European New Instrumental Music

European New Instrumental Music

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Besides the familiar artists like Tangerine Dream, Enya, Schroeder and Schonning, this two-hour collection gives wonderful exposure to many new musicians working in the areas of electronic space music and pseudo-jazzy ensemble styles. The two CDs both begin with dynamic cuts. The first starts with a Tangerine Dream cut from the Shy People soundtrack and heads into three cohesive pieces from the new Blue Flame label, highlighted by Schonning's "Celestial Mirage" from his excellent Locrian Arabesque. Lenny MacDowell adds a floating piece, "Freefall," and that gives way to the splendid guitaristics of Martin Kolbe & Ralf Illenberger. Following Enya's "Aldebaran," we find one of the real gems of this collection, Alap Jetzer's 8:45 track, "Joy-Ensemble." The second disc begins with the familiar "Bolero Carmin" by The Blue Chip Orchestra, and stops along the way to hear the MacDowell/Spendel Project, Matthias Thurow, Ekseption and others leading up to "Soft Touch," an eight-minute Robert Schroeder cut from his release Driftin'. This full double-platter of cutting-edge electronic music is a wonderful compendium of what kind of modern music is paving the way in Europe, which is often instrumental in influencing the stateside composers with whom we are more familiar.