Tangerine Dream

The Best of Tangerine Dream

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AllMusic Review by Mike DeGagne

Comprised of mainly '80s material, except for 1973's "Wahn," this ten-track best-of from Tangerine Dream is a quick but effective jaunt through some of their finest latter-day offerings. Because of Tangerine Dream's multitude of albums, this group of songs serves better as a reflection of their style of music at this point in their career rather than as a musical compilation. The modernization of the instruments that make up the structure, flow, and overall buoyancy of the music heard here can quickly be contrasted to their early sound, which was much more trance inducing and electronically viscous. On pieces like "Central Park" and "Poland," the rapid fluttering of synthesizers and induction of staccato rhythms through drum and cymbal usage represents the band's approach to add fluidity to their sound. Left behind are the dreamy wavelength excursions of past albums like Stratosfear or Rubycon from the early '70s, replaced here with electronic arpeggios that swoop and climb. Only "Tyger" swims in the vastness of their early sound, which in itself was groundbreaking and equally delightful. Keeping up with the syncopated electrification of '80s pop synth, Tangerine Dream's music started to emerge in numerous film scores and soundtracks, like the wondrous brilliancy of "Yellowstone Park," used to enhance the beauty of the Rocky Mountains during big screen fly-bys. "Dolphin Dance," taken from 1986's Underwater Sunlight, is a dazzling array of Christopher Franke and Edgar Froese's subtle wizardry, capturing the serenity of the ocean through colorful keyboard intricacies. Although not a complete collection of their work from the decade, this best of is still a beautiful set of Tangerine Dream's luscious aural imagery.

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