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PROGRESSIVE ELECTRONIC

A Progressive Rock Sub-genre


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Progressive Electronic definition

Born in the late 60's after the expansion of avant-gardist, modern, post-modern and minimalist experimentation, the progressive electronic movement immediately guides us into a musical adventure around technologies and new possibilities for composition. As an author or a searcher, the musician often creates his own modules and electronic combinations, deciding his own artistic and musical action. The visionary works of Stockhausen, Subotnick, John Cage ("concrete" music, electro-acoustic experimentation), La Monte Young, Steve Reich, Terry Riley (minimal, micro-tonal music) express a vision of total reconstruction in the current musical world. Luminous works such as "A Rainbow in Curved Air" (1967) and "Silver Apples of the Moon" (1967) bring an inflexion on opened forms and new ways to explore the essence and the physical aspects of sounds (through time and space). "Static" textures, collages & long running sounds, the power of technology previously exposed in ambitious classical works will have a major impact in "popular" electronic music.

After the artisan & innovative uses of magnetic tapes, feedback, microphones, etc., the instrumental synthesis, the elaboration of global sound forms and the psycho-acoustic interactions will be sublimated thanks to the launch of the analog synth. A great improvement happened in 1964 with the appearance of the first modular synthesiser (Moog). This material (or "invention") brings the answer to the technological aspirations of many musicians, mainly after the release of the popular "Switched on Bach" (Walter Carlos) and Mother Mallard's portable masterpiece (pieces composed between 1970-73).

At the beginning of popular essays in electronica, the pioneering technologies (in term of recording and sound transmission) will not be abandoned. For instance, "Tone Float" (1969) by Organisation (pre-Kraftwerk), "Zwei Osterei" & "Klopzeichen" (1969-70) by Kluster and "Irrlicht" (1972) by Klaus Schulze will carry on the domestication of the electric energy and the use of refined harmoniums, organs and echo machines. During the 70's decade, European groups & musicians such as Eno, Kraftwerk and Tangerine Dream will make their name in the music industry thanks to an abundant use of analog synthesisers and original electronic combinations. After weird, mysterious experimentation on conventional acoustic & electric instruments, Kraftwerk enjoyed huge success in popular music thanks to "mechanical electronic pop music". "Trans Europe Express" (1977) and "The Man Machine" (1978) figure as two commercial classics. The German spacey electronic scene launched by Tangerine Dream with their outstanding "Alpha Centauri" (1971) and Cluster "I" & "II" (1971-72) will have echoes everywhere, starting from the Berlin underground electronic scene (the Berlin School) with Klaus Schulze ("Timewind" 1974), Michael Hoenig ("Departure from the Northern Wasteland" 1978), Ashra ("New Age of Earth" 1976), Conrad Schnitzler's buzz-drones and repetitive electronics ("Zug", "Blau", Gold" 1972-74) . After several innovations always from Germany we notice the dark, doomy atmospheric manifests of Nekropolis (Peter Frohmader) in "Le culte des Goules" (1981), Asmus Tietchens in his colourful and engaged "Biotop" (1981) and the semi-ambient "Hermeneutic Music" (1988) by Lars Troschen (sound sculptor and synthesist).

In France, the "hypnotic" and "propulsive" electronic essays of Heldon ("Electronic Guerrilla" 1974) and Lard Free ("Spiral Malax"1977) introduce an inclination for industrial, urban and post-modern sound projections. The French "avant gardist" Philippe Besombes takes back the inspiration of " concrete music" (Pierre Henry.) and mixes it to a hybrid rocking universe (published in 1973, "Libra" figures as a true classic). Bernard Xolotl in "Prophecy" (1981), "Procession" / "Last Wave" (1983), Zanov (Green Ray, 1976) and Didier Bocquet (Voyage cerebral, 1978) will follow the musical path anticipated by Klaus Schulze in his kosmische electronic symphonies.

At the end of the 70's until the debut of the 80's Albums as "ambient 1: Music for Airports" (Brian Eno), "Cluster & Eno", "Deluxe" (Hans Joachim Roedelius side project called Harmonia) will announce the emergence of the famous ambient movement, musically characterised by gorgeous shimmering atmospheric textures.

During the 80's, Maurizio Bianchi will be in search of the absolute industrial "post-nuclear" sound tapestry. His visionary musical experience is based on cyclical loops, abrasive concrete noises and vertiginous piano dreamscapes. ("Symphony for a Genocide" 1981 and recently the mesmerising "A.M.B Iehn Tale" 2005). Before M.B and the industrial-bruitist wave, the 70's Italian specialists of electronic experiments had been (among others) Francesco Cabiati (Mirage, 1979), Francesco Bucherri (Journey, 1979), and Francesco Messina for representative, lyrical and spacey orchestrations and also Futuro Antica (D'ai primitivi all'elettronica, 1980) or Telaio Magnetico (Live' 75) for tripped out minimalism.

In the early 1980s and after following the kosmische path of classic Klaus Schulze, The Bay Area / Los Angeles school of electronic created the so called "alchemical" / "Sacred" space music. The music offers a dynamic combination between ancient-traditional music of the West and synthesised sonic soundscapes. The most representative artists of this movement are Michael Stream (Lyra Sound Constellation, 1983) Robert Rich (Numena, 1987) and Steve Roach (Dreamtime Return, 1988).

In the early 80s Ian Boddy (Spirits, 1984 / Phoenix, 1986) and Mark Shreeve (Assassin, 1983 / Legion, 1984) unique spacedout synthesised sagas represented the british answer to the challenging Berlin kosmische school. Their music embodies timbral drone sequences, systematic arpeggiations and synth-pop textures.

