12-string Rickenbacher
Fender Telecaster
Mouth Organ
Roland Ace Echo
ITA mixer

Christoph Franke
Heavily modified Moog 12
Moog keyboard
Projekt Elektronic trigger selecters
Rhythm computer
ARP Pro-solist
Mellotron 400
Elka Rhapsody
Revox echo
TFE mixer

Peter Baumann
Custom built Proiekt Elektronic synthesizer and keyboard
Fender electric piano
Mellotron 400
Revox echo
ITA mixer

Tangerine Dream use
AKG Microphones
PA system built by Martin Audio Limited.

Tangerine Dream

If Edgar Froese suddenly ups and charges across the stage, holding his guitar and playing old Rufus Thomas licks don't worry.

Tangerine Dream has always been a free group-and that means free for Edgar to return to his rhythm and blues roots as well as meaning the freedom that they have established for themselves to improvise on stage in direct response to the feeling they get from the audience, the acoustics of the hall, the atmosphere, and most of all, the interaction of their own states of mind, without the need to play any specific tunes.

If Edgar dons his guitar and transforms himself into Jimi Hendrix before your very eyes, this is because this is a pivotal point in the group's development. Their new album "Stratosfear” marks a return, after many years, to their use of conventional instruments (in addition to electronic ones) and also to recognisable tunes which they can repeat on stage.

So it seems they have completed a circle. Few people know what the beginning of it was like and yet they already have quite a history….

Edgar Froese began Tangerine Dream in 1967 but had been playing in groups before that. He was born in Tilsit on fune 6, 1944, and spent five years studying painting and sculpture before getting into music. His musical taste when he was young was mostly classical but in the grand tradition of art schools he became involved with a rock and roll band. As far as we are concerned, his musical history began one day in 1965.

“The first time I heard the Rolling Stones was in the middle of a rehearsal with a rock'n'roll group. I was first of all attracted by their looks. Their faces were absolutely damaged. They were the absolute opposite of the Beatles…"

He was playing with a group called The Ones. They had a conventional line-up of organ, lead guitar, bass guitar, drums and a vocalist. Edgar played lead guitar: "I can't sing, that's my problem".

They began playing gigs around Berlin and then, in 1966, released a single: "Lady Greengrass". It was on the Starclub label from Hamburg and is now one rare disc. "Lady Greengrass" though not written by Edgar, contains the memorable line: "Pop! The trees turn tangerine". A hint of things to come, maybe. Edgar explained it to me very simply: "It's about dope".

The flip-side "Love of Mine" was co-written by Edgar and shows him in his "soul" period.

In the summer of 66- they played a season in Cadaques, an exclusive artistic seaside resort about thirty miles from Barcelona in Spain. It was here that Edgar met the surrealist painter Salvador Dali. Not just met him but played in his famous villa.

"This was the biggest change I ever had in music," said Edgar. "By seeing the way he was working, talking and thinking, I found that EVERYTHING was possible. I thought I would do the same as he did in painting, in music."

Edgar and The Ones returned to Berlin and he began to investigate modern contemporary and electronic music. And there were some amazing things to hear: in electronics Milton Babbitt, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Xenakis, Toshi Ichyanagi and many others were splicing tapes, speeding them up, distorting sounds and generating notes through a variety of new techniques. The technical barriers were being broken.

John Cage, Morton Subotnick, Luciano Berio and others were extending the range of musical possibilities and the idea of WHAT WAS MUSIC. Berlin, with its curious hothouse island existence, had massive cultural grants which meant that many of the best experimental composers were often visiting or performing in the city. There was a lot to listen to and find out about.

Left: Edgar at the Forum Theatre in Berlin, 1968.
Right: Edgar making a sculpture of Salvador Dali's head at Dali's villa in Port Lligat, Spain, in 1967


In 1967 The Ones returned for another season in Cadaques and again saw Dali. They did a concert in his villa, making music to go with his "Christ Statue" and working on a television film about Dali with the French producer J.C. Averty.

By now, the newly emerging underground scene had been breeding like a fast atomic reactor and in just about every European capital and in every small artistic community there was now a small community of drug experimenters, mystics, poets, lady astrologers, "Happening" artists and philosophers. The spin-off from the explosive London and Californian Underground scenes which scattered hippies and misfits in kaftans and bells across Europe like grapeshot.

Underground newspapers started, people bought UV lights to look at their psychedelic posters with and smooth talking space cadets arrived with tabs of acid made in London or San Francisco. They were exclusive little communities of people who could sense the changes coming. In Cadaques Edgar met people from the Contemporary Dance Ensemble of Paris and a memorable lady called Amanda. At the Paradiso, a small club, he would sit up through the night talking about philosophy and music.

The Ones: Edgar Froese's first group in Salvador Dali's garden in Port Lligat, Spain, in 1966.

The Ones spent four months in Paris, playing at Johnny Halliday's club for a while but making no money. They actually reached the stage where five of them were sleeping in the one room and they were buying horse meat and taking it to the Bois de Boulogne to cook over an open fire.

They played in a show with Jimmy Cliff at the Locomotive Club near the Moulin Rouge. "We played soul numbers. We used to do Midnight Hour three times a night-it was the best number we had!"

They moved back to Berlin and the group split up. The drummer had found a French girlfriend in Paris and stayed behind. The singer left. Edgar set about forming a new group. One which would play the sort of music that he was interested in.

By now the music of the great underground groups had reached Berlin: Zappas' "Freak Out" and "Absolutely Free" albums, The Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane, The Doors… Edgar particularly liked "the special modulation of Morrison's voice" and in the early days his new group did special arrangements of Doors' numbers. Hendrix also had a big impact. "The biggest shock I ever got as a guitarist was to listen to Jimi Hendrix. I saw what could be done with the guitar..."

Edgar formed Tangerine Dream in September 1967 and they rehearsed through the autumn and winter. Their first performance was in January 1968 at the Technical University in Berlin. Their first line-up was:

Edgar Froese-lead guitar
Volker Hombach-flute and violin
Lanse Hapshash-drums
Kurt Kerkenberg-bass

Tangerine Dream's first line-up, L to R: Lanse Hapshash, Edgar Froese, Kurt Kerkenberg, and Volker Hombach.

Tangerine Dream was named from lines in "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds" from "Sgt Pepper". The drummer was named after Hapshash and the Coloured Coat, the London underground poster makers Mick English and Nigel Waymouth who also cut a psychedelic album. The influence of the underground scene was huge. Psychedelic clubs opened in Germany: "Creamcheese" in Düsseldorf, "Blow Up" in München. Edgar and the group were into the drug scene. They were an underground group but in the Berlin tradition.

The consumer aspect of flower-power didn't cut much ice in Berlin where the main youth reaction was against the advanced materialism and prosperity of post-war Germany. They were experimenting with communal living, reading Wilhelm Reich, breaking through traditional German-puritanism and looking for freedom through sex, drugs, music, new life styles and organisations. The new ideas from San Francisco and London were interesting and useful but the bells and beads side of it wasn't all that relevant if your commune was constantly under attack from armed police.

