Tangerine Dream

Tangerine Dream

Founded by the late Edgar Froese, Tangerine Dream is perhaps the premier exponent of "electronic rock" music of the "Berlin School". From their "free-rock" beginnings in the nascent "krautrock" scene to the eventual synthesizer-based trio which signed to Virgin, this German group can take significant credit in introducing synthesizer/sequenced electronic music to most of the Western rock world. At the height of their success - during the mid to late 1970s - the Dream's spacey, pulsing music earned them a tenacious cult following. By the late Seventies, however, line-ups, and more importantly, the formula changed, tilting towards more conventional "rock" music. By the early 1980s, TD was primarily releasing influential soundtrack work, before settling into New Age content by mid-decade.

Formed in Berlin in 1967, the initial line up (on their first release Electronic Meditation) included Edgar Froese, Conrad Schnitzler (cello) and Klaus Schulze (drums). Their compositions, or rather experimental improvisations, had roots in the psychedelia of London albeit with the "krautrock" twist. Electronic Meditation is perhaps a misnomer; traditional instrumentation of organ, drums, guitar, cello, flute were hardly electronic and "freak out jamming" is the more appropriate adjective, reflecting the confluence of Twentieth Century avant-garde music. Both Schnitzler and Schulze would depart after this album, with the latter forming Ash Ra Tempel and going on to become the other major proponent of the "Berlin School". Second album, Alpha Centauri, saw the addition of long-standing member Christopher Franke replacing Schulze, while Peter Baumann would come aboard for Zeit. Although unissued until the mid-1980s, Green Desert was recorded in 1973. The core of Froese, Franke and Baumann would sign to Virgin Records in 1973, and the subsequent release Phaedra would cement their style for years to come. Understated, droning keyboard and guitar melodies intertwined with ambient washes of reverberating electronic textures, utilizing synthesizers and sequencers, was typical of the TD sound. Compositions were long, melodic, pulsing pieces. Michael Hoenig temporarily replaced Baumann for an Australian tour in 1975. One highlight of the Virgin period was Sorcerer, a soundtrack to the film of the same name. After Baumann's departure in 1978, TD experimented with the formula on Cyclone, which saw the addition of Steve Jolliffe, adding vocals and woodwinds and Klaus Krüger on drums. Force Majeure was the classic of this period. Johannes Schmölling would join for Tangram. This line-up remained stable until the mid-1980s, as the group shifted toward more rhythmic textures. The increased emphasis on sequencers and rhythm in the first half of the 1980s divided fans, as did subsequent releases which veered heavily into relatively accessible, uplifting melodies.

After a brief stint with Jive Records from 1984 to 1988, TD signed to Baumann's Private Music label and then the equally New Agey Miramar, fully embracing digital textures and seeking to distance the group from its moody, psychedelic past. Paul Haslinger replaced Schmölling in 1985, and was in turn replaced by Froese's son Jerome Froese in 1990. Franke left in 1987 over creative differences with Froese. After a mid-1990s move to Edgar Froese's own TDI Music label (later renamed Eastgate), TD's reputation as a New Age band became less appropriate - father and son experimented with more modern sounds and revisited elements of past glories - but the group's artist direction remained fairly entrenched in melodic pop-rock territory, with an increased use of acoustic instruments, particularly on stage. With Edgar Froese's death in 2015, the band continues, but with none of its original members.