Young contemporary bands and artists in electronic experimentation took their inspiration from the 70's "kosmische" analog synth psychedelica of Klaus Schulze, Conrad Schnitzler, Tangerine Dream, etc. In the spaced out synthesisers spectrum, modern Japanese artists as Yamazaki Maso (noisy avant garde experimentor who contributes to the Kawabata's projects named Andromelos, Christina 23 onna and Father Moo & the Black sheeps) or Takushi Yamazaki (Space Machine) are key figures. The minimal, moody / lysergic epic soundscapes of Omit (Clinton Williams), Cloudland Canyon, Astral social club or Zombi also contribute to the renewal of the "cosmic" synth genre. Many modern electronic artists have taken an original musical direction, surfing on post-krautrock ambient waves (Aethenor), on spherical "abstract" ambient minimalism (Pete Namlook, Biosphere, Robert Henke) or on trancey, (post) industrial drone hypnosis (Alio Die / Amon / Nimh for the italian side and Andrew Chalk with his respective projects Mirror, Monos and Ora).

To sum up things, the progressive electronic subgenre is dedicated to intricate, moving, cerebral, intrusive electronic experiences that get involved in "kosmische", dark ambient, (post) industrial, droning, surreal or impressionist soundscapes territories.

Philippe BLACHE


The responsibility for the psych/space, indo/raga, krautrock and prog electronic subgenres is taken by the PSIKE team,
currently consisting of
- Sheavy
- Meltdowner
- siLLy puPPy
- Rivertree


Progressive Electronic Top Albums


Showing only studios | Based on members ratings & PA algorithm* | Show Top 100 Progressive Electronic | More Top Prog lists and filters

4.25 | 840 ratings
RUBYCON
Tangerine Dream
4.27 | 259 ratings
MIRAGE
Schulze, Klaus
4.22 | 249 ratings
TIMEWIND
Schulze, Klaus
4.16 | 721 ratings
PHAEDRA
Tangerine Dream
4.18 | 133 ratings
EPSILON IN MALAYSIAN PALE
Froese, Edgar
4.36 | 30 ratings
IN COURSE OF TIME
Zanov
4.24 | 51 ratings
AN ELECTRIC STORM
White Noise
4.11 | 224 ratings
X
Schulze, Klaus
4.25 | 46 ratings
GREEN RAY
Zanov
4.29 | 33 ratings
CATCH WAVE
Kosugi, Takehisa
4.53 | 16 ratings
ARCHITEXTURE OF SILENCE
Alpha Wave Movement
4.56 | 15 ratings
LONG LOST RELATIVES
Syrinx
4.22 | 35 ratings
LUCIFER RISING (OST)
Beausoleil, Bobby
4.19 | 40 ratings
ALIO DIE & LORENZO MONTANA: HOLOGRAPHIC CODEX
Alio Die
4.01 | 426 ratings
FORCE MAJEURE
Tangerine Dream
4.81 | 9 ratings
DECONSECRATED AND PURE
Alio Die
4.14 | 49 ratings
INTEGRATI... DISINTEGRATI
Leprino, Franco
4.02 | 170 ratings
AMBIENT 4 - ON LAND
Eno, Brian
4.01 | 171 ratings
NEW AGE OF EARTH
Ashra
4.28 | 23 ratings
HORSE ROTORVATOR
Coil

Progressive Electronic overlooked and obscure gems albums new


Random 4 (reload page for new list) | As selected by the Progressive Electronic experts team

DEN GÅTFULLA MÄNNISKAN
Malmberg, Eric
HARMONIC ASCENDANT
Schroeder, Robert
SYNTHESIST
Grosskopf, Harald
HELDON IV: AGNETA NILSSON
Heldon

Latest Progressive Electronic Music Reviews


 Iceland by PINHAS, RICHARD album cover Studio Album, 1980
4.01 | 34 ratings

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Iceland
Richard Pinhas Progressive Electronic

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

4 stars "Cold" is an adjective which could often be ascribed to Richard Pinhas' music, whether you're talking about his solo electronic works or his band work with the likes of Heldon. A master of creating alienating, chilling atmospheres already, on Iceland he really takes that to the next level, producing a frosty masterpiece which will convince listeners that the dread fimbulwinter that precedes Ragnarok is upon them. CD rereleases tack on the 25 minute bonus track "Wintermusic", a rather dispensable Fripp & Eno-esque drone piece which fails to capture the raw intensity of the original album and can safely be skipped; it's the core Arctic blast of the original tracks which really stands out.
 Out Of The City by JAZZCOMPUTER.ORG album cover Studio Album, 2009
4.13 | 4 ratings

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Out Of The City
Jazzcomputer.org Progressive Electronic

Review by BrufordFreak
Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars French jazz guitarist Yves Potin has contributed another sophisticated and thought-provoking contribution to Prog World in this decidedly cooler, more unsettling collection of soundscapes. While Yves instrumental and computer prowess is undeniable, the music here is quite dystopian and bleak. I shouldn't be saying that as if it's a bad thing, it's not--it's just the reality of the way things are progressing--especially on the human-disrupted surface of our planet. In that respect, the music presented here is quite powerful in its representation and reflection of the harm and chaos we have wielded upon our Mother. Ridley Scott and Vangelis would be quite appreciative of this music.

1. "Stress" (5:12) Though the power as a support of some tense, deep-in-the-night scene is undeniable, this one is a little too soundtrack-like and less the kind of music that you'd want to play without something theatric or visual to go with it. (Are there videos to any of your songs, Yves?) Virtuosic modern jazz-rock fusion guitar play (in a JERRY DE VILLIERS, JR. kind of way). (8.5/10)

2. "Anguish" (4:22) is like standing in a big city train or bus station and trying to fathom the surrounding chaos. Amazingly affective. (9/10)

3. "Stoned and Blurred" (5:26) unfortunately uses the same guitar sound and arpeggiated chord from the previous song to introduce the theme over the stark industrial soundscapes established by the computer synths. (9/10)

4. "Inverted Twilight" (8:06) Disc Two of Gone to Earth! Awesome job of replicating the ambient soundscapes that David Sylvian created on that awesome album! (8.5/10)