Tangerine Dream played at the famous Berlin underground club The Zodiac where one room was white and the other black.

Looking back on the period, Edgar reflected nostalgically. "The best days I ever had were in the Zodiac Club in Berlin. Those three months. We played five to six hours each night. It was the best part I ever had in my musical life. It was totally myself into this equipment. I sometimes get bored trapped behind those keyboards…”

The May 1968 Paris student uprising and its parallel demonstrations in Berlin had a big effect on the group. "We were political. We tried to explain our feelings through our music. We played very hard stuff, smashed speakers up and everything…”

Their audience was mostly university people, highly political students, often fresh from a confrontation with the riot police and feeling really mean. Tangerine Dream's music reflected their feelings. It was totally free. It cut through all conventions. It was a complete break with the past. They did away with tunes – even tunes were a bourgeois relic of the old society.

Everything had to be created NEW and IN THE PRESENT. They were loud, aggressive and heavy.

Tangerine Dream weren't the only underground group in Germany at this time. Most of what are now known as the experimental German rock bands had their birth pangs in the riotous summer of 1968: Jane. Agitation Free, Guru Guru Groove, Time ls Now, Kraan, Can, Ash Ra Tempel, Amon Düül and so on were formed by people active al that time, most of them involved in the commune movement.

Tangerine Dream played on bills with Gunther Hampel and the great German free jazz sax player Peter Brotzmann. The only song that they did which was not their own was the Pink Floyd's "lnterstellar Overdrive" which they used the opening bars from as a lumping off point for free improvisation.

In September 1968 they played at the International Essener Song-Tagen, the biggest rock festival in Germany. On the same bill were Frank Zappa, Tim Buckley and the only other big German underground act at that time, Amon Düül.

By this time Lanse Hapshash had been replaced by the Swedish jazz drummer Sven Johannson. They were beginning to reach a wider audience but in March 1969 the group split up. Volker Hombach left and is now a cameraman for Fassbinder. The others wandered off and Edgar got in a Liverpool drummer called Paul and a Dutch bass player.

This new line-up was short-lived. In fact it held together for only about four months during which time they did a small TV soundtrack before running completely out of money and disbanding.

"I thought all the time about experimental music. It was OK with rock music but I wasn't involved with iust doing songs."

Then in November, Edgar met Klaus Schultz. Together with Konrad Schnitzler they rented a factory floor and, using a two track Revox, they made an experimental tape. Edgar played guitar and organ, Klaus was on drums and Conny Schnitzler on cello, violin and flute. They also used a cash register with a contact mike on it, they smashed glasses and created all kinds of other sound effects. They were getting closer to what Edgar wanted.

They took the tape to Rolf Kaiser's Ohr-Musik record company in Berlin and, strangely enough, they said "OK, it's got no commercial chance but we'll take you." In fact Rolf-Ulrich Kaiser had already written about Tangerine Dream in his "Das Buch Der Neuen Pop Music" which first appeared in 1969 and introduced Zappa, the Fugs, Dylan and the U.S. West Coast underground groups to a wider German audience.

They did concerts all over the German-speaking parts of Europe, particularly in Austria. Then in 1970 Ohr released "Electronic Meditations" with the Froese, Schultz, Schnitzler lineup. Their first album and the raw influences of Zappa and the Pink Floyd can still be felt amid their own craziness.

Klaus Schultz left, going on to work with Ash Ra Tempel and then make a series of solo albums some of which are released in the UK by Virgin.

Early in 1971 Edgar met Christoph Franke (born on April 6, 1953) who was then playing with Agitation Free. Christoph had a reputation as one of the best young jazz drummers in Germany. He had studied with the Strasbourg Percussion Ensemble and done a six month experimental course at Nancy in France in which equal numbers of musicians and theatrical people discussed the relationship between music and the modern theatre. Agitation Free was a seminal group on the German scene - as well as giving Christoph Franke to Tangerine Dream it also provided members of Ash Ra Tempel and the short-lived Timewind.

Christoph first saw Tangerine Dream playing at a little studio for experimental music in Berlin. "They were making experiments with instruments and also with visuals, with pictures and exhibitions." It looked good to Christophe.

Edgar, Christoph and Conny Schnitzler did TV work and played at the Arts Lab in Vienna (this was another of the European imports from London, being based on the one in London). Then Konrad left.

He was replaced by Steve Schroyder and with him on organ they recorded "Alpha Centauri". "Alpha Centauri" was their first really big success. It sold between 15 and 20,000 copies, which in Germany at that time, and for that type of music, was a very good sale. It was recorded in engineer Dieter Dierk's studio in Koeln and included on it two guest musicians, Udo Dennebourg on flute and Roland Paulyck on synthesizer. Then Steve Schroyder left.

They had a number of people on organ before the line-up was finally settled. Edgar looked around the clubs in Berlin until he finally found Peter Baumann.

Peter was playing organ with a rock band called The Ants, He joined Tangerine Dream. The line-up was complete. They cut "Zeit", their first double album, and at about the same time, early 1972, they recorded their first single "Ultima Thule Pts I and II" - a rock single with a fairly strong early Pink Floyd influence. It has a lot of hard attacking energy and is in complete contrast to "Zeit". Collectors are now paying up to $20 a copy for it.

"Zeit" -largo in four movements-had a number of guest musicians on it. Steve Schroyder returned to play organ, giving Peter more time to work with his VCS3 synthesizer. Florian Fricke from the group Popol Vuh played Moog on one track and there were four cello players. This is the first time that Monique and Edgar's son Jerome makes an appearance on an album sleeve.

In June 1972, Tangerine Dream played at the Ossiach Festival. This was the last time they were going to use conventional instruments: organ, guitar, drums. The festival was recorded and released as a double album by BASF Records as "Ossiach Live". The Tang's track is called "Oscillator Planet Concert".

Then came "Atem" , the last record that they did with Ohr-Musik. It was at this time that an unexpected new factor began to influence their career. Without it they might still be as obscure as many other German bands are to the British audiences.

They got their first telephone call from John Peel in November 1973. He had already written Edgar a letter-iust a simple note saying that he was sitting in a hotel somewhere out in the country listening to records and that he just thought that he would write and let them know that he liked their music. That was all. One month later Monique Froese picked up the telephone and it was Peel again-saying the same thing. It was John who gave the group their underground reputation in Britain by talking about them, playing their records on his programme, and finally by making "Atem" his album of the year, six months after it had been released. They were probably better known in Britain than in their homeland. Many Germans thought that they were a British group.

They signed with a British record company–Virgin Records.

February 20, 1974, "Phaedra" was released. Despite virtually no airplay, despite being their first British release and being a German band still living in Germany, the album reached the Top Ten. John Peel's programme had prepared an audience for it.

Tangerine Dream made a soundtrack recording for the Chichester Festival production of "Oedipus Tyrannus" but the music was used unsympathetically and the results were disastrous.

The success of "Phaedra" led to the group appearing in Britain. Their first British concert was at the Victoria Palace Theatre on June 15, 1974.

