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Emma Myldenberger - Tour de Trance  CD (album) cover


Emma Myldenberger


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Honorary Collaborator
4 stars The soundtrack to your daydream

Joviality, peacefulness and hallucinations... All of those are portrayed in Tour De Trance, which might be inferred from the name.

It is not only calm and peace that are conjured through their music. Being a folk band, you'd expect only that. But being as diverse as they are, their music is also rhythmic, catchy and entertaining. It's also as beautiful as can be, haunting even at several points. And indeed, they can induce inner calm with their serene parts. The music in this album has all of those.

Another aspect that adds to the beauty of their sound and to it being special is the combining elements of ethnic music from east and west. The instruments they use help them make this blend. This is a good place to mention the variety of instruments they use which is another reason their music sounds diverse. In their songs and music they swing between more quiet and slow parts to more dynamic and fast tempo, adding more breadth to their compositions. They also have some great catchy and rhythmic tune such as Ein Bi▀chen, where the mandolin gives a great rhythm and the band members sing together, all resulting in a wonderful, cheerful and memorable melody.

A trance might indeed be induced upon you while listening to Regenreigen with its almost 20 minutes of a mesmerizing trip. As it starts, with an eastern flavour (percussion wise) and the mandolin and flute contrast it, giving it a special sound. The music gains speed and power slowly and then diminishes again not leaving this pattern they are playing all the while. The vocals join in, sounding ethereal and the flute then takes center stage, backed up by a mellow sounding violin, and the melody evolves into a slightly different path but not too far away from the starting point. At around 8 minute into the track it picks up pace and goes into another direction entirely, though they later on connect it with the previous part and go back to it as well. This shows how as musicians, they like to develop one idea into several branches; to find more venues out of that main theme, finding more musical places that are related to that original composition. This is too long a piece to describe all of it, but the intricacies that Emma Myldenberger put into their music and the beauty of it, doesn't get bored at all. RAA is another fantastic example to their creativeness and their ability to do magic with their music.

This is an excellent album to sit down and relax to (the atmosphere it spreads is soothing), contemplate with and even sing with in Ein Bi▀chen. If you prefer, it can also be excellent to go to sleep with, or read while it plays. It is excellent music to close your eyes to and fly away with your imagination, making this the soundtrack to your daydream.

For a beautiful, mesmerizing and fun folk album, this is an excellent choice. For those looking, I would definitely try and get the Garden Of Delights re-issue with the bonus track and the informative booklet.

Report this review (#141410)
Posted Monday, October 01, 2007 | Review Permalink
Sean Trane
Prog Folk
4 stars 4.5 stars really!!!!

This second album is the real reason of this group's presence into the rock almanacs or encyclopaedias and into our beloved Archives. After the release of their debut album, the group toured extensively Germany and made trips to Switzerland, Luxembourg and Ireland (several gigs a day over there), and were joined temporarily (actually he just stepped on stage uninvited and stayed) by Israeli percussionist (tabla, mostly) Rammy Mizrachi and he gave the group's original tracks a fairly different sound and direct the band to another direction than trad folk. Around the mid year of 79, the group started recording in their hometown this second album, which would be their definitive statement.

Starting out on the rather Ougenweide-style folky number, Ein Bisschen, that rides on a great banjo line and a myriad of small flutes. Closing the first side of the album is the almost 29-mins Regenreigen (rain round dance), easily the album's tour de Force and tour de France as well as tour de Trance. The lengthy tracks takes through a myriad of climates and rzegions exploring middle ages and more recent jigs, sometimes oscillating between Third Ear Band and East Of Eden Jig-A-Jig. Ranging from mid- Eastern (Arabian) to Indian classic music (though a raga) to semi-Spanish-sounding ambiances and much more, Gullatz's oboe getting a big share of the spotlight.

The flipside is made of three mid-length pieces, the first of which Lenyas Fantasie (Lenyas is Anne Gosslau's daughter pictured in the interfold of the vinyl the community photo) has a definite Spanish-Flamenco slant, coupled with pure chamber music. The Following RAA is obviously the album second highlight, constructed around some strong guitar strumming and tabla/bongo (obviously Rammi's influence) and Topsi's contrabass playing again a Spanish dramatic theme over a raga beat >> lovely chamber music ending too. The 5-mins Hochzeitsnatch (wedding night) starts on dissonant African metallic percussions, before two wind instrument (oboe and clarinet) take over and a steady beat, take on a classical twist before sinking in Aum psalms and full sitar psychedelia and obviously a one shot thing.

The only weird thing (and somewhat quite deceiving, even if the album is an incredibly success artistically and aesthetically) is that Rammi Mizrachi is not part of this album, although he appeared to be so instrumental in developing the album. The bonus tracks are from a Berlin concert prior to TdT's release and give us two "works-in-progress" tracks of the upcoming album and a Grateful Dead reprise and not adding incredible value, but not disserving it either. I would've preferred this track on the debut album instead on this one.

Tour De Trance is indeed one of the most stunning pieces of psychey prog folk with strong medieval tendencies and is considered a classic by connoisseur with every reason to be so. This album would then fill out the group's concerts set lists, with the Regenreigen track being the centrepiece, until the group's end in 81 with Rammy often starring on tables. In the very near future, the great label Garden Of Delights will release a live album of concert of the later period, which if you enjoy this album will most likely a must have for the fans. I know I will jump on at at sight.

Report this review (#156048)
Posted Thursday, December 20, 2007 | Review Permalink
Prog-Folk Team
3 stars From a country more known for kraut rock, electronica, and a profusion of symphonic prog, a fair number of folk influenced groups do emanate. HOELDERLIN and OUGENWEIDE may be the best known of the lot, and were also among the first, although Hoelderlin left behind their roots early on. Cross these in their more reflective moments with a sprig of BROSELMASCHINE and, with the exception of one monster cut, you have the essence of EMMA MYLDENBERGER's "Tour de Trance".

The nearly 20 minutes of "Regenreigen" constitute something of a revolution in European folk prog, touching as it does on the whole continental diaspora from bygone and modern days, as well as Middle Eastern delectables, with superb oboe by Biber Gullatz. Part improvisation and part carefully architected composition, it is alluring but not very bracing, as it rarely shifts more than a third pace, an impeccably cooked repast served lukewarm. "Lenya's fantasie" and "Raa" are essentially a procedural protraction.

"Ein Bisschen" is actually a song more or less, and could have come from "Hoelderlin's Traum", while "Wassensteyn's hochzeitnacht" invokes POPOL VUH at times, which can't be a bad thing. Ultimately it and its live bonus version, along with the additional live bonus of "I Know You Rider", which clearly enunciates Myldenberger's lineage back to the original jam band, are my personal favourites, which unfortunately tells you more about me than about the album. The closing add-on is the purely foot stomping hoedown "Stromberger Siebensprung"

Because the extended compositions will have appeal to certain select listeners - you know who you are - in my tour-trumped trance I see three stars.

Report this review (#219400)
Posted Monday, June 01, 2009 | Review Permalink

EMMA MYLDENBERGER Tour de Trance ratings only

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  • 5 stars [email protected]
  • 2 stars [email protected]
  • 5 stars flogger77
  • 5 stars hristy (hristian marinov)
  • 3 stars lord777lord7 (Kuehne, Axel)
  • 4 stars Voyteck
  • 3 stars Apsalar (k)
  • 4 stars freewheeler (Sergei Komarov)
  • 4 stars jsBah (I)
  • 4 stars first_light
  • 3 stars gegece (gustavo garate)
  • 4 stars sauromat (alexander)

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