5. "Those I Left Behind" (9:17) More from Disc Two of Gone to Earth! This time with similar guitar parts to the ones that David Sylvian, Robert Fripp, or Bill Nelson added to those ambient landscapes. Add the fretless bass, water drums, and Steve Jansen-like percussive rhythms to the final section and it's a perfect Sylvian replica! (8.5/10)

6. "Cold Bright and Quiet" (9:09) reminds me of the music from Vangelis' 1995 album, Voices. Spacious, deeply engaging and magically hypnotic. Though the lead instruments are nothing but hand percussives and a kalimba-like or kalimba-MIDIed vibraphone, it is eminently effective. The bass and synth washes could be higher up in the mix. (9/10)

An aural masterpiece in its representation of mankind's self-created troubled times, this is music that you don't want to listen to if you're already depressed. I commend and laud Yves' efforts and skills, but this is one of his discs that I'll probably not return to very often. (But then, you never know!)

4.5 stars; a near-masterpiece of progressive rock music though this is probably a true masterpiece of progressive electronic music.

 Elsewhere by JAZZCOMPUTER.ORG album cover Studio Album, 2007
4.52 | 4 ratings

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Elsewhere
Jazzcomputer.org Progressive Electronic

Review by BrufordFreak
Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

5 stars The second album released by guitar-based prog electronic/jazz/fusion artist Yves Potin under the JazzComputer.Org name. The music here is very difficult to categorize. It is a fusion of many eclectic styles, all very nicely engaging the listener on some wild and otherworldly yet relaxing and thoroughly enjoyable journeys through some very exotic aural topographies that might be better described as coming from "ancient futures."

1. "Indian Mood on Thethys" (9:38) opens like a jazz guitarist's solo sound experimentation. I'm reminded of both Pat Metheny's totally solo album from 1979, New Chautauqua, as well as some of Jan Akkerman's late 1970s solo experimentation (Eli). Gorgeous stuff. The first half goes with very little rhythmic structure (the occasional background synth wash chord), but in the second half the guitar and newly-present bass and talking drum and rim shot percussives become support for the soloing of a koto. Cool sounds and cool stuff. I'd like to have seen a little more melodic development to engage me a little more deeply. (8.5/10)

2. "Dawn in the Snow" (11:34) opens as if it came straight from outtakes from Vangelis' Blade Runner soundtrack, this song contains some absolutely magical moments (like the sparsely used operatic voice notes) but lacks from full development in many overly-spacious places. (8.25/10)

3. "Elsewhere" (24.55) other than the opening atonal space synthesizer section (which is very cool but a little too long), this song stands up as one of the prettiest, most deeply engaging and evocative electronica pieces I know of from the Naughties. The section from the beginning of minute seven to ten is absolute prog perfection. The percussives in the next section are really cool, as are the space sounds and unsettling synth worms in the thirteenth minute and the guitar "punches" in the fourteenth and fifteenth minutes. The next section that establishes itself around 17:30, driven by the "lunge jazz" beat, is really cool for the scurrilous flights of the synth "bats." If the opening four minutes were as peaceful and engaging as the final four this would be a perfect prog epic. (9.5/10)

A five star minor masterpiece of ambient electronic jazz fusion (or something like that) and a gorgeous example of the possibilities of 21st Century technological potential.

 Waters by JAZZCOMPUTER.ORG album cover Studio Album, 2016
4.05 | 2 ratings

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Waters
Jazzcomputer.org Progressive Electronic

Review by BrufordFreak
Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars If Pat Metheny ever worked with Paul Hardcastle or Ed Wynne or Lars and Martin Horntveth this is the music you might get. Yves is, like Ed Wynne, a genius at getting synthetic 'nature' sounds out of his equipment'which I LOVE. And this is no poor imitator or second rate musician! We're talking virtuosity! His textures and solos are all so well thought out, so perfectly layered or alternated'all with this amazing percussive foundation (some manual, a lot electronic).

'Jazz multi-instrumentalist Yves Potin puts lush soundscapes together in a way that might be familiar to lovers of the music of Andreas Vollenveider and Robin Guthrie or even Ozric Tentacles and Paul Hardcastle but where Yves' music is different from the cited artists is in his exciting and use of percussion, layers and layers of synthetically- rendered musical nature sounds over which he employs heavily treated guitars and other synths to move the music forward on their melody lines. It's truly gorgeous music, soul-engaging music.' ' from my review of Forest Stairways.

1. 'Lake of NightRuins' (6:47) slowly picked and echo-strummed guitar over thick, jazzy bass, steady, heavy drums, and water synth sounds sets up a nice foundation over which a Pat Metheny-like synth-horn guitar joins in at the 2:00 mark and slowly, steadily introduces its sound and then starts to really solo in the third minute. Yves definitely has the Metheny sound and style down! This is awesome! In the fourth minute Yves even lets us know that he has the speed and technical chops to further earn the Metheny comparisons! Cool song'definitely more jazzy than electronica'more Ozrics than Alio Die. (9/10)

2. 'Droplets' (6:40) very catchy melodies in a groovin' jazz song constructed very much like a soundscape of Ozrics Tentacles. Great lead work over the awesome driving rhythm sections by the electric guitar and synthesizers. (9/10)

3. 'Oceaniques Part 1' (3:01) computer/synthesizer-generated water sounds open this song before electrified acoustic guitar joins in with chords and arpeggi. Fretless bass and distant 'French horn' guitar are added to the mix in the second minute. The song pretty much floats along without much development or meat, as one would almost expect based on the title. (7.5/10)

