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Vangelis - Albedo 0.39 CD (album) cover

ALBEDO 0.39

Vangelis

 

Prog Related

3.67 | 128 ratings

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Fitzcarraldo
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars 'Pulstar' starts off the album with fast, pulsing synthesizer to introduce a great tune with lots of different electronic sounds woven into it. It's catchy and very upbeat, and the reason I bought this album. Real whistle-along stuff. This track and 'Alpha' were used on Carl Sagan's Cosmos TV series in the 1980s. What a perfect fit for the music.

The tracks contain all sorts of pleasing synthesizer melodies and soundscapes, from the oriental sounding to sounds strongly evoking outer space (the sound clip of Apollo astronauts during a moon walk adding to that image). This is different to the kind of sound produced by TANGERINE DREAM, though, as the pieces here are often more like rock music or orchestral music, albeit still maintaining a very electronic feel. There are some pure cosmic sweeps in places, too. I enjoy the numerous pleasant tinkling sounds throughout, plus the various sound clips (in addition to the Apollo astronauts you can hear the Speaking Clock, the dialling of an old style pulse-dialling telephone, and what sounds like a ratchet).

With track titles like 'Pulstar', 'Mare Tranquillitatis', 'Sword Of Orion' and so on, the theme of the album is obvious. The album ends with the reciting of various physical constants of the Earth, including its albedo (the fraction of incident light reflected by a planet), which in the case of the Earth in 1976 was. 0.39.

This is a very enjoyable album. I find it particularly satisfying because it is reminiscent of the purely cosmic soundscapes of the well-known German electronic artists but also incorporates melody in many places. For the keyboard fan there's plenty to please: from ecclesiastical-sounding organ to swathes of synthesizer sounding orchestral one minute then like rock the next, with fast stabbing of keys and punchy drumming. VANGELIS used electronics to such good effect, from emulating the pealing of bells to the pulsing and swooping sounds so evocative of space. The track 'Albedo 0.39' is so relaxing and a great way to end the album after the frenzy of 'Nucleogenesis (Part Two)'. In my opinion this album rates at least 4 stars (Excellent addition to any progressive music collection). Highly recommended.

Fitzcarraldo | 4/5 |

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