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Tangerine Dream

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Tangerine Dream Ultima Thule album cover
3.98 | 27 ratings | 5 reviews | 33% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, released in 1971

Songs / Tracks Listing

Side One
1. Ultima Thule (Part 1) (3:25)
Side Two
2. Ulima Thule (Part 2) (4:22)

Total Time 7:47

Line-up / Musicians

- Edgar Froese / guitar, bass, keyboards
- Christopher Franke / percussion, keyboards
- Steve Schroeder / keyboards

Releases information

7" LP Ohr ST-OS-57.006 (1971)
7" LP Ohr P D U P.A. 1101 P. 10892 (1975)

Thanks to PROGMAN for the addition
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TANGERINE DREAM Ultima Thule ratings distribution

(27 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(33%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(30%)
Good, but non-essential (33%)
Collectors/fans only (4%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

TANGERINE DREAM Ultima Thule reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Modrigue
4 stars "Ultima Thule" by TANGERINE DREAM can be regarded as a cross-over between their two previous albums: the psychedelic rock experimental "Electronic Meditation" and the cosmic synthetizer driven "Alpha Centauri". Both tracks feature top space rock melodies which make me think of ancient civilizations collapsing.

The first part starts with Froese's angry guitar until the mellotron introduces the melody, then followed by a punchy psychedelic hard rock riff sometimes remiscent of PINK FLOYD's "A Saucerful of Secrets" and announcing the newt album, "Atem". The second part is more relaxing, but still rocks... It's a pity the tracks are too short, their sound is unique, this EP could have been easily prolongated to a LP. This is the only reason I give it 4 stars and not 5. Highly recommended to all psychedelic / space rock lovers.

NOTE: This EP is now included as bonus tracks on the 2011 Esoteric Release of "Alpha Centauri".

Review by philippe
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars Almost totally unknown from a large audience, this Tangerine Dream's short EP represents the band at their most freak out rocking moment. It's structurally built with the same ideas & ingredients exposed in their first "Electronic Meditation"; consequently we can hear absolutely gorgeous psychedelic noises with lot of fuzzed out guitars and electric spacious organs , featuring an obvious sense of improvisation. Side A is an amazing "cosmic" krautrock classic, including aggressive moody guitar riffs, dreamy like organs. It's made as an instrumental psych jam with massive, wonderful spacey arrangements. Side B delivers a more "meditative" composition, an astral voyage throw ecstatic & enigmatic mellotron sequences. The tension goes higher at the end with a true cosmic, mystical musical climax. Awesome and so recommended! It's just hard to believe that Froese has been recorded so many aseptic electronic naiveties from the 80's to nowadays. Ultima Thule is TD very best with the ambitious & macrocosmic "Electronic meditation", "Alpha Centauri", "Zeit" and "Atem".
Review by Eetu Pellonpaa
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars This neat vinyl single can be found also from some compilations, and it delivers short but in my opinion a really awesome and different suite from Tangerine Dream's collective imagination. The A-side is done with style of the "Electronic Meditation" album, resembling the acid rock aggression familiar from early Ash Ra Tempel recordings, driven by very raw amplified guitar and analog organs, and sharing qualities with instrumental solutions of Pink Floyd's "The Nile Song". The massive symphonic rock vision truly glances upon the mythical northern island with singular grandiosity and divine power. The B-side is then calmer ethereal plane of the single, starting with ambient like floating in vintage sounds, later accompanied by interesting drum rhythms. If you like the early phase of this band and raw krautrock, this vinyl single suits as a great target for a collective item and losing all unnecessary money.
Review by Easy Livin
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
3 stars Get the drums out lads, I've got a real tune for you

Despite the total impenetrability of their early albums, Tangerine Dream decided to go for an assault on the singles charts in early 1972. Consequently, they took a theme from "Fly and collision of comas sola", a track on their second album "Alpha Centauri", and used it as the basis for a new piece in two parts.

Having started to experiment with synthesiser on the album, Edgar Froese decided try out a mellotron too for this recording. Unlike the album tracks of this period, the single has a very defined beat and strong guitar rhythm. In some ways, it is rather like Van Der Graaf Generator's "Theme one", although the melody is less memorable. On the plus side, the way the mellotron dominates the proceedings will please those who feel that instrument is at the very heart of prog.

While mellotron remains the main sound on part 2, the mood us much softer and less aggressive. It is still far more melodic than the early albums though, and actually has a lot in keeping with the band's Virgin years material.

Needless to say, the single did not sell well at all, and is now a highly sought after rarity. The two parts remained stubbornly unavailable until 2002 when Part 1 was included on an expanded re-issue of "Alpha Centauri", with part 2 following on a later Japanese re-issue. Both parts can now be found on the excellent compilation set "Nebulous Dawn".

Review by Warthur
3 stars A single released at around the time of the Alpha Centauri album (and now available as bonus tracks on some recent reissues of that disc), Ultima Thule is essentially a couple of Krautrock riffs on themes lifted from Fly and Collision of Comas Sola from that album. There's drums, guitars, and conventional rock instrumentation aplenty, with synths mainly used for background texture, and the playing tends to be faster and more energetic than Tangerine Dream are customarily known for.

Come to think of it, that might be the failure of the single as a promotional tool for the band - it didn't sound anything like the album it was trying to promote, so even people who did enjoy the single would have no real idea of whether they'd enjoy Alpha Centauri, and the band were sufficiently uncomfortable with playing in such a commercial format that the composition itself isn't really up to much. I wouldn't say it's worth going out of your way to acquire, but as far as bonus tracks go I think the two parts of Ultima Thule do enhance those versions of Alpha Centauri that include them.

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