4. 'Swirls' (10:26) opens with more wave-like computer-generated synthesizer sounds behind which slow-attacking electric guitar chords appear about every six seconds. In the third minute a pulsating sound joins in (moving at a time and pace different from the waves on top). Gradually the wave-sounds begin to shift to sound a little more like keyboard chords. Then, at 3:50, a funky bass sequence enters and begins to take over as the pace-setter. By the end of the fifth minute a Allan Holdsworth-like guitar enters and begins to solo in quite an impressive way. He is soon joined by a second guitar lead, this one more synthesized (or is it a keyboard?) The Holdsworth influence (and imitation?) is remarkable. The two go on exchanging the lead in 'duel' fashion keeping us interested by each remaining founded in their own melody lines. So cool! Around 7:40 this begins to decay and a spacious, more cave- like airy section of synthesizer washes and percussives enters. At 8:42 an alarm-like keyboard sequence makes itself briefly known before just as quickly disappearing'and alternating (as if in a conversation) with a slower-attack synth playing chords. Then it ends! too soon! I want more of this conversation! Great song! Really interesting! (10/10)

5. 'Crustacean' (6:07) saw synth washes with heavily reverbed guitar arpeggi are soon joined by very cool funky/fretless/computer-popping bass and keys (so psybient like). David Torn-like guitar enters to take the lead at the end of the second minute. This is so Sylvian-esque! (Brilliant Trees Side Two or Disc Two of Gone to Earth!) Awesome! (9/10)

6. 'Oceaniques Part 2' (7:37) Straightforward jazz with heavily treated instrumental sounds and water/wave samples. The scaled down, more spacious third minute is cool'though it makes you anticipate something dramatic to follow. The muted synth washes and fretless bass in this section are awesome! Electrified acoustic guitar play becomes a soloing instrument. Nice! Again, Yves can't help but show us: he can play! Great musicianship and songwriting skills on display here! (9.5/10)

7. 'Underground River' (7:11) More 'real' water sounds used at the opening with large brass metal bells, gongs, and/or cymbals being played over the top. Early in the second minute an electric guitar screams out a single note that slowly decays. Soon, these 'outbursts' recur while beneath a bass and drum rhythm line is slowly, almost imperceptibly being established. Two chords of magical synth wash support while a very emotional lead guitar solo takes over in the fourth minute. I'm out of comparisons for this sound and soloing style (maybe Narada New Age guitarist Paul Speers), but it's beautiful. (9/10)

8. 'Oceaniques Part 3' (3:31) water flowing, washing, over which bass, drums, and guitar weave into a little spacious jazz motif. The soloing, like Part !, and the music here just kind of meander without ever really gelling into a concrete direction'flowing aimlessly despite the currents of the ocean. (7.5/10)

For lovers of the more synthesizer dominant release of 2017, Forest Stairways, be prepared: this not the same; there is much more of a guitar and jazz dominance to this album (which is just as amazing as the synth work of FS.

I haven't said this enough in my reviews of Yves music, but this man can set up some amazing bass lines! I don't honestly know which are programmed and which are played manually but IT DOESN'T MATTER! They're amazing!

4.5 stars; a near-masterpiece of progressive rock music and definitely a progressive jazz fusion artist to check out!

 Cascata by CADIMA, SAMUEL album cover Studio Album, 2017
4.00 | 3 ratings

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Cascata
Samuel Cadima Progressive Electronic

Review by BrufordFreak
Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars Having been on a big hunger for electronica--both past and present--it is quite appropriate and fortunate for this album to land in my lap. My first impressions are ones of joy: joy for the fact that another young modern artist is interested in picking up where the masters of the 1970s like Edgar Froese, Klaus Schulze, and Manuel Göttsching left off; joy for the fact that this artist wants to use guitars, bass and drums in his creations (over and above the usual use of keyboards/synthesizers); joy that the artist sees the blending of various sections into one cohesive whole as a desirable creative expression; and joy that this artist is quite serious in his study and respect of the techniques and songs that came before him (which allows him inspiration and courage for his own creations).

1. "Cascata" (22:41) opens with bubbling and popping as if we're at Yellowstone's "Mud Pots." In the second minute a slow pulsing electronic buzz begins to repeat about every eight seconds. Then a faster-paced arpeggio joins in from a squishy keyboard. Next a couple or three more keyboard tracks enter weaving together while a spacey warbling high-pitched synth takes the lead in a meandering solo. At the end of the fifth minute a human voice keens a couple of times from the background. The established weave fades out at the end of the sixth minute with bubbling sounds bridging our way into a new soundtrack?this one sounding much more traditional Berlin School with old synth sounds filling the fore- and background and wings. Three tracks begin but are then joined by some more palette-filling synths in the ninth minute. All the while a "harpsichord" like instrument has been playing a nonstop sequence of arpeggi since the bubbles faded away. Mellotron voices and Mike Oldfield-like guitar scream out from the background. Very pretty soundscape. At the end of the twelfth minute a more "soft-mallet" synthesizer sequence takes over providing the foundational driving force as more electro-pops and older familiar synth Berlin School electronic sounds fill in the tracks making the complete weave around it. Nice section with some interesting Kraftwerk-like industrial sounds as well. Then, at 17:00, a burbling synth saw cuts through all other sound and shuts the previous section down. Deep electronic bass pulses alternate with saw-like synth "trails" before a sustained though occasionally shifting high pitch eerie synth note steers the aliens on. The jet propulsion drive is the only other sound to let us know that there is life, that there is movement here, otherwise the ghostly single synth note makes us think that we're awfully alone. At 20:30 a slowly picked acoustic guitar begins leading us through some grounding arpeggi while the alien solo ship continues to fly above. Cool song that takes us on a widely imaginative journey?one that, I feel, will take many listens before a defined path is imprinted. I like the "tour through time" the different sections offer us. (8.5/10)

2. "Calado" (7:21) opens with heavily treated electrified acoustic guitars strumming away before Fripp-like sustained guitar notes join in. Hand percussion is next to join in as the twin Fripp tracks continue to pronounce the melodic theme over the strumming guitars. A second more crazed synth begins to join in in the third minute. It gets pretty psych-crazy in the fifth minute when the music shifts radically into Willy Wonka "Tunnel of Terror" realm. A few droning notes are all that keep us grounded for the two minutes of this ride until the guitar-strumming returns for the final minute. (9.5/10)