Tangerine Dream Discography Tracks


Tangerine Dream Electronic Meditation (Album) Ohr, Ohr Japan 1970 Sell This Version
Tangerine Dream Alpha Centauri (Album, Single) Ohr, Ohr Japan 1971 Sell This Version
Tangerine Dream Zeit (Album) Ohr Germany 1972 Sell This Version
Tangerine Dream Atem (Album) Ohr New Zealand 1973 Sell This Version
Tangerine Dream Phaedra (Album) Virgin Canada 1974 Sell This Version
Tangerine Dream Rubycon (Album) Virgin, Virgin Germany 1975 Sell This Version
Tangerine Dream Ricochet (Album) Virgin, Virgin Taiwan 1975 Sell This Version
Tangerine Dream Stratosfear (Album) Virgin US 1976 Sell This Version
Tangerine Dream Music From The Original Motion Picture Soundtrack "Sorcerer" (Album) MCA Records France 1977 Sell This Version
Tangerine Dream Encore (Album) Virgin, Virgin Germany 1977 Sell This Version
Tangerine Dream Cyclone (Album) Virgin Spain 1978 Sell This Version
Tangerine Dream Force Majeure (Album) Virgin, Virgin UK 1979 Sell This Version
Tangerine Dream Tangram (Album) Virgin Canada 1980 Sell This Version
Tangerine Dream Thief (Album) Virgin Taiwan 1981 Sell This Version
Tangerine Dream Exit (Album) Virgin, Virgin Japan 1981 Sell This Version
Tangerine Dream Quichotte (Album) AMIGA German Democratic Republic (GDR) 1981 Sell This Version
Tangerine Dream Logos Live (Album) Virgin Europe 1982 Sell This Version
Tangerine Dream White Eagle (Album) Virgin Finland 1982 Sell This Version
Tangerine Dream Hyperborea (Album) Virgin New Zealand 1983 Sell This Version
Tangerine Dream Wavelength (Original Soundtrack) (Album) Varèse Sarabande US 1983 Sell This Version
Tangerine Dream Poland (The Warsaw Concert) (Album) Jive Electro UK 1984 Sell This Version
Tangerine Dream Firestarter (Music From The Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) (Album) MCA Records US 1984 Sell This Version
Tangerine Dream Flashpoint (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) (Album) EMI America Netherlands 1984 Sell This Version
Tangerine Dream Heartbreakers (Music From The Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) (Album) Virgin Germany 1985 Sell This Version
Tangerine Dream Le Parc (Album) Jive Electro Japan 1985 Sell This Version

Reviews Show All 21 Reviews

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May 1, 2017
Have to agree with Spunkfish that Cyclone is a masterpiece. As he says it gets very little credit from many fans with it having vocals but just give it a chance and it grows on you. MUCH better than some of the later dross that came out when Froese Junior joined the band and made it poppy EM. Another release that gets a minus is Tyger, yet again because of the vocals, but the music quality and minimal vocals add up to a great listen.


April 20, 2017
to me Cyclone is a masterpiece and my fave TD album, yet it gets very little credit from most fans who seem to prefer the much less melodic releases , just goes to show you cant rely on other peoples opinions on whats a good album and what isnt, if i was to listen to other peoples reviews and thoughts on Cyclone i would never have purchased this amazing album


March 28, 2016
Well the best band ever. Particulary like them most between 1973-1988 but some good music was created before 1973 and after that as well. Phaedra, richochet, Encorer, sorcerer, Force majeure, exit, white eagle, logos, firestarter, wavelength, flaspoint, poland, le Parc, underwater sunlight, near dark and the park is mine are especially appreciated by me. Johannes Schmölling and Cristopher Franke added something special to the band that Edgar Froese couldn't do by himself.


December 23, 2015
i own a record on pink wax, with td-1 and td-2 in the runout. no infos on the label, just a picture of three old men on both sides. it also looks like there is only one big session on each side, no split in tracks or such. which TD release is that ?? any help via pm would be appreciated. thnx :)


November 2, 2015
One of my favorite bands which I've followed since John Peel started playing them. I bought everything as it came out and got all the pre Phaedra albums as imports. I've always thought them best live and fondly remember the first time I "saw" them at the Royal Albert Hall and was amazed at how loud they were (I'd never thought to play the albums loudly and still rarely do so) and how they made the music move through the air. I eventually found the Tangerine Tree Project and have all the Trees and Leaves (excepting Leaves Volume 32: Quebec, so if anyone has it on mp3/FLAC can they email me a copy at vorrn707@gmail.com) and recommend these as the best way to hear early TD. My collection continues to grow and I can't wait to hear them post Edgar - RIP - and I suspect that there is a goodly collection of unreleased items awaiting mastering mixing and release. Although their music evolved as the electronic industry evolved, I like it all, but listening to them live is best. Vorrn


December 3, 2014
It's seemingly impossible to discuss TD without comparing eras, although this is occasionally a little unfair, especially given that there aren't many straight cut changes between them.

Like many (possibly most), I hold the Virgin albums in highest esteem, particularly Phaedra, Rubycon, Tangram and Hyperborea. Over their ten years signed to Virgin, their stylistic progression was incredible: something which slowed down considerably shortly after they left. The rest of the '80s saw them ironing out the remaining kinks into the heavily streamlined, poppy sound found throughout the Froese/Haslinger lineup. These albums are much maligned by some, and although they are almost embarrassingly dated in their production, there are plenty of strong compositions waiting under the surface of rigid MIDI programming and harsh FM synths.