Their careers now shifted into top gear, albums and tours appear thick and fast in the chronology. On June 21., 1974, Edgar released his first solo album "Aqua" which used the revolutionary new Artificial Head recording system invented by Gunther Brunschen. Edgar had been working on the album from November 1973 until March 1974 in Berlin. Chris Franke helped out on Moog on one of the four tracks.

They finished of 1974 with a huge tour, doing twenty dates in Britain from November 26 until December 2 and premiering their new videosynthesizer at a Rainbow concert. On December 13 they did the first of their cathedral concerts, designed to utilize the wonderful acoustics of such buildings and to make each concert into something a bit more than just a gig-more of a memorable event-for both the audience and themselves. Unfortunately 5,000 people crammed themselves into a mediaeval building which only holds 2,000 and the result was chaos-leading to international outrage.



January 1975 saw them back at Virgin's recording studio, The Manor, set in the countryside near Oxford. This is where they recorded "Phaedra" and now they were recording "Rubycon". "Phaedra" went gold in Australia and so they did a three week tour there in March.

"Rubycon" was released on March 21 and was an even greater success than "Phaedra". They sold out the Royal Albert Hall on April 2 and in August they were special guests at the Orange Festival, held in the Roman amphitheatre in Orange in Southern France. Here they tried out the new equipment that they had bought with the money which came with the success of their albums.



On September 14 they headlined the French Communist Party-sponsored "Fete de I'Humanite" north of Paris. A crowd of 30,000 attended the concert which opened a French tour.

Through June and fuly Edgar had been working on a second solo album in Berlin and on September 28th "Epsilon in Malaysian Pale" was released, showing Edgar in a very lyrical and romantic mood.

From October 4 until the 23rd they did a twelve-date sell-out tour of Britain including three cathedral concerts: Coventry, Liverpool and York Minster. Tony Palmer filmed the Coventry Cathedral performance and it was shown on BBC-TV one year later.

The tapes from their British and French tours were examined and a certain amount of overdubbing done down at The Manor and Tangerine Dream's first live album was ready to go. "Ricochet" was released on November 28. It too entered the British charts. Christoph Franke described the record to me at the time:

"We had to edit because the tapes of the concerts are much too long to use in one context. So we had to hear horrible forty or fifty hours of music-kilometers of tapes to find the most important parts of our concerts, the most typical things of us, typical of the last tour. And we are quite satisfied. We are very satisfied with the result."



From December until the end of February, Tangerine Dream toured extensively, doing concerts in Austria, Switzerland, Germany, France, Spain and Belgium, and then in March 1976, began another unique project.

William Friedkin, director of "The French Connection" and "The Exorcist" had become a fan of their music. He proposed that they make the soundtrack for his next film. But this was not to be just an ordinary movie soundtrack. He wanted them to make the soundtrack before shooting actually began so that he could shoot in relation to the music. Thus, having studied the script, the complete soundtrack was recorded. The film, entitled "The Sorcerer" will be premiered in Los Angeles on June 24th. It promises to be one of the biggest movies of 1977. The soundtrack album, comprising Tangerine Dream music exclusively, will be in early June.

In the meantime, as the result of negotiations with Virgin Records, their early albums began to be issued in Britain: first "Zeit" and then "Alpha Centauri" and "Atem" packaged together as a double album.

In early lune 1976, the Tangs did concerts in Manchester, Brighton and the Royal Albert Hall.

Back in Berlin, they began work on their latest album "Stratosfear", a radical departure from their previous albums. It uses recognisable instruments and recognisable melodies: piano, harpsichord, guitar and mouth-organ-all are there. There is even a snatch of "Moonlight Sonata" before Edgar improvises on it. It was the mouth-organ which seemed the most obtrusive to me. I asked Edgar about it:

"... I wanted a natural sound to make it sound more human. I was driving through Berlin and I saw a harmonica in the window of a music store and bought it. Everybody laughed about it but it really works…" He leaned forward and confided in me:

"Now I can tell the truth. My real love is the blues. I have all their records – Lightning Hopkins, Muddy Waters ... they are my real love.

"Blues is the point where everything came from. I think the Greeks, 2000 years ago, they played the blues. It's just trying to explain your life by music..."

So if Edgar lays a few Chicago Southside riffs on you-don't be surprised. Anything might happen with Tangerine Dream.

On October 20th the group commenced a massive sell-out tour of Europe with ten concerts in Germany (their first ever tour of their own country), nine in Britain, three in Belgium, seven in France and three in Spain. The tour finally confirmed Tangerine Dream as one of Europe's very hottest acts: North America will shortly experience the reason why.

MILES


An appreciation

I first heard Tangerine Dream in 1970 on French radio, it was their first album "Electronic Meditation" and it sounded absolutely inspired. Retrospectively I should perhaps add that my critical faculties were somewhat clouded by the combined effects of long wave radio interference and "too much to drink". Two years later I actually obtained a copy of the album together with their second release "Alpha Centauri". Time had not dampened my enthusiasm but the records came close to doing so. They seemed like elegantly anarchic pastiches of everything that can go just slightly askew when a powerful imagination lacks either the time or the facilities to realize its most innovative projections.

"Journey through a Burning Brain" from Electronic Meditation is a case in point. The piece hangs together because there is a definite end in view: the creation of a certain brooding and then crazed atmosphere. That end is reached most effectively despite a few musical misunderstandings along the way. But the overall impression is still one of the actual music falling short of the ideas which lay behind it. "Alpha Centauri" suffers in a similar way-the sound textures and instrumentation seem strangely inappropriate. So much so that they obscure a good deal of the music rather than help it, and make the record seem much more derivative than it really is.

After listening to the first two Tangerine Dream albums it would be impossible to predict the third ("Zeit", double-album, released 1972). The advance made over previous efforts is quite staggering-the personnel is, for the first time, the present trio, with the addition of four unobtrusive but decidedly sympathetic cellists–it is as though their music had made a completely fresh start, divorced not only from their own past but also from everything else. Perhaps the best way to understand "Zeit" is from an artistic analogy. The sculptor and the artist start from two opposite points: the latter begins with empty space and fills it, while the former begins with a solid mass and selectively empties it. Most musicians are like the artist; they start with silence and fill it up with sound, sometimes for better and often for worse. "Zeit', on the other hand, is an act of musical sculpture. A harmonic framework is established and then gradually chipped away to reveal the inner structure that forms it. Blocks become surfaces and surfaces become lines. Sound texture is handled in the same way-the movement is uniformly from solid to liquid, opaque to clear.

It was here that Tangerine Dream evolved their technique and method. Most of "Zeit" is free improvisation–the only commonly agreed element being that of mood or atmosphere. The predominance of electronic keyboards makes it impossible to single out the individual contributions of the group's members and this fact is paralleled in the organic uniformity which characterizes both "Zeit" and their subsequent work. The further advantage of electronic instrumentation is that it is relatively free of fixed musical associations (when we hear a certain guitar sound we usually have immediate ideas about what the music represents and this is very much the case for all conventional instruments), attention is directed to more fundamental matters.