3. "Voo Noturno" (8:30) opens with a guitar picked "sequence" "loop" over which synth squeals, squirts, and burbles are interspersed. In the second minute, the presence of a heavily distorted bass "line" tries to make itself known while more synth lines, these more melodic, show themselves over the top, working their way into the weave. I am truly impressed with Samuel's use of acoustic guitar picking arpeggi to lay down the "sequences" in place of computer-generated ones! At 4:30 there is a HUGE shift as the music established fades and disappears while an "electron wind" bridges us to a section in which a screaming Edgar Froese-like guitar (think "Coldwater Canyon") solos over computer generated clicks, pops, and voice samples. This continues to 7:10 when the guitar fades out. At 7:30 a cheesy horror movie warbling synth enters over a saccharine electric piano solo. Weird ending. (9/10)

4. "Meia-Luz" (4:19) opening with pulsing computer-edited midi-ed sound slowly shifting chords over the first minute. In the second minute a distant, lonely, space "slide whistle" enters providing some melodic structure. In the third minute a meandering JOHN MARTYN-like acoustic guitar track is added to the mix. Very interesting but nothing truly engaging or memorable to bring me back to this one. (7.5/10)

My one suggestion for Samuel, should he wish to continue emulating the Berlin School and electronica masters that have come before him, is to not be afraid to stick with one set of sounds over the long lengths of song?or to more slowly blend less radically different themes or instrumental palettes. For example, the first guitar-based section of Voo Noturno could very easily have been extended to provide the background/base for an entire song of 8-15 minutes; the two radical shifts that occur in the middle and near the end were not necessary. And Meia-Luz would have been improved (i.e. become more engaging), in my opinion if the minimal weave had been thickened and smoothed by two or three more tracks.

 Forest Stairways by JAZZCOMPUTER.ORG album cover Studio Album, 2017
4.51 | 3 ratings

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Forest Stairways
Jazzcomputer.org Progressive Electronic

Review by BrufordFreak
Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

5 stars Jazz multi-instrumentalist Yves Potin puts lush soundscapes together in a way that might be familiar to lovers of the music of Andreas Vollenveider and Robin Guthrie or even Ozric Tentacles, Steve and David Gordon, and Paul Hardcastle but where Yves' music is different from the cited artists is in his exciting and use of percussion, layers and layers of synthetically-rendered musical nature sounds over which he employs heavily treated guitars, koto, and other synths to move the music forward on their melody lines. It's truly gorgeous music, soul-engaging music.

1. "Flying Owl" (10:12) has the rhythmic drive of a Berlin School sequence-driven song but is guitar, koto, and percussion dominated! The opening 90 seconds is more ambient and relaxing, but by the two minute mark we are off to the races! (9.5/10)

2. "Fern Chimes" (9:47) sounds like the music I would have made had I stuck with it! Love the deep bass tone, the percussive and computer-generated nature sounds, and the guitar strums, and the gentle keyboard play. At 4:50 there is a shift as a bulfrog-like bass line takes over as the main driving force. Many layers of keyboard-generated sounds are interspersed over the top of the bass creating quite a busy image of a nature scene. Vibes in the seventh and eighth minutes are cool. (9.5/10)

3. "Forest Mist" (9:20) wonderfully beautiful and relaxing "Tropical" background over which heavily reverbed electric guitar strums are spaced out so that they can float away with the mist. This is so like a Robin Guthrie soundscape! Then the koto comes in as the lead instrument. Gorgeous! (9/10)

4. "Mirror Lake" (9:17) despite the draw of the lush synths and deep bass lines, it is the busy hand percussion that is my favorite stuff to pay attention to on this one. Great chord and melody lines from the keys here. The added keyboard percussion in the final third of the song is really cool. (9/10)

5. "Future Tribes" (11:32) opens with very slow attacking synth washes and lots of waves of tuned and electronic percussion sounds over which large hand drums are played in hypnotic patterns. Echoing guitar strums enter in the fifth minute while some slow-decaying lead notes also present themselves, one at a time. At the very end of the sixth minute these lead guitar notes start to feel as if it's Allan Holdsworth playing them. Then Pat Metheny-like synth-horn guitar lead joins the party! (Think "Are You Going With Me?") This is awesome! The bass has transformed into something more upbeat and insistent and the percussion falls right in line. I'm dancing! I'm in Heaven! (My version of heaven will have lots of dancing and lots of music like this.) (9.5/10)

I will repeat the statement I made in song #2: Yves has created music that I feel would very well have come out of my own heart/mind/brain had I continued trying to pursue a course as a musician/composer--music that comes from the soul and feeds and affects other souls. Well done! Bravo and Encore! LOTS more!

Five stars; a masterpiece of progressive rock music and definitely a shining masterpiece of prog electronic music. This is my first exposure to Yves' music! I can't wait to get to know his previous (and future) work!

 Epsilon In Malaysian Pale by FROESE, EDGAR album cover Studio Album, 1975
4.18 | 133 ratings

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Epsilon In Malaysian Pale
Edgar Froese Progressive Electronic

Review by BrufordFreak
Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars Edgar Froese must have had so much energy and so many ideas back in the 1970s; it's astonishing to think of the amount of material he released between his main project with TANGERINE DREAM and the side project of his solo releases: 12 TD releases and five solo just in the 1970s!

