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Tangerine Dream - Zeit CD (album) cover


Tangerine Dream


Progressive Electronic

3.64 | 357 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
3 stars No tunes, not even a hint of one. No evidence of a beat. Instead, layers of drone. Droning cellos, droning synths, droning organs, droning guitars, with gradual droning crescendos and droning fade-outs. Droning noise experiments. No, this isn't the year 2000, and it's not a review of GODSPEED YOU BLACK EMPEROR (add exclamation mark in position of your choice). It's 1972, it's TANGERINE DREAM, and it's the sprawling double album 'Zeit'. Sorry, GODSPEED, it's all been done before.

If modern rock music can be compared to the drama of a thunderstorm or ocean waves crashing on the shore, this album is a still pond in winter with cold stars winking and the Northern Lights flickering overhead. 'Zeit' is uncompromising avant-garde ambience with a cold, German edge. The majority of proggers (let alone people) will hate this, a minority will respect it and a few hardy souls will love it - just like an extended holiday north of the Arctic Circle, perhaps. There's nothing to do but allow the unchanging beauty to seep in.

If you don't have the patience for that, stay at home.

Ambient music can often mistakenly be thought of as 'background' music, to have playing while thinking of something else. Nothing could be further from the truth, or more injurious to the listening experience. Ambient music should be listened to with one's full attention, the mind totally engaged in bringing imagination to the music. At the risk of sounding new agey, the mind alters the music, and the music alters the mind. 'Zeit' must be engaged with. Simply 'playing it in the background' - akin to never leaving your suite at Hotel Borg in Reykjavik - is not enough.

This is brave, this is genius, this is borderline comedy, this is insanity. It's either one star or five, so I'll split the difference.

russellk | 3/5 |


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