VI 2068 Stratosfear
Produced by Tangerine Dream
Released on November 1976
UK CHART POSITION #39 . . . US CHART POSITION #158
Find it at GEMM
VI 2068 cover
[high resolution photo]
 

T angerine Dream, which enjoyed an association with the progressive rock movement because of shared ideals, actually began to sound like a progressive rock band on Stratosfear. “The Big Sleep in Search of Hades,” for example, utilizes the same pastoral feel as King Crimson’s early work before yielding to Rubycon’s electronic space imagery. The sequencers are still present, though here accelerated and placed on an equal footing with the surrounding music, mixed with guitars that recall Pink Floyd and synthesizer melodies that share the directness of Vangelis or Cluster. The opening title track remains one of their most accessible works to date, forsaking their typically amorphous introductions for concrete electronic music. “3AM at the Border of the Marsh from Okefenokee” favors synthesizers that share the rich tones of a marimba, resulting in a bubbling mix of melody and texture. “Invisible Limits” marches out of the mist to feature perky sequencer patterns and a violin-sounding guitar that owes some debt to the pioneering work of Robert Fripp. By treating the sequencers as a third instrument rather than an electronic foundation, Stratosfear builds on the softer moments of Ricochet to create a suprisingly warm and immediate album. The cyclical nature of the arrangements gives the impression of individual songs rather than a single, epic tone poem, and despite its title Stratosfear isn’t nearly as eerie as previous albums. The brisk pacing and accessible melodies would continue to play a prominent role in their subsequent work, notably on Force Majeure and Tangram. Stratosfear would be the last studio album from the trio of Baumann, Franke and Froese, and many rank it with the best from this fruitful period.

VI 2068 inner gatefold VI 2068 back cover
VI 2068 inner gatefold VI 2068 back cover

TRACK LISTING

  1. STRATOSFEAR    10:04
  2. THE BIG SLEEP IN SEARCH OF HADES    4:45
  3. 3AM AT THE BORDER OF THE MARSH FROM OKEFENOKEE    8:10
  4. INVISIBLE LIMITS    11:40

    All tracks composed by Chris Franke/Edgar Froese/Peter Baumann

CREDITS

PETER BAUMANN -- moog synthesizer, project electronic rhythm computer, fender e piano, mellotron
CHRIS FRANKE -- moog synthesizer, organ, percussion, loop mellotron, harpsichord
EDGAR FROESE -- mellotron, moog synthesizer, twelve and six string guitar, grand piano, bass guitar, mouth organ
Otto -- engineer
Cooke-Key Associates -- cover
Monique Froese -- inside cover photograph

return to TANGERINE DREAM discography

REGION RELEASE DATE LABEL MEDIA ID NUMBER FEATURES
UK November 1976 Virgin LP/CS V 2068 picture sleeve
US November 1976 Virgin LP/CS PZ/AL 34427 gatefold cover, tricolor label
FRA   Virgin LP 202621 gatefold cover
GER   Virgin LP 28146XOT gatefold cover
UK 1980s? Virgin LP OVED 70 gatefold cover
US March 1984 Virgin LP/CS VI/VIC 2068 gatefold cover
GER 1995 Virgin CD 840 065 digital remaster
UK 1995 Virgin CD TAND 8  
  Feb/Apr 1995 Virgin CD/CS 91010  
US July 23, 1996 Virgin CD/CS CDV 2068 picture sleeve

 

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