This week it is ten years since I first heard Tangerine Dream. Well, listened to, really. I did watch Legend and Risky Business during my childhood, without paying attention to the music. I certainly did that, when I listened to Rubycon for the first time.
I was visiting my older sister during the autumn holiday (week 42), and went to a local second hand shop for vinyls, comics and discarded porn. I had read all the articles in my rock encyclopedias, and felt Tangerine Dream – for some reason – were a top priority band to check out. The shop had a few TD albums in the window display, and the choice fell on the mysteriously looking album with a soft drop hitting some thick liquid, in some creepy bluegreen light.
Once the needle hit the groove, it was an epiphany. I heard impossible music. Music, I initially couldn't even label as music. That murky, almost beatless type of indirect, evil proto-techno, pulled away every prejudice and imagination I had of electronic music in particular.
I even played excerpts of the LP, during a nocturnal alcohol haze, to a friend's answering machine.
It also became the beginning of a long journey of similar experiences. Ricochet and Stratosfear came next, and Force Majeure – for me – is still the best example of recorded music in history. But I haven't been moved by music, in the same way, like the first listening sessions with Rubycon.
Admittedly, these ten years have been over hectic. Money and music wise, I've spent too much on the band. More than is responsible. And too much time, as well. In some respects it actually feels like much more than ten years.
Right now, I play Tangerine Dream on a healthy level, and don't overspend on them. (Well, I haven't really recovered financially from the trip to their latest London concert.)
However, they will always have a special place in my heart, and will remain my favourite band to the day I die.
As for the message on the answering machine? The friend mentioned learned to appreciate the album, and ended up playing in a band with a Coil enthusiast. He recognized some Tangerine Dream in Coil's music, and presented to me Musick to Play in the Dark. Through Tangerine Dream, and some detours, I've come to learn the most amazing music imaginable.
Rubycon and Tangerine Dream changed my life.
Long live Tangerine Dream.
Here's to the next ten years.