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Tangerine Dream - Under Cover - Chapter One CD (album) cover


Tangerine Dream

Progressive Electronic

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1 stars An album of Top-40 covers...from Tangerine Dream? An even better question might be: Why not? But the answer to the second question should be obvious after hearing only a few tracks. The project apparently began as a backstage joke. Expecting fans to pay for such a feeble punch line wasn't, however, very funny.

Some of the song selections almost make sense, at least on paper. Tangerine Dream covering PINK FLOYD ('Wish You Were Here') could have provided a fitting homage to one of Edgar Froese's earliest Space Rock role models. And Tangerine Dream playing KRAFTWERK ('The Model') should have been a slam dunk: one pioneering elektronische musik group paying tribute to another.

But the results are almost unrecognizable, and not in a good way. Nobody wants a cover song to be a karaoke copy of the original. But to render such lightweight commercial material even more insubstantial suggests a total collapse of aesthetic perception, unless the joke runs even deeper than I thought. The soft-focus schmaltz in every arrangement carries a hint of satire, with each song layered in enough synthetic sugar to frighten Hansel and Gretel. Need your fix of musical aspartame? Check out the soporific reading of the Eagles hit 'Hotel California'. Or the bombastic club mix of the Chris Isaak ballad 'Wicked Games'. Or the disco-fried 'Norwegian Wood'.

It can't be easy keeping track of Tangerine Dream's mammoth discography. But after a bite of this plastic turkey even diehard fans may not even bother anymore. File the effort in the 'What Were They Thinking' box: the porcelain one, with the tankful of water. And if it was truly intended as a parody of pop music fashions, the biggest laugh might be the album's ominous sub-title: 'Chapter One', a promise (or a threat) of more to come.

Report this review (#1079309)
Posted Wednesday, November 20, 2013 | Review Permalink
Tarcisio Moura
1 stars There was some talking at the ProgBrasil forum about this album. And quite some praising. So I was curious about it. Some people went as far as saying that TDīs version of Kraftwerkīs The Model was better than the original one. Well, after I got the album and give several spins, all I can say is that Iīm really disappointed. Iīm not a electronic music fan, nor have been following TDīs career through the years (but, with such gigantic discography, who is?). Most of what I heard was some 70īs releases like Phaedra and Stratosphere, plus a few live DVDs which I liked. So I was expecting some instrumental work, maybe with very different, bold arrangements, leading some songs to become almost unrecognizable.

Thatīs not what I heard: although there are some nice synths here and there, all are tracks have vocals and the arrangements are simply mediocre most of the time. None of the tracks steer much away from the original and the voices donīt add much either. Itīs unbelievable that such seasoned electronic expert like Edgar Froese did approve such dud. Ok, some moments are enjoyable, like the opener Cry Little Sister and Precious, although the feeling is that Iīm listening to Depeche Mode, not TD. And tracks like Hotel California and Pink Floydīs Wish You Were Here are a very poor choice of material and they sound extremely cheesy. The aforementioned The Model does have an interesting arrangement with piano and flute, but the original is way better than this one.

In the end I really donīt know what was the meaning of this album. I really wish they had done something more original and electronic using the simple melodies as a basis. Not this time. This one is just a curio at best.

Rating: one star, this is not even for fans of TD. For completionists only.

Report this review (#1288394)
Posted Monday, October 6, 2014 | Review Permalink

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