For a while, I received download promos, from the German, melodic electronic label, Mellow Jet. I did not review all of them. But one of the albums that has recently left an everlasting impression is Moab by Erez Yaary.
When I choose to include this album on this Tangerine Dream blog, the reason is a longer cover version, as well as inspirations and themes, originally created by the Berlin ensemble, repeatedly popping up.
The main part of the album is ”Moab” in its two parts. Already from the beginning, with its slurry, phased drone, and touches of mellotron, we are in antique dreamland. A chord change later, we are suddenly back in 1982 on the Logos tour, where authentic paraphrases on a fracture from ”One Night In Romania” (The Keep) are quite significant. Grand piano a la Force Majeure doubles the TD effect with a certain strength and emotion. Five minutes in, ”Moab Part 1” has really set the pace. With a synthetic cello riff, and all sorts of recognizable sounds and harmonisations, more and more layers are gradually added to the cake, a lot of TD connaisseurs have acquired a taste for. It is, however, not a shameless copy, but a passionate versioning, that also has a character of the more orchestral side to Vangelis. Anyone can program a sequencer today, but to piece long suites together, after the right ideal, still requires extraordinary skills. What makes ”Moab Part 1” sublime, are the additions and subtractions, that creates the dynamics such a sixteen minute long track should contain. In the best spirit from the vinyl age, there is a great emphasis on progression, and a proper amount of moods are met, before the groove is locked.
”Moab Part 2” begins on a sinister note, with synthetic brass overload and fake strings. A setup which electronic enthusiasts probably prefer, instead of the real deal. A ”triangle” marks the pulse, and a more serious sounding, but bell-like electronics find its place. The serious and static tone is more Picture Music era Klaus Schulze than Tangerine Dream. But it is awesome that Erez Yaary also show the other side of the story. It gives the album, as a whole, a larger dynamic range. The bassonish lead instrument, which is particularly well chosen, takes the Schulze-like atmosphere into ”Betrayal”, which we know as the theme from Sorcerer. Three minutes before collapse, the track gets a steady structure with a programmed drum track. A guiding melody leads us into a particularly well constructed amalgamation of Italo Disco and Berlin School. In this case, I dare to use the term genius.
Track three, ”Desert” is very serious. Candidating horror movie material. A violent note regular strikes down. What we need, is only the whistling mono noise, we know from the heyday of VHS tapes, in order to make it really creepy. It can be compared to Tangerine Dream soundtracks like Strange Behavior or The Keep. A little melody is introduced in the last third, but it doesn't outweigh one iota of the sinister atmosphere.
”Red Logos” is the cover version. With a hazy, psychedelic build-up to the section with the sampled - and here stolen at broad daylight - ”Wake up!” (alternatively transcribed as ”Wanker!”), is created a personal rendition of a work many electronic performers have scratched their heads in awe to. How it is possible to create such amazing synthesizer music, like TD could in 1982, one can only find out, by trying to recreae it oneself. Conclusively, there might be used an overload of minor chords, but nevertheless, it is a fine, fine cover version. In the jpeg of my promo copy, the decency to have credited Franke, Froese and Schmoelling should have been showed. No damn way, Erez Yaary has composed all the music himself.
Well then. Fifth track "11 11 11" has a measured Dream Mixes identity before it is replaced by Exit-like melancholy and Vangelis-ish mawkishness. Quite good, too.
Final track is high octane midi electro and totally misplaced. Nevertheless, the majority of the music on Moab is really excellent. So, after all, it is not impossible to recreate the sound Tangerine Dream that invented, and make great art out of it. Moab is a magnificent example thereof.