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Tangerine Dream - Atlantic Bridges CD (album) cover


Tangerine Dream

Progressive Electronic

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2 stars Not a compelate waste of time, but do you really need a dozen recent Dreams divorced from their original concepts? The band's label, TDI, released Walls and Bridges in 1999, featuring selections from Lily on the Beach, Melrose, Turn of the Tides, Tyranny of Beauty, etc. Fine in a non-election year when nobody's running, but TDI also trumped out film compilations, live albums and original releases to the tune of ten or more in 1999 alone. In such crowded company, Atlantic Bridges naturally gets pushed to the back of the room, Mars Polaris to the front. So bad timing costs them one imaginary star, a second falls for failing to correctly label this as a compilation on the outside of the container. They're not remixes so far as I can tell (the recording levels are louder than the originals, which initially threw me). It's possible TDI tweaked the recordings slightly in order to sidestep licensing issues, just as possible they bought the licensing fair and square and were interested in making their money back. Either way, Atlantic Bridges is superfluous product, a bridge to the recent past where a perfectly paved road already exists. And if you're thinking this is a good way to get your feet wet in their wecent work, keep your socks on. You'll get more out of hearing Turn of the Tides or Optical Race in their entirety than sampled here. In my mind, releases like Atlantic Bridges represent the double-edged sword of CD technology; the cheaper the effort, the cheaper the sentiment. With MP3 technology, compilations like this should go the way of the 8-track as listeners build their own bridges to the past.
Report this review (#114936)
Posted Monday, March 12, 2007 | Review Permalink
Easy Livin
Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
3 stars A smooth crossing

"Atlantic bridges" is the first of two compilations of material taken from Tangerine Dream's Melrose period in the late 1980's and first half of the 90's. Unfortunately, there is no indication on the sleeve that it is a compilation, giving the misleading impression that this and the following "Atlantic walls" are new works. The source albums include "Optical Race", "Lily on the Beach", "Melrose", "Rockoon", "Turn of the Tides", "Tyranny of Beauty" (1995) "Dream Mixes I & II" and one track from "Timesquare (Dream Mixes Vol. 2)".

These albums are to be plundered on a regular basis for compilations, for some reason there are many more collections with tracks such as these than of the band's earlier period. I suspect this is due to TDI music, the band's official in house label apparently now owning the copyright to these albums but not to those on Virgin etc.

The albums are rather tame affairs when compared with the band's early work, devoid of the experimentation and pioneering sounds which made the Tangs a band to be admired and revered. They tend to be smooth, bordering on the ambient, and sailing ever closer to the new age style which Rick Wakeman found so alluring around the same time. Titles such as "Long Island sunset", "Paradise cove" and "Turn of the tides" give a good idea what to expect.

My version of this and the accompanying "Atlantic Walls" is a re-release on the Noble Price label. The packaging is truly appalling, with no details of the albums the tracks come from, of the band members, or even of the year of release. The sleeve illustration is of a lot of coloured boxes, with not a bridge or a picture of the Atlantic Ocean in sight. I am at a loss therefore to explain the title other than to assume that it is to do with the Melrose Avenue, Los Angeles studio connection vs. German roots of the band.

Report this review (#204435)
Posted Friday, February 27, 2009 | Review Permalink

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