"Zeit" is remarkable too for the absence of any distinct melodic themes. This has been a stumbling block for many people, but it should not really be so. The music is about relationships between sound in time and space, definite statements are out of place in such a context.

Having established a unique identity with "Zeit", Tangerine Dream was left with the problem of extending and applying this to new musical areas. Their next album "Atem" (or "breath") was a first step in this direction. Reintroducing percussion (for its sound quality rather than anything else), they returned to territory explored rather tentatively before 1972. In fact "Atem" is in many ways the record that "Alpha Centauri" should have been. It combines moments of loneliness with passages of great tension and there is much more emphasis on musical dynamics. As with all the albums after "Zeit" it is graphically evocative almost as though it were conceived as the soundtrack to some episode belonging to the furthest recesses of the human imagination. The "Soundtrack" analogy is not intended in denigration however: the music comes first and the film might one day be made which would be capable of serving as its accompaniment.

It was in 1974, after "Atem", that Tangerine Dream made their first British album release. "Phaedra" is a record which stands very much alone in rock music. For the first time a band used synthesizer rhythms with the same flexibility and coherence that one normally expects from a drummer with a conventional kit and two arms and legs. In addition there were some delightful themes and a new interest in their refinement and development. But this alone cannot explain "Phaedra's" enormous appeal. This stems from the unusual contrasts which it presents. The synthesizer rhythms are far more relentless and have greater momenbum than a human drummer can produce, but at the same time their precision has a delicacy of its own. Similarly the electronic keyboards have an immensely rich sound-range but this is combined with musical structures and ideas of great simplicity. The listener is never intimidated by the technology of "Phaedra" and this perhaps illustrates Tangerine Dream's greatest musical strength. Although they have extended the boundaries of rock music by exploring the possibilities of complex technical innovations, they never allow technology to take control of their music. Machines may take the place of less efficient machines but they never usurp the most important.

If "Phaedra" represented a partial reconciliation with the mainstream of rock music, then those who expected the band to gradually reach some sort of compromise position were in for a disappointment. "Rubycon", their next release, was a natural enough progression, but instead of finding them musically closer to other bands, it makes their interest in classical music even more explicit. Edgar has always named classical composers, particularly those whose music is inclined towards impressionism, as a main influence. But the influences are not those which tend to lead to embarrassing attempts by rock musicians to "do the classics", or to introduce inapposite neoclassical effects in order to decorate fairly standard material. No, the influence is much more a question of musical attitude: the leisurely development of ideas, their nuances of mood and texture, the wide human task: that of creativity, emotional range; these are the classical elements which lie with "Rubycon". It has a broader vision than "phaedra" and is at once more unified and more demanding. The synthesizer rhythms are very closely integrated with the musical fabric and often work in a purely implied way.

Anybody who saw Tangerine Dream play live between the release of "Phaedra" and earlier this year must have been deeply impressed by their ability to create beautifully complex and yet totally coherent improvisations. Often, these pieces would refer in passing to musical passages from the records, but at the same time every piece of music was independent and unique. It was not surprising that they released a live album, "Ricochet", in order to tap this storehouse of performances. The most noticeable thing about "Ricochet", was that Edgar was playing guitar again! (It appears on every Tangerine Dream album, but not since the first two had it been recognisable as such).

"Ricochet" has a very sharp edge to it – the band seems to want to get on with the music and cram in as much as they possibly can. In fact it can be taken as a more intense statement of the ideas and techniques developed on "Phaedra" and "Rubycon", with, perhaps, the addition of a more noticeable commitment to melodic content. As such it both summarized their past work and pointed the way to future directions. Its richness and accomplished assurance make it very difficult to accept as a live album there is certainly no sacrifice of any musical standards, if anything these are more demanding. Also more apparent is the spatial variation and placing of sounds. Quadrophonic experiments have been carried out on some live appearances and this is likely to become an important aspect of their future work. On "Ricochet" this comes across as a careful distinction between "close" and "distant" sound-the contrasts achieved give the various instruments used a great deal of colour and vitality.

Before considering "Stratosfear", their current album, I want to mention Edgar Froese's two solo albums "Aqua" (released 1974) and "Epsilon in Malaysian Pale" (released 1975). As I have already indicated, it is impossible at times to adequately separate the respective contributions of the band's members. Edgar's solo efforts do at least provide some clues in this direction. Both "Aqua" and "Epsilon" are dominated by their mood, which is intensely introspective and melancholic-the instrumentation is much more spare and, particularly on "Epsilon", reminiscent of "Zeit". In view of this, I think it is perhaps justifiable to attribute to Edgar a large part of the band's fundamental characteristics.

Unlike many solo albums made from within the context of a band, Edgar's do not contain material that would not fit in with the band's established style. It really is as though Edgar is exploring musical avenues suggested by "Zeit" which the band as an entity have not taken up. Despite this it would be quite understandable if the group as a whole were to go and produce two albums just like them!

Having said that, it is also true that "Stratosfear" is the furthest removed album from "Zeit" that Tangerine Dream have yet produced. The four pieces of music which comprise it sound far more "composed" than anything they have done before, and the effect is really quite stunning. Without changing the overall impression of grandeur and (dare I say it?) space, there are some striking changes of mood and direction within some of the pieces. They comprise a rather loose suite although on extended listening the continuity grows rather than decreases. Their instrumentation is more varied and effective than ever, while svnthesizer and computer rhythms have become totally integrated into the percussion effects that the music requires.

In comparison to previous albums, "Stratosfear" shows a far greater attention to musical detail, so much so that its smooth progression belies the complexity of its structure. It is as though the sounds have been chosen and assembled with the precision and care of a master watchmaker. When the work is complete only the hands move!

Tangerine Dream has reached a point now, with "Stratosfear", at which they are able to combine both written and improvised musical elements at will. This naturally gives them a freedom and their music a strength which is rare not only within rock, but in all music. The new album is a more than adequate testament to that musical strength.


LASERIUM

It is with great pleasure that Laser Images Inc., producers of LASERIUM, provide the laser effects for the phenomenal TANGERINE DREAM. LASERIUM, The original Cosmic Laser Concert and the new LASERILTM II, have been experienced by over 3-1/2 million people in the United States, Canada and

Japan. The first LASERIUM concert was performed just over three years ago at Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles, and now LASERIUM is being performed in 15 cities.

The laser effects you will experience are being produced live by the laserist. Using a one-watt Krypton gas laser as its light source, the LASERIUM proiector refracts the tiny beam into four primary colors which travel through a series of optics to emerge as laser snowflakes or cloud formations suspended in space. Three years of technological refinement result in the LASERIUM projector being used in this concert tour. A custom-designed rear projection screen enables the images to appear three dimensional.

The all-new LASERIUM II, A Celebration of North American Music, employs an expanded proiection system which produces visual effects never seen before. LASERIUM II is currently in Los Angeles, Seattle, New York, Toronto, and St. Louis.

Ivan Dryer, 38, creator of LASERIUM and President of Laser Images Inc., has long been an admirer of TANGERINE DREAM. A well-known experimental and documentary film maker, Dryer wrote, edited, directed or photographed over 40 films during his 12-year career. He produced "Laserimage" the earliest feature film comprised exclusively of laser effects. During the filming of "Laserimage," Dryer recognized that the film medium did not adequately serve laser imagery. It was then that the LASERIUM concept was first conceived.

