Dear Herr Froese

I met you soon after Tangerine Dream turned five albums old. Colleagues Chris Franke and Peter Bauman helped you craft the timeless Phaedra for new label Virgin.

Purchased by instalments from my Friday/Saturday Record Store job, I took the album home one mid-winter night to a bedroom warmed by the faint splutter of a kerosene heater, its punched metal top projecting an imperceptible glow on the ceiling.

Lights off, the music unfolded through my own inky stratosphere, filling the space with alien drift and romantic pulse. My mind expanded, as did my pupils, until the blue kerosene luminescence resolved into a cosmic mandala hovering above.

Drifting, fragmentary visions.

Phaedra inner gatefold

Edgar, my world is emptier for your sudden passing. Yet in your constellation of albums, none shines more brightly than Phaedra, whose questing electronics transmit a human beauty; out, in. I wrapped myself in its beguiling strangeness and unfathomable beauty; then, now.

The verse—a poor thing, stillborn another late-winter night forty-two revolutions on—is my tribute.

put on a coat woven from the night sky

photon threads

hydrogen hem

stardust shoulders

nebula sleeves

centauri collar

orion belt

pleiades pockets

andromeda lining

each button a portal to infinite dreams

*

5 Stars (of course)

*

Tangerine Dream Phaedra

*

This is the final instalment (for now) in the #200wordchallenge series.

To find other Tangerine Dream stuff at Vinyl Connection, type the band name into the Search box.

15 comments

  1. Bruce I’m quite appreciating your contributions to the 200wordchallenge this week – it’s probably hardest to condense reviews of the records we adore!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. True. The tendency to gush is sometimes very seductive. Thanks for the feedback, Geoff.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m saving my favourites for the end of the 1001 list (likely albums 992-1001), I may have to set a word limit on those for myself. The white album could spill into a post per side otherwise!

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Yeah. Other than the ‘memoir’ tales where i allow myself a bit more room to move, I aim for 1000 words (+/-), as does Joe I believe. But it is very easy to get carried away with enthusiasm! Which is why the #200word challenge was fun.
          BTW, how many of the 1001 have you now done?

          Liked by 1 person

        2. 471 down – but December 1st marks the halfway point of the ’10 years’ – so I’m hoping to get through 30 in the next three months to stay on pace!

          Liked by 2 people

        3. Ten a month, eh? Good luck!

          Liked by 1 person

        4. Sorry I’ve copyrighted the phrase ‘(number) Down’, please desist.

          Liked by 1 person

        5. My legal team is working on a more formal agreement moving forward – for the moment, will I be able to avoid future litigation with the variation ‘(number) Done’?

          Liked by 1 person

        6. Absolutely!

          Liked by 1 person

  2. Nice post, Bruce. Really enjoying these ‘in brief’ posts. This what’s meant by slight return?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Voodoo Chile, Mojo Hand, it’s all juice, eh?

      Liked by 1 person

  3. aussiebyrdbrother · · Reply

    Cool article, Bruce. I remember when I first heard `Phaedra’ (which was the first TDream music I heard, even though I instantly recognised the name) I found it to be rather terrifying! I was in a doctors studio, about to have a laser procedure on my face performed. I was slowly waiting for the sleeping gas to take effect on me, and in my drowsy state, I noticed on a nearby bookcase a small stereo system and a pile of Tangerine Dream albums. The doctor noticed that I was looking at them, and he asked would I like to listen to one while I was drifting off. Thinking T.Dream were a blissful new-age band, I said yes and he popped `Phaedra’ into the CD player. What hit me as I blacked out was very unnerving, frightening and cold alien horror – not a great way to relax in a very uncomfortable state and unfamiliar location!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ah, context is all. Perhaps I’ll offer the hope that next time you listen you might drift away from that, er, discomfort, and towards the chilly/warm ambience of my early listens.

      Like

  4. Wonderful images here, VC. Still can’t quite find the railing with this one but who knows, maybe some velvet mornin’ when I’m straight…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You be Lee, I’ll be Nancy.
      I haven’t forgotten your musing about ‘acoustic electronic’ music from ages ago, Vic. Periodically when listening to something in the swishy genre I wonder what might have the grunt to grab ya. Still wondering, though Zombi spring to mind…

      Like

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