Ugur Dogan

G a m - I Â z â d

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Turkish DJ and composer Ugur Dogan goes back about 30 years for his debut album, G a m - I Â z â d, all the way to the heyday of German prog pioneers like Tangerine Dream, Kraftwerk, and Cluster. These eight lengthy instrumental tracks are built on Mediterranean and Middle Eastern percussion, but over that hypnotic underpinning, Dogan has layered piano, organ, and tons of vintage synths in the classic style of mid-'70s Krautrock. Tempos are slow and stately, chords are held for literally minutes at a time, and noodly, vaguely psychedelic solos occasionally drift up out of the eddies of sustain and echo, dissolving back into the background after a bit. Mostly languid and narcoleptic, G a m - I Â z â d does pick up a bit around halfway through with the dramatic "Nharyz," a march-tempo tune with the foreboding feel of classic Gong, or even -- perish the thought -- Emerson, Lake & Palmer. Die-hard prog fans will adore this record, but it may be simply far too old-school for many modern-day electronica heads. Too bad, because G a m - I Â z â d is a most enjoyable listen.

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