Los Angeles, California serves as the corporate headquarters for the 75 member Laser Images Inc. staff. As the forerunner in the laser entertainment industry, Laser Images Inc. will continue to present the LASERIUM concept, produce special effects and introduce an innovative Dome Theater Complex whose interior spherical projection surface will be the largest in the world.

Ivan Dryer and the staff of Laser Images Inc. hope that you enjoy these laser effects created especially for TANGERINE DREAM.


TANGERINE DREAM

ALBUMS AVAILABLE
ON VIRGIN RECORDS & TAPES


Alpha Centauri/Atem VD25O4 (Double-Import)
Zeit VD2503 (Double-Import)
Phaedra* V2010 (Import)
Rubycon* V2025 (Import)
Ricochet* V2044 (Import)
*Released in Canada through Virgin/Polydor

LATEST RELEASE

Stratosfear USA-P234427 Virgin / CBS
Canada-V2068 Virgin/Polydor


SOLO ALBUMS

Aqua Edgar Froese V2016 (Import)
Epsilon in Malaysian Pale Edgar Froese V2040 (Import)
Macula Transfer Edgar Froese Brain 60008 (Distributed by Metronome-Import)
Romance '76 Peter Baumann V2069 (Import)

================== PDF version (60 MB) ==================

Tourbook 1990

tour programmesOprettet af Jacob Pertou tor, juni 18, 2009 19:00





















PDF

TOUR 82/83

tour programmesOprettet af Jacob Pertou fre, marts 06, 2009 18:11






















1978 TOUR PROGRAMME

tour programmesOprettet af Jacob Pertou tor, februar 05, 2009 23:13

EUROPEAN TOUR DATES

February 19 – Berlin Eissporthalle
February 20 – Offenbach Stadthalle
February 21 – Mannheim Musen Saal
February 22 – Munich Deutsches Museum
February 23 – Erlangen Stadthalle
February 24 – Hamburg Audimax
February 25 – Dusseldorf Philipshalle
February 26 – Nancy Foire Des Expositions
February 27 – Rheims Opera
February 28 – Rouen Parc Exposition

March 1 – Nantes Palais De La Beaujoire
March 3 – Dijon Palais Des Congres
March 4 – Lille Chapiteau Parking De La Foire Internationale
March 6 – Paris Palais Des Congres
March 8 – Bordeaux Chapiteau Campus De Talence
March 9 – Pau Parc Des Expositions
March 11 – Pomplona Pabellon Araitasuma
March 12 – Valencia Pabellon Deportivo Marcol
March 13 – Barcelona Neuvo Pabellon De Bardalona
March 15 – Marseille Chapiteau
March 17 – Brussels Cirque Royale
March 19 – Oxford Newtheatre
March 20 – London Hammersmith Odeon
March 21 – Portsmouth Guildhall
March 22 – Birmingham Odeon
March 23 – Newcastle City Hall
March 24 – Glasgow Apollo
March 25 – Manchester Apollo
March 26 – Liverpool Empire
March 27 – Croydon Fairfield Halls
March 28 – London Hammersmith Odeon



PERSONNEL

Tangerine Dream:
Edgar Froese
Chris Franke
Klaus Krieger
Steve Jolliffe

Personal/Tour Management: Andrew Graham-Stewart

Crew:
Tony Powell (Stage Manager and Lights)
Robbie Sworder (Sound)
Chris Blake (Stage)
John Abbott (Stage)
George Cwik (Technician/Stage)
Robbie Cwik (Technician/Stage)
Steve Moles (PA)
Simon Deerine (Stage)
Des Seal (Trucking)

All concerts feature specially designed show by Laserium Laserists:
Ron Pollock and Jim Hannigan
German concerts promoted-by Lippmann and Rau
French concerts promoted by Gilbert Coulier/Assaad Debs except-Paris by Frederic Serfati/Assaad Debs
Spanish concerts promoted by Guy Mercader
Brussels concert promoted by Ludo Debruyn
British concerts promoted by Adrian Hopkins in association with Andrew Graham Stewart
Programme written and edited by Miles



EQUIPMENT LIST

EDGAR
OBERHEIM SYNTHESIZER
MELLOTRON
ARP
KORA POLYPHONIC SYNTHESIZER
SOUNDCRAFT MIXER
MXR DIGITAL DELAY
MXR DISTORTION
CUSTOM GIBSON
FENDER TELECASTER
RICKENBACKER 12 STRING
KUSTOM COMBO AMP

STEVE
HOHNER CLAVINET
ELKA RHAPSODY
LYRICON ELECTRIC FLUTE
ROLAND SYNTHESIZERS
H.H. DESK
FENDER RHODES ELECTRIC PIANO
TYCOBRAHE FLANGER
CUSTOM
PHASER
TENDER SAX
ALTO FLUTE
PICCOLO
BASS FLUTE
COR ANGLAIS
SOPRANO SAX

KLAUS
POLYESTER CUSTOM BUILT:-
26” BASS
20” BASS
18” TOM-TOM
16” TOM-TOM
14” TOM-TOM
13” TOM-TOM
12” TOM-TOM
GRETSCH SNARE
LUDWIG SNARE
ZILODIAN CYMBALS
THAI GONGS

CHRIS
PPG SYNTHESIZER
ELKA RHAPSODY
OBERHEIM OB1
ARP. SOLOIST
MOOG KEYBOARD CONTROLLER
PROJECT ELECTRONIC CUSTOM SEQUENCE & SYNTHESIZER BANK
MELLOTRON






THE TANGERINE DREAM HISTORY

Edgar Froese began Tangerine Dream in 1967 but had been staying in groups before that. He was born in Tilsit on June 6, 1944 and spent five years studying painting and sculpture before getting into music. His musical taste when he was young was mostly classical but in the grand tradition of art schools he became involved with a rock and roll band. As far as we are concerned, his musical history began one day in 1965:

”The first time I heard The Rolling Stones was in the middle of a rehearsal with a rock 'n' roll group. I was first of all attracted by their looks. Their faces were absolutely damaged. They were the absolute opposite of The Beatles... ”
He was playing with a group called The Ones. They had a conventional lineup of organ, lead guitar, bass guitar, drums and a vocalist. Edgar played lead guitar: ”...I can't sing, that's my problem. ”

They began playing gigs round Berlin and then, in 1966, released a single: ”Lady Greengrass" on the Starclub label from Hamburg, now very rare.

”Lady Greengrass” though not written by Edgar, contains the memorable line: ”Pop ! The trees turn tangerine”. A hint of things to come, maybe. Edgar explained it to me very simply: ”It's about dope.”

The flipside, ”Love of Mine” was co-written by Edgar and shows him in his 'soul' period.

In the summer of 66 they played a season in Cadaques, an exclusive artistic seaside resort about thirty miles from Barcelona in Spain. It was here that Edgar met the surrealist painter Salvador Dali. Not just met him but played in his famous villa.