The band sort of washed ashore at this point, most tellingly by the fact that Edgar is still using the same synth sounds to this day. Plenty of modern TD pieces could be little more than remastered Haslinger-era tracks. Be it the heavy use of live instrumentation in the '90s, or the 'throw enough shit and some of it'll stick' approach to the modern heavy release schedule, there have been different attempts at hiding the staleness over the past twenty-odd years, although most see through them. There exists a modest sized fanbase who excitedly await everything put out under the TD name (a considerable proportion of the 'Eastgate Years' output is Edgar solo material) and seem to enjoy it, but the general consensus tends to be that although great tracks exist, they are few and far between. Personally, I stick to the Booster releases these days, which give a good representation of the various products and are the nearest thing to the 'an album every year or two' format Edgar would have been wise sticking to.


January 9, 2014
It's fair to say that TD have covered several different styles so you will always have either ones who like or dislike certain periods or just complete anoraks who must have everything and must know everything! It's simple, find what you like and enjoy it ;)


February 12, 2013
Why do 'synth experts' always know so little about Tangerine Dream? ;)


February 5, 2013
edited over 4 years ago
I strongly disagree with the previous poster. While I find nearly all of TD albums great and very enjoyable from between 1974-1983, I'd absolutely leave the "Zeit" out of any listings. Very boring, fantasyless early athmospherics "ambient". I don't understand why did the early TD raises so much attention while there was not much music in those albums (I mean: the pre-1974 era). It's more for the "psycho", flower-power, prog-rock fans. Their "mid-age" from '74-the eighties caused some extraordinary pioneering albums BUT the real-thing comes only after then:

The EXIT is the highlight of the TD. Ask any fans! Incredible, rhythmised, prog electro-pop, very fresh and new. I rate it among the best albums of the genre beside: Kraftwerk-Computer World, Logic System - Logic, Johan Timman - Trip into the body, just to name the bests. Their second best album is:

WHITE EAGLE and every other come afterwards.

By the way, TD. has incredible amount of bootleg live-recordings. I very strongly advise them to be listened! They were the best in live-situations: endless sequencing, very great guitar and synth solos all the entire lenght. Very dramatic, hypnotic soundscapes lead to exstatic solos.

To cut it short: TD is from late 60'-1974 only for prog, psych, ambient, noise and hard-core TD fans.

1974-1979: The classic "mid-age" with analog synths, Moogs and hypnotic sequencings.

1980-ca. 1985: The appearing of the first digital synths and the birth of the automatised electronic music. The birth of their best albums: Exit, and White eagle. Soon they fade away after 1982 and are not able to renew, nor create anything remarkable. Le Parc 2nd. track is their very last great track, and I find one of their best and that's it.

1986- The TD becomes a cheap, cheesy, kitschy, extremely mindless new-age pop-trash. Trash and shit I can name with some of their albums. Pity...

A few technical words about the Tangerine Dream 1970-1985: Now I see, how amatheur they really were. The never made a proper, whistleable melody with the exception of 2-3 cases. Chordchanges? Like at the level of a collage-band. The sound quality of their recordings were almost always trash. The mixing was always horrible. They had absolutely no real rhythmical sense, so the drummachine usage was always extremely bad and badly balanced. As soon as the digital synths and synths with sound-patch memory appeared, they started to giving-up creating their own made sonic-timbres. By the mid '80s they only used factory-preset sounds from the synths and later they minimised the usage of the number of the synths too, so there came the time when they made entire albums on the cheapest and bad sounding Roland synth module(s). But anyway, they almost never made anything really interesting sonic-timbres apart from a few. They had no real mind for that. The Mellotron usage was very typical to them and a listener can easily think that how great achievement was that. No way. The typical Tangerine dream choir/flute/horn/strings/... sounds came from the Mellotron which was the first "preset" instument and the sound couldn't be altered or changed on the instrument and the sounds remained unchanged through the entire history of the Mellotron-era of TD. What they've made on synths were very amatheurish and all approach to the entire producing of music was also but even if so, at the end, the result was sometimes extraordinary. All had a very special mood, an electrifying feeling, an astonishing dreamscape and the birth of the "Berlin-electro, old-school" genre in itself which were never paralelled by anybody other even if there were and even today there are countless efforts for it.

As far as I know, they didn't invented gears but gave comissions for electro-technicians. This is how the legendary PPG was born. I, myself own maybe the very first existing example which is often can be seen by the right hand side of Froese on the concerts 1975-onwards. There are only a few examples exist. The other machine which is in my posession is the later PPG 340/380 large tower with Froese's signature. Only 6 pieces were ever made.

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