Side One: "Epsilon in Malaysian Pale" (16:28) Before getting experimental in the seventh minute, the opening "flute" and Mellotron dominated section is quite developed, sculpted, giving the listener quite a bucolic feeling as Froese must have been feeling being inspired by his recent travels within Oceania. The second section begins around the nine minute mark while treated train sounds form the transitional sound bridge. A simple slow, low sequence and string synth are now accompanying, nearly dominating the "flute" and 'tron sounds that have been carried forward from the opening section. This sounds more like TD but still simpler, somehow more connected to nature. At 13:30 we have traveled to the final section. Gone is the sequencer, gone is the 'tron; now we have strings synth chords and the ubiquitous synthesized "flute." These take us to a peaceful, though heavier, less upbeat, less carefree, end. (9/10)

Side Two: "Marouba Bay" (16:57) opens with a decidedly more-distressed feeling. As the song progresses we hear a lot of sounds familiar to us from the previous TD release, "Phaedra," still in their less than polished sound forms. (You can tell that something happened to EF and TD between the making of this album and the making of "Rubycon" which resulted in much clearer, more confident-sounding sound reproduction. I don't know if it was in the engineering room or equipment or some filtering or sound-board system up-date, but the "old" sound of 74-75 is much more noticeable when compared to Rubycon and beyond. In the sixth minute a arpeggio sequence enters while "horn" and "string" synths alternate their contributions providing melody and interest points. This song feels far more like a Tangerine Dream song, the sound a little more thinly suffused, and more pastoral in its "imagery," but very little to distinguish it from the stuff Froese was doing with TD. (When does he start to use guitar?) (8.5/10)

Not on the level as some of the albums he was doing with/as Tangerine Dream, but close. A four to 4.5 star album.

 Phaedra by TANGERINE DREAM album cover Studio Album, 1974
4.16 | 721 ratings

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Phaedra
Tangerine Dream Progressive Electronic

Review by BrufordFreak
Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

5 stars 1. "Phaedra" (16:48) if ever there was a perfect electronica companion to Stanley Kubrick's film "2001: A Space Odyssey," this would be it. Eerie and spacey and forlorn yet powered by the human spirit of hope and adventure, TD put something together here that transcends just listening: this is music is suggestive of worlds and sensual experiences beyond normal imagination--or rather, this music enhances the capacity of imagination. Thought the driving sequences change and shift often throughout the course of "Phaedra" the pace is fairly consistent and insistent; there is no let up on the course into infinity--at least, that is, until 10:20, when it appears that we are waylaid by reaching the Void. (And people express their distaste for Genesis' "The Waiting Room"! This must have really irked them!) Luckily, an angelic force appears two minutes later to rescue us and push away the Faeiries of Kaos. Yet, these angels are not from Heaven, but from the Tao! They're here to tell us that beyond the illusory worlds of space and time there exists the potentiality and reality of Anything and Everything and Nothing! Nice song. (9.5/10)

2. "Mysterious Semblance at the Strand of Nightmares" (10:46) opens with what sound like distant street noises as if heard through the bedroom window from a high rise apartment in the middle of a hot, windless summer night. Synth organ enters in a eerie, vampire movie soundtrack kind of way (though also exceedingly close to Tony Banks' intro to "Watcher in the Skies"). The organth floats slowly around the aural soundscape (panning) as flanging and sequenced riffs and synthesized wind noises flit in and around the soundscape. Very somber and depressing. In the sixth minutes signs of life appear in the form of bouncy synths chords and organ arpeggi while the somber organth continues its parade of death through the city streets. Flitting wind gusts (or are they bats?) seem to occasionally join ole Drac as he looks for his latest victim (the humanized chords just before the last minute?) Genius. (9/10)

3. "Movements of a Visionary" (7:58) opens with experimental sounds that seem unnatural without the contributions of electricity. At the end of the second minute a mallet-like sound creates a fast-paced sequence over which organ soon joins. Electric piano later is added while the sequence shifts down an octave or two. (8.5/10) 4. "Sequence in 'C'" (2:17) is peaceful and serene as layers of "wooden flutes" create a pleasant, floating canopy of sheets blowing in the wind. (5/5)

An historic achievement in music and a masterpiece of its genre.

 Evening Star by FRIPP & ENO album cover Studio Album, 1975
3.79 | 91 ratings

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Evening Star
Fripp & Eno Progressive Electronic

Review by BrufordFreak
Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars Yes, Side Two is garbage, but when you have a whole side like Side One, it's hard to throw away an entire album! Personally, I love ambient music. I find music that pacifies or soothes the soul essential to life and creativity. Many of the achievements in the expansion of consciousness that I've made personally have been due to the assist of musics like these. When this album came known to me (I think it was 1980), I played it a lot. My meditation practice was new, my dream journalling and pursuit of all things Jungian in full swing, and the "ambient music" scene was critical to my personal journey. It's weird, as I listen to Side Two, I don't even remember it (I must have never played it--or, for sure, ignored it once I knew it), while every song on Side One conjures up myriad images and memories. Plus, guest member of my family garage band, Billy Bob, had a "Fripp in the Box" looping pedal system with which we had no end of fun jamming with and around. For me song 2, "Evening Star" (7:20) is the one that I hold most dear as it most reminds me of DAVID SYLVIAN's wonderful Disc Two of "Gone to Earth" with all of the instrumentals of he and Bill Nelson and Fripp ambienting it up, but they all have helped contribute to some of my favorite cassette playlists.

3.5 stars rated up because this was such ground-breaking, historic stuff back in 1975!

 Opera Magnetica (with Aglaia) by ALIO DIE album cover Studio Album, 2017
3.96 | 4 ratings

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Opera Magnetica (with Aglaia)
Alio Die Progressive Electronic

Review by BrufordFreak
Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars The most prolific studio artist in Prog Electronica and perhaps in all of Prog World (well, okay, maybe not THE most prolific [Buckethead, Tangerine Dream, John Zorn, Acid Mother Temple]), Stefano Musso released (to my knowledge) six albums in 2017, including this one, with long-time collaborator Gino Fioravanti who goes by the working name of AGLAIA. It's very difficult to find fault with any of Stefano's projects as they all succeed in transporting the listener to dream-like places, all have mood-altering effects. What's truly surprising to me is the way Stefano can vary the methods he uses to achieve such results, the instruments and effects he uses on his instruments in order to offer variety to his sound palette.