”This was the biggest change I ever had in music” said Edgar. ”By seeing the way he was working, talking and thinking, I found that everything was possible. I thought that I would do the same as he did in painting in music.”

Edgar and The Ones returned to Berlin and he began to investigate modern contemporary and electronic music. And there were some amazing things to hear: In electronics Milton Babbitt, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Xenakis, Toshi Ichyanagi and many others were splicing tapes, speeding them up, distorting sounds and generating notes through a variety of new techniques. The technical barriers were being broken.

John Cage, Morton Subotnick, Luciano Berio and others were extending the range of musical possibilities and the idea of what was music. Berlin, with its curious hothouse island existence, had massive cultural grants which meant that many of the best experimental composers were often visiting or performing in the city. There was a lot to listen and find out about.

In 1967 The Ones returned for another season in Cadaques and again saw Dali. They did a concert in his villa, making music to go with his ”Christ Statue” and working on a television film about Dali with the French producer J.C. Averty.
By now, the newly emerging underground scene had been breeding and in just about every European capitol and in every small artistic community there was now a small community of drug experimenters, mystics, poets, lady astrologers, 'Happening' artists and philosophers. The spin-off from the explosive London and Californian Underground scenes which scattered hippies and misfits in kaftans and bells across Europe like grapeshot.

Underground newspapers started, people bought UV lights to look at their psychedelic posters with and smooth talking space cadets arrived with tabs of acid made in London or San Francisco. They were exclusive little communities of people who could sense the changes coming. In Cadaques Edgar met people from The Contemporary Dance Ensemble of Paris and a memorable lady called Amanda. At the Paradiso, a small club, he would sit up through the night talking about philosophy and music.

The Ones spent four months in Paris, playing at Johnny Halliday's club for a while but making no money. They actually reached the stage where five of them were sleeping in the one room and they were buying horse meat and taking it to the Bois de Boulogne to cook over an open fire.


They played in a show with Jimmy Cliff at the Locomotive Club near the Moulen Rouge. ”We played soul numbers. We used to do ”Midnight Hour” three times a night – it was the best number we had!”

They moved back to Berlin and the group split up. The drummer had found a French girlfriend in Paris and stayed behind. The singer left. Edgar set about forming a new group. One which would play the sort of music that he was interested in.

By now the music of the great underground groups had reached Berlin: Zappa's ”Freak Out” and ”Absolutely Free” albums, The Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane, The Doors... Edgar particularly liked the special modulation of Morrison's voice” and in the early days his new group did special arrangements of Doors numbers.

Hendrix also had a big impact. ”The biggest shock I ever got as a guitarist was to listen to Jimi Hendrix. I saw what could be done with the guitar... ”

Edgar formed Tangerine Dream in September 1967 and they rehearsed through the autumn and winter. Their first performance was in January 1968 at the Technical University in Berlin.

Their first lineup was:
Edgar Froese: lead guitar
Volker Hombach – flute and violin
Lange Hapshash - drums
Kirt Herkenberg – bass

Tangerine Dream was named from lines in ”Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds” from ”Sgt. Pepper”. The drummer was named after Hapshash and the Coloured Coat, the London underground poster makers Mick English and Nigel Waymouth who also cut a psychedelic album. The influence of the' underground scene was huge. Psychedelic clubs opened in Germany: ”Creamcheese” in Dusseldorf. ”Blow Up” in München. Edgar and the group were into the drug scene. They were an underground group but in the Berlin tradition.

The consumer aspect of flower-power didn't cut much ice-in Berlin where the main youth reaction was against the advanced materialism and prosperity of post-war Germany. They were experimenting with communal living, reading Wilhelm Reich, breaking through traditional German puritanism and looking for freedom through sex, drugs, music, new life styles and organisations. The new ideas from San Francisco and London were interesting and useful but the bells and beads side of it wasn't all that relevant if your commune was constantly under attack from armed police.

Tangerine Dream played at the famous Berlin underground club The Zodiac where one room was white and the other black. Looking back on that period Edgar reflected nostalgically, ”The best days I ever had were in the Zodiac Club in Berlin. Those three months. We played five or six hours each night. It was the best part I ever had in my musical life. It was totally free. These days I have to concentrate myself into this equipment. I sometimes get bored trapped behind those keyboards...”

The May 1968 Paris student uprising and its parallel demonstrations in Berlin had a big effect on the group. ”We were political. We tried to explain our feelings through our music. We played very hard stuff, smashed speakers up and everything.. . ”

Their audience was mostly university people, highly political students, often fresh from confrontation with the riot police and feeling really mean. Tangerine Dream's music reflected their feelings. It was totally free. It cut through all conventions. It was a complete break with the past. They did away with tunes – even tunes were a bourgeois relic of the old society. Everything had to be recreated new and in the present. They were loud, aggressive and heavy.

Tangerine Dream weren't the only underground group in Germany at this time. Most of what are now known as the experimental German rock bands had their birth pangs in the riotous summer of 1968: Jane, Agitation Free, Guru Guru Groove, Time Is Now, Kraan, Can, Ash Ra Tempel, Amon Düül and so on were all formed by people active at that time, most of them involved in the commune movement.

Tangerine Dream played on bills with Gunther Hampel and the great German free jazz sax player Peter Brötzmann. The only song that they did which was not their own was The Pink Floyd's ”Intersteller Overdrive” which they used the opening bars from as a jumping off point for free improvisation.

In September 1968 they played at the Internationalen Essener Song-Tagen, the biggest rock festival in Germany. On the same bill were Frank Zappa, Tim Buckley and the only other big German underground at that time, Amon Düül.

By this time Lanse Hapshash had been replaced by the Swedish jazz drummer Sven Johannson. They were beginning to reach a wider audience but in March 1969 the group split up. Volker Hombach left and is now a cameraman for Fassbinder. The others wandered off and Edgar got in a Liverpool drummer called Paul and a Dutch bass player.

This new lineup was shortlived. In fact it held together for only about four months during which time they did a small TV soundtrack before, running completely out of money and disbanding.

”I thought all the tine about experimental music. It was OK with rock music but I wasn't involved with just doing songs.”

It was in 1969 that Steve Jolliffe first met Edgar. Steve had been playing in Switzerland in 1968 with a group called The Joint. Also in The Joint was Richard Davis who went on to found Supertramp. While in The Joint Steve wrote the score for the movie ”The Happening”.

Though he was a self-taught musician, the director of “The Happening” suggested that he should go to Berlin to take the test to enter the Berlin Music Conservatory as a pianist. When he joined the Conservatory, he was the first person that they had ever accepted who could not read music.

He studied until 1969 and then left, after having met Edgar Froese in an electronic music studio. He joined Tangerine Dream, playing electric flute, and stayed until 1970.

Tangerine Dream was at that time a trio of drums, electric flute and with Edgar on guitar. Steve left to join the much more physical band Steamhammer.

In November, 1969, Edgar met Klaus Schultz. Together with Konrad Schnitzler they rented a factory floor and, using a two-track Revox, they made an experimental tape. Edgar played guitar and organ, Klaus was on drums and Conny Schnitzler on cello, violin and flute. They also used a cashregister with a contact mike on it. They smashed glasses and created all kinds of other soundeffects. They were getting closer to what Edgar wanted.

They took the tape to Rolf Kaiser's Ohr-Musik record company in Berlin and, strangely enough, they said ”OK. It's got no commercial chance but we'll take you. ”In fact Rolf-Ulrich Kaiser had already written about Tangerine Dream in his ”Das Buch Der Neuen Pop Music” which first appeared in 1969 and introduced Zappa, the Fugs, Dylan and the US West Coast underground groups to a wider German audience.

They did concerts all over the German-speaking parts of Europe, particularly in Austria. Then in 1970 Ohr released ”Electronic Meditations” with the Froese, Schultz, Schnitzler lineup. Their first album and the raw influences of Zappa and the Pink Floyd can still be felt among their own craziness.

Klaus Schultz left, going on to work with Ash Ra Tempel and then make a series of solo albums some of which are released in the UK by Virgin.

Early in 1971 Edgar met Christophe Franke (born in April 4, 1942) who was then playing with Agitation Free. Christophe had a reputation as one of the best young jazz drummers in Germany. He had studied with the Strasbourg Percussion Ensemble and done a six month experimental course at Nancy in France in which equal numbers of musicians and theatrical people discussed the relationship between music and the modern theatre. Agitation Free was a seminal group on the
German scene – as well as giving Christophe to Tangerine Dream it also provided members of Ash Ra Tempel and the short lived Timewind.

Christophe first saw Tangerine Dream playing at a little studio for experimental music in Berlin. ”They were making experiments with instruments and also with visuals with pictures and exhibitions.” It looked good to Christophe.
Edgar, Christophe and Conny Schnitzler did TV work and played at the Arts Lab in Vienna (this was another of the European imports from London, being based on the one in London). Then Konrad left.

He was replaced by Steve Schroyder and with him on organ they recorded ''Alpha Centauri”. ''Alpha Centauri” was their first really big success. It sold between 15 and 20,000 copies, which in Germany at that time and for that type of music, was a very good sale. It was recorded in engineer Dieter Dierks studio in Koeln and included on it two guest musicians: Udo Dennebourg on flute and Roland Paulyck on synthesizer. Then Steve Schroyder left.

They had-a number of people on organ before the line-up finally settled down.
Edgar looked around the clubs in Berlin until he finally found Peter Baumann.


Peter was playing organ with a rock band called The Ants, but left to join Tangerine Dream. With this lineup they cut ”Zeit”, their first double album, and at about the same time, early 1972, they recorded their first single “Ultima Thule Parts I and II” – a rock single with a fairly strong early Pink Floyd influence. Edgar described it to me: ”It’s about dope”. It has a lot of hard attacking energy and is in complete contrast to ”Zeit”. Collectors are now paying up to £10 a copy for it.

”Zeit” – Largo in four movements – had a number of guest musicians on it. Steve Schroyder returned to play organ, giving Peter more time to work with his VCS3 synthesizer. Florian Fricke from the group Popol Vuh played moog on one track and there were four cello players. This is the first time that Monique and Edgar's son Jerome makes an appearance on an album sleeve.

In June 1972, Tangerine Dream played at the Ossiach Festival. This was the last time they were to use conventional instruments: organ, guitar, drums. The festival was recorded and released as a double album by BASF Records as ”Ossiach Live”. The Tangs' track is called ”Oscillator Planet Concert”.

Then came ”Atem”, the last record that they did with Ohr-Musik. It was at this time that an unexpected new factor began to influence their career. Without it they might still be as obscure as many other German bands are to the British audiences.
They got their first telephone call from John Peel in November 1973. He had already written Edgar a letter – just a simple note saying that he was sitting in a hotel somewhere out in the country listening to records and that he just thought that he would write and let them know that he liked their music. That was all. One month later Monique Froese picked up the telephone and it was Peel again – saying the same thing. It was John who gave the group their underground reputation in Britain by talking about them. Playing their records on his programme, and finally by making ''Atem” his album of the year, six months after it had been released. They were probably better known in Britain than in their homeland. Many Germans thought that they were a British group.

They signed with a British record company – Virgin Records.

February 20, 1974 ”Phaedra” was released. Despite virtually no airplay, despite being their first British release and being a German band still living in Germany, the album reached the Top Ten. John Peel's programme had prepared an audience for it. Tangerine Dream made a soundtrack recording for the Chichester Festival production of “Oedipus Tyrannus” but the music was used unsympathetically and the results were disastrous.

The success of ''Phaedra” led to the group appearing in Britain. Their first British concert was at the Victoria Palace Theatre on June 16, 1974.

Their careers now shifted into top gear, albums and tours appear thick and fast in the chronology. On June 21st, 1974 Edgar released his first solo album, ”Aqua” which used the revolutionary new Artificial Head recording system invented by Gunther Brunschen. Edgar had been working on the album from November 1973 until March 1974 in Berlin. Chris Franke helped out on moog on one of the four tracks.

They finished off 1974 with a huge tour, doing twenty dates in Britain from November 26 until December 2nd and premiering their new videosynthesizer at a Rainbow concert. On December 13th they did the first of their cathedral concerts, designed to utilize the wonderful acoustics of such buildings and to make each concert into something a bit more than just a gig – more of a memorable event – for both the audience and themselves. Unfortunately 6,000 people crammed themselves into a medieval building which only holds 2,000 and the result was chaos – leading to international outrage.


January 1975 saw them back at Virgin's record studio The Manor set in the countryside near Oxford. This is where they recorded ”Phaedra” and now they were recording ”Rubycon ”. ”Phaedra” went gold in Australia and so they did a three week tour there in March.

”Rubycon” was released on March 21st and was an even greater success than ''Phaedra” . They sold out the Roval Albert Hall on April 2nd and in August they were special guests at the Orange Festival, held in the Roman amphitheatre in Orange in Southern France. Here they tried-out the new
equipment that they had bought with the money which came with the success of their album.

On September 14th they headlined the French Communist Party-sponsored ”Fete de I'Humanite” north of Paris. A crowd of 30,000 attended the concert which opened a French tour.

Through June and July Edgar had been working on a second solo album in Berlin and on September 28th ”Epsilon In Malaysian Pale ” was released, showing Edgar in a very lyrical and romantic mood.

From October 4 until the 23rd they did a twelve-date sell-out tour of Britain including three cathedral concerts: Coventry, Liverpool and York Minster. Tony Palmer filmed the Coventry Cathedral performance and it was shown on BBC-TV one year later.

The tapes from their British and French tours were examined and a certain amount of overdubbing done down at The Manor and Tangerine Dream's first live album was ready to go. ''Ricochet” was released on November 28th. It too entered the British charts. Christoph Franke described the record to me at the time: “We had to edit because the tapes of the concerts they are much too long to use in one context. So we had to hear horrible forty or fifty hours of music – kilometers of tapes – to find the most important parts of our concerts, the most typical things of us, typical of the last tour. And we are quite satisfied. We are very satisfied with the result. ”

From December until the end of February Tangerine Dream toured extensively doing concerts in Austria, Switzerland, Germany, France, Spain and Belgium and then in March of this year, began another unique project.