1. "Shape of the Wind" (16:00) a calm, serene, somewhat moody weave of ethereal keyboards, treated strings and percussion, the floating feeling evoked throughout is certainly in line with the song title. (9/10)

2. "One Second Before Dark" (18:12) opens with a loop of four ascending notes, slow attacking and long decaying in the mid-octave range, playing over the sounds of water lapping at a sandy beach. In the second minute the water sounds get louder--too loud for my tastes. I love the somnambulistic ENO-like loop. Other higher notes and incidentals join in during the fifth minute followed by others of lower pitch in the sixth as the water sounds fade into the distant background. With the spectrum of sound broadened, and each layer kind of meandering in their own way (even polyrhythmically [if you can call this "rhythmical"]), the song begins to unleash tension, keeping the listener alert and on the edge. In the fourteenth minute the wave sounds return, this time providing a calming effect--in opposition to the effect of the weave of multiple layers of independent instrumental streams. Brilliant! Sounds of zither strings being scraped or tuned become involved in the sixteenth minute and remain to disconcert through to the end as the music slowly fades out, down beneath the calm waves. (9/10)

3. "Wake of a Silver Water" (22:08) low key, low impact "water music" uses slow-floating drone sounds over the trinkling sounds of lapping water (and other "outdoor" percussives). I sometimes find nature sounds almost distracting rather than soothing when Stefano incorporates them. The melodic and harmonic weave created by the musical instruments is very peaceful, reminding me of sitting in the quiet courtyard outside of the Great Mosque at Cordoba (despite the water sounds). In the second half of the tenth minute another more metallic multiplicity of sound enters, thickening the sonic field. I might have liked to see/hear/feel a little more change and development over the course of its 22 minutes, but as a calming piece of background music, it doesn't get much better than this! (9/10)

While this is a masterpiece of prog electronic music, I think it more of a near-masterpiece of progressive rock music. If you want to meditate, do yoga, dream, astral travel, or just have something nice in the background while you cook or read, you can't go wrong with this one!

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Progressive Electronic bands/artists list