William Friedkin, director of ”The French Connection” and ”The Exorcist” had become a fan of their music. He proposed that they make the soundtrack for his next film. But this was not to be just an ordinary movie soundtrack. He wanted them to make the soundtrack before shooting actually began so that he could shoot in relation to the music. He had special speakers built with a crossover perfectly matched to play Tangerine Dream's music. They recorded it and Virgin Records released the soundtrack album in 1977.

In the meantime, as the result of negotiations with Virgin Records, their early albums began to be re-issued by Virgin: first “Zeit” which had previously only been available on import and then ”Alpha Centauri” and ”Atem” packaged together as a double. These had previously been issued by Polydor.

The Tangs did concerts in Manchester, Brighton and the Royal Albert Hall before touring Italy and Yugoslavia in June. Back in Berlin, they began work on their next album ”Stratosfear”, a radical departure from their previous albums it used recognisable instruments and recognisable melodies: piano, harpsichord, guitar and mouth-organ – were all there. There was even a snatch of the ”Moonlight Sonata” before Edgar improvised on it. It was the mouth-organ which seemed the most obtrusive to me. I asked Edgar about it: ”...I wanted a natural sound to make it sound more human. I was driving through Berlin and I saw a harmonica in the window of a music store and bought it. Everybody laughed about it but it really works…” He leaned forward and confided to me:

”Now I can tell the truth. My real love is the blues. I have all their records – Lightening Hopkins, Muddy Waters... They are my real love.”
”Blues is the point where everything came from. I think The Greeks, 2000 years ago, they played the blues. It's just trying to explain your life by music…”


To promote ''Stratosfear” in the USA, Tangerine Dream toured through March and April, 1977, bringing their European heavy metal to some of the best venues in North America including New York's prestigious Avery Fisher Hall. The majority of the concerts were complete sell-outs with tickets changing hands for up to $20.00 even though it was extremely unusual, if not unique, for a European band to make its first US tour as a headline act instead of as support. The Spring tour was also the first time that they used Laserium.

1977 saw a solo album for Peter Baumann called ”Romance'76” and rumours spread and were confirmed and denied that Peter was leaving the group. He wanted to spend more time working on his own projects in Berlin whereas at this point in Tangerine Dream's career, it was obvious that a heavy touring schedule was the order of the day.

A summer tour of the USA followed, combined with more rumours of Peter leaving the band however it wasn't until late in 1977 – that he finally made the break leaving Edgar and Christophe to find new members…

Steve Jolliffe, who had left T-Dream to join Steamhammer, wrote to Edgar in the Autumn and the two men came into contact again. Steve had been very busy during his time away. He had stayed with Steamhammer for eighteen months, during which time he wrote half of their album ”Steamhammer Mark II”. It was also during his time with them that he found out that the National Film School in London was providing grants for people to experiment with film and music.

Steve got more and more involved with films, particularly with animation and superimposition techniques, until by the end of 1976 he was working almost entirely with films and had written the music for several privately sponsored films.
In 1976 he built himself a small studio and concentrated on writing music for himself then, when Peter Baumann left the group. He was approached by Edgar who suggested that he might like to join them.

The other new member was drummer Klaus Krieger . .. Klaus had always lived in Berlin and first met Edgar back in 1962. He first began playing drums in 1965 but between 1969 and 1972 he combined this with his graphic art and design studies at Berlin Art School.

After completing his studies he decided to become a professional musician and moved to the Balearic Islands off Spain playing mainly with American musicians in the bars and clubs of Ibiza. He stayed there from 1972 until 1974 when he returned to Berlin.

He rented a factory flat together with six other guys. The people living there were all involved with the arts and the loft was always filled with music and art and sculpture. Stimulated by the surroundings his interest in sculpture led him to build his own drum set. The set he uses is completely hand built and incorporates some very special features.

He has always been in the friendship circle of Tangerine Dream from their very earliest days but it was in 1976 that he and Edgar first worked together and that was on Edgar's solo album ”Ages”. It was because of his experience of working with him then that Edgar decided that he would be a good addition to Tangerine Dream.

The lineup was now the present quartet: Edgar Froese, Christophe Franke, Klaus Krieger and Steve Jolliffe. The music changed accordingly, the biggest departure from the norm being vocals, written and sung by Steve Jolliffe. They entered Audio Studios in Berlin in January 1978 and came up with ”Cyclone ” .



LASERIUM
It is once again a pleasure for Laser Images Inc., the producers 6f LASERIUM, to provide the live laser effects for the astounding TANGERINE DREAM. The success of the 1977 tour verifies the magical combination of TANGERINE DREAM and LASERIUM.
LASERIUM, the original Cosmic Laser Concert, LASERIUM II and LASEROCK have been experienced by over 5,000,000 people in the United States, Canada, Europe and Japan. The first LASERIUM concert was performed just over four years ago in Los Angeles, and now LASERIUM is featured live in 15 cities.
The laser effects you experienced are produced live by a laserist. The LASERIUM projector uses a one-watt Krypton gas laser as its light source, and refracts the tiny beam into four primary colors which travel through a series of optics to emerge as laser snowflakes or cloud formations suspended in space. This LASERIUM projector was especially designed for TANGERINE DREAM, and the custom made rear projection screen enables the live laser images to appear three-dimensional.
Ivan Dryer, 39, creator of LASERIUM and President of Laser Images Inc., has long been an admirer of TANGERINE DREAM. A well-known experimental and documentary film maker, Dryer wrote, edited, directed or photographed over 40 films during his 12-year career. He also produced ”Laserimage,” the earliest feature film comprised exclusively of laser effects. During the filming of Laserimage, ” Dryer recognized that the film medium did not adequately portray laser imagery. It was then that the LASERIUM concept was first conceived.
The corporate headquarters for Laser Images Inc. staff of 100 are located in Los Angeles. As the forerunner in the laser entertainment industry, Laser Images Inc. will continue to present the LASERIUM concept, produce special effects and introduce an innovative Dome Theater Complex, in which the interior spherical projection surface will be the largest in the world.
Ivan Dryer and the staff of Laser Images Inc. hope that you enjoy these laser effects created especially for TANGERINE DREAM.



DISCOGRAPHY

Tangerine Dream:
Electronic Meditation – Brain Records [German import]
Alpha Centauri/Atem – Virgin Records VD2504
Zeit – Virgin Records VD2503
Phaedra – Virgin Records V2010
Rubycon – Virgin Records V2025
Ricochet – Virgin Records V2044
Stratosfear – Virgin Records V2068
Encore – Virgin Records VD2506
Cyclone – Virgin Records V2097


Solo albums:

Edgar Froese:
Aqua – Virgin Records V2016
Epsilon In Malaysian Pale – Virgin Records V2040
Macula Transfer – Brain Records [German import]

Peter Baumann:

Romance '76 – Virgin Records V2069



======== The tour programme can also be downloaded as a PDF. ========

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