Bands/Artists Country
12 FOLLOWERS United States
6LA8 Pakistan
ACI Germany
AEON France
AETHENOR Multi-National
AFTERLIFE United States
ILDEFONSO AGUILAR Spain
PEKKA AIRAKSINEN Finland
AIRSCULPTURE United Kingdom
ALBERGO INTERGALATTICO SPAZIALE Italy
ALIO DIE Italy
ALLEGORY CHAPEL LTD United States
DAEVID ALLEN MICROCOSMIC United Kingdom
ALLUSTE Italy
ALPHA WAVE MOVEMENT United States
ALTO STRATUS United Kingdom
AMBER ROUTE United States
AMON Italy
PETER ANDERSSON Sweden
ANDROMELOS Japan
ANNA SJALV TREDJE Sweden
ARC United Kingdom
ARPANET United States
EDWARD ARTEMIEV Russia
ARZATHON Sweden
ASCOIL SUN Finland
ASHRA Germany
THE ASTROBOY Portugal
ATOMINE ELEKTRINE Sweden
AUBE Japan
AUTOMAT Italy
AWENSON France
MARVIN AYRES United Kingdom
HARVEY BAINBRIDGE United Kingdom
AIDAN BAKER Canada
SIMON BALESTRAZZI Italy
BAFFO BANFI Italy
BASS COMMUNION United Kingdom
PETER BAUMANN Germany
BAUMANN/KOEK Germany
BEAR BONES LAY LOW Venezuela
BOBBY BEAUSOLEIL United States
CARLOS BELTRÁN Mexico
LÁSZLÓ BENKő Hungary
PHILIPPE BESOMBES France
BETWEEN INTERVAL Sweden
MAURIZIO BIANCHI Italy
BIG ROBOT Norway
BIOSPHERE Norway
BLACK UNICORN United States
TIM BLAKE France
BLUE MOTION Switzerland
BLUE SAUSAGE INFANT United States
WOLFGANG BOCK Germany
DIDIER BOCQUET France
IAN BODDY United Kingdom
GASTON BORREANI Italy
ADAM CERTAMEN BOWNIK Poland
BREIDABLIK Norway
OLIVIER BRIAND France
MICHAEL BRÜCKNER Germany
FRANCESCO BUCCHERI Italy
HAROLD BUDD United States
MICHAEL BUNDT Germany
FRANCESCO CABIATI Italy
ROBERTO CACCIAPAGLIA Italy
SAMUEL CADIMA Portugal
CALDERA United States
TOM CAMERON United States
DALLAS CAMPBELL United States
CELLULOID United States
CELLUTRON & THE INVISIBLE United States
ANDREW CHALK United Kingdom
JOHN CHRISTIAN United Kingdom
CHRISTINE 23 ONNA Japan
CHURCH OF HED United States
THE CIRCULAR RUINS United Kingdom
CLOUDLAND BALLROOM Ireland
CLOUDLAND CANYON United States
CLOUDLAND CANYON/LICHENS United States
COIL United Kingdom
COMA VIRUS Germany
PASCAL COMELADE France
COMPUTERCHEMIST United Kingdom
CON HERTZ Germany
CONTRASTATE United Kingdom
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CRAWL UNIT United States
CREMATOR United Kingdom
CROP CIRCLES France
CROWS LABYRINTH Netherlands
CULTURAL NOISE Austria
FRANCESCO CURRÀ Italy
CYBOTRON Australia
DEAD VOICES ON AIR United Kingdom
DEUTSCHE WERTARBEIT Germany
NICOLAS DICK France
DIN A TESTBILD Germany
DIONNE - BRÉGENT Canada
DOLULUS Switzerland
DR. SPACE'S ALIEN PLANET TRIP Denmark
HEINRICH DRESSEL Italy
E-MUSIKGRUPPE LUX OHR Finland
EARTHSTAR Multi-National
EDEN France
ELEKTRIKTUS Italy
ELICOIDE Italy
EMERALDS United States
J.D EMMANUEL United States
ENDOPLASMIC FLOW Multi-National
BRIAN ENO United Kingdom
ENVENOMIST United States
EXPO 70 United States
F.G EXPERIMENTAL LABORATORY Switzerland
FRANCO FALSINI Italy
FANGER & SCHÖNWÄLDER Germany
FARBFELDE United States
FASER Germany
FATHER MOO & THE BLACK SHEEP Japan
FFWD United Kingdom
FHIEVEL Italy
FIVE THOUSAND SPIRITS Italy
FLAMEN DIALIS France
FORMA United States
FOVEA HEX Ireland
FREE SYSTEM PROJEKT Netherlands
FRIPP & ENO United Kingdom
EDGAR FROESE Germany
PETER FROHMADER Germany
KEITH FULLERTON WHITMAN United States
FUTURO ANTICO Multi-National
GALACTIC EXPLORERS Germany
MICHAEL GARRISON United States
MORT GARSON Canada
GRAHAM GETTY United Kingdom
SACHA GIBSON United Kingdom
BRUCE GILBERT United Kingdom
GIRÓN Spain
MATHIAS GRASSOW Germany
GRAUGLANZ Germany
GREGOR CÜRTEN & ANSELM ROGMANS Germany
RANDY GREIF United States
RAGNAR GRIPPE Sweden
HARALD GROSSKOPF Germany
SVEN GRÜNBERG Estonia
GEORGES GRÜNBLATT France
JEAN GUÉRIN France
CARLOS GUIRAO Spain
BRUCE HAACK Canada
HALL OF MIRRORS Italy
PETER MICHAEL HAMEL Germany
HARMONIA Germany
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HEADSHOCK United Kingdom
TIM HECKER Canada
HELDON France
HEMMELIG TEMPO Norway
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JACK HERTZ United States
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HOLLAN HOLMES United States
HORSE PALACE Canada
HARUOMI HOSONO Japan
PETER HOWELL & THE RADIOPHONIC WORKSHOP United Kingdom
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GIUSEPPE IELASI Italy
INVOLVED United States
IVERSEN Norway
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GUSTAVO JOBIM Brazil
EDDIE JOBSON United Kingdom
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ESA KOTILAINEN Finland
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MIHA KRALJ Yugoslavia
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RICHARD LAINHART United States
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IGOR LEN Russia
FRANCO LEPRINO Italy
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LIGHTWAVE France
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LOOM Germany
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IAN MACFARLANE Australia
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ERIC MALMBERG Sweden
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MEERKAT Italy
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EMERSON MEYERS United States
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MONOTON Austria
GEN KEN MONTGOMERY United States
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KEN MOORE United States
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MORA-TAU Japan
SCOTT MOSHER United States
MOTHER MALLARD'S PORTABLE MASTERPIECE CO. United States
MOUNTAIN OCEAN SUN Japan
MOUNTAINS United States
THE ALMAN MULO BAND United Kingdom
MUSHY Italy
IAN NAGOSKI United States
PETE NAMLOOK Germany
NAUTILUS Germany
NAZI UFO COMMANDER Italy
NEMESIS Finland
NEPTUNE TOWERS Norway
NEURONIUM Spain
NEVER KNOWN Italy
NEWCLEAR WAVES Italy
NIMH Italy
NIMH + M.B Italy
NISUS Belgium
NODE United Kingdom
NUMINA United States
OMIT (CLINTON WILLIAMS) New Zealand
ONEOHTRIX POINT NEVER United States
OÖPHOI Italy
OSCILLOTRON Sweden
OSE France
P'COCK Germany
PALADIN United Kingdom
STEPHEN PARSICK Germany
PEAK Australia
PETER M. Italy
PHROZENLIGHT Netherlands
RICHARD PINHAS France
CHRISTOPHE POISSON France
POLE France
BRENDAN POLLARD United Kingdom
TJ PORTER Canada
COLIN POTTER United Kingdom
NIC POTTER United Kingdom
ROGER POWELL United States
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PROPELLER ISLAND Germany
PRZEMYSLAW RUDZ Poland
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QUARKS Chile
RADIATION Russia
RADIO MASSACRE INTERNATIONAL United Kingdom
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NIK RAICEVIC United States
RAINBOW GENERATOR Australia
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RAISON D'ETRE Sweden
RAPOON United Kingdom
REALTIME Germany
TOM RECCHION United States
REDSHIFT United Kingdom
JONAS REINHARDT United States
ALEJANDRO VILLALÓN RENAUD Mexico
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ROGUE SPORE Ireland
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SAB Japan
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SIJ Ukraine
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JAKOB SKØTT Denmark
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SOFTWARE Germany
SONISK BLODBAD Multi-National
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SPERM Finland
STARDRIVE United States
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STELLARDRONE Lithuania
SUBINTERIOR Italy
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SYRINX Canada
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TANGRAM Hungary
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THOUGHT GUILD United States
THREE SUNS Austria
THROBBING GRISTLE United Kingdom
ASMUS TIETCHENS Germany
TIPU SABZAWAAR Multi-National
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TÖNEN United States
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TOTAL STATION Russia
TRANCE United States
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ROLF TROSTEL Germany
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JOEL VANDROOGENBROECK Switzerland
PATRICK VIAN France
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VOLT Netherlands
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PHILLIP WERREN Canada
WHITE NOISE United Kingdom
PATRICK WIKLACZ France
TERJE WINTHER Norway
WINTHERSTORMER Norway
WO0 Serbia
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RENÉ VAN DER WOUDEN Netherlands
X-TG United Kingdom
XIU Italy
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YELLOW MAGIC ORCHESTRA Japan
YEN POX United States
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YOU Germany
ZA SIÓDMA GÓRA Poland
EDWARD M. ZAJDA United States
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ZANOV France
ZED France
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