Tangerine Dream - Mars Polaris

Year of Release: 1999
Label: TDI Music
Catalog Number: CD016
Format: CD
Total Time: 70:55:00

I may have said it before, but it seems that a new Tangerine Dream release is out every month. Aside from the reissues of past releases. But, when you create music for soundtracks as well as for yourself, you're bound to generate a lot of material.

So, the Tangerine Dream review for this month is (one of) their latest - Mars Polaris. Mars has almost always been a subject of mystery or speculation - one could name half a dozen authors from this decade alone, I'm sure. And, with our recent explorations, the Red Planet's profile has gone up dramatically.

The ten sonic explorations that Tangerine Dream explore on this disc are, in some ways, more of the same. In this case, I'm meaning a good thing. Edgar and Jerome Froese have become so good at this, so adept at their programming, that performance is no longer an issue. Obviously, though, in a recorded setting, if you miss fire a sequence, you can rewind and start over. It would be interesting to see, because I haven't, if their precision and synchronicity hold up in a live setting.

"Comet's Figure Head" begins things with the sonic representation of a comet coming closer and closer, the burnoff trailing behind it. It's an interesting effect as the music gradually builds.

"Astrophobia" is unlike any of the other tracks on this disk, as it sounds more like Future Sound of London or Spacetime Continuum. It is processed percussion with an almost techno feel, while keyboard phrases dance over it. This is an active and energizing track.

On "track name," there is a keyboard phrase that reminds me very much of ex-Tangerine Dreamer Christopher Franke's Babylon 5 soundtrack work - that deep, throaty tone he gets is the same here. Unconscious or a tip of the hat, I don't know. But, given Mars played a big part in that series...and this album is about Mars...the latter is likely.

And, could "Outland (The Colony)" be a reference to the Sean Connery vehicle nearly 20 years ago? (though I don't recall Mars playing a part in that movie). [Perhaps it was an uncredited cameo? -ed.].

This is a great package, from the photos in the booklet to the simple but elegant cover (with gold-leaf like letter not visible in the reproduction above). Obviously, the photos inside are of Mars, but also of spacecraft such as the Mars Polar Lander (one of 'em may, in fact, be an artist's rendering). Plus, the package includes Mars facts and Mars Polar Lander facts.

Plus, the Froeses have written a short piece on the Martian Seal - the Mon Olympus Seal, a feature on the planet's surface.

This is an excellent and lush album, though there are a few cold, overly processed moments. Recommended.

Comet's Figure Head (10:02) / Rim of Schiaparelli (6:15) / Pilots of the Ether Belt (10:15) / Deep Space Cruiser (4:42) / Outland (The Colony) (9:15) / Spiral Star Date (6:13) / Mars Mission Counter (5:45) / Astrophobia (9:57) / Tharsis Maneuver (4:31) / Dies Martis (TransMercury) (4:00)

Edgar and Jerome Froese

Electronic Meditation (1970)
Alpha Centauri (1971)
Zeit (Largo In 4 Movements) (1972)
Atem (1973)
Phaedra (1974)
Rubycon (1975)
Ricochet (1975)
Sorcerer (1975/1993)
Stratosfear (1976)
Encore (1977)
Cyclone (1978)
Force Majeure (1979)
Tangram (1980)
Exit (1981)
Quichotte (1981) (Germany only; live LP, see Pergamon)
Tangerine Dream '70-'80 (1980) (4 LPs)
White Eagle (1982)
Thief (1982)
Logos - Live At The Dominion (1983)
Wavelength (1983)
Hyperborea (1983)
Risky Business (1983)
Poland - The Warsaw Concert (1984)
Firestarter (1984)
Flashpoint (1984/1995)
Heartbreakers (1985/1995)
Le Parc (1985)
Legend (1985/1995)
Pergamon - Live At The Palast Der Republik (1985) (same as Quichotte)
Shy People (1985)
Dream Sequence (1985) (3 LPs)
Green Desert (1986) (recorded in 1973)
Underwater Sunlight (1986)
The Collection (1987) In the Beginning (1986) (6 LPs)
Near Dark (1987)
Three O'clock High (1987)
Canyon Dreams (1988/1991)
Tyger (1988)
Live Miles (1988)
Dead Solid Perfect (1988)
Optical Race (1988)
Lily On The Beach (1989)
Miracle Mile (1989)
Melrose (1990)
Destination Berlin (1990)
The Man Inside (1990)
Rockoon (1992)
Deadly Care (1992)
220 Volt Live (1993)
Turn Of The Tides (1994)
Catch Me If You Can (1994)
Tyranny Of Beauty (1995)
Zoning (1995)
The Dream Mixes (1995/1998)
The Dream Mixes (1996) (Special UK release)
Goblin's Club (1996/2004)
TimeSquare - Dream Mixes II (1997)
Tournado Live (1997)
The Keep (1997)
Ambient Monkeys (1998)
Atlantic Walls (1998)
Atlantic Bridges (1998)
Dream Encores (1998)
The Hollywood Years Vol. I (1998) (unreleased material)
The Hollywood Years Vol. II (1998) (unreleased material)
Oasis Soundtrack (1998)
Quinoa Extended (1998) (ext. ver. of fanclub only CD)
Transsiberia (1998)
Valentine Wheels (Live In London 1997) (1999)
Sohoman (Live In Sydney 1982) (1999)
What A Blast (1999) (except USA)
Architecture In Motion (1999) (What A Blast USA)
Mars Polaris (1999)
Great Wall Of China (1999) Tang-go (2000)
Soundmill Navigator (2000)
Antique Dreams (2000) (comp)
The Seven Letters From Tibet (2000)
I-Box (2000)
Dream Mixes 3 - The Past Hundred Moons (2001)
Inferno (1st Part of Dante Alighieri's 'La Divina Commedia' (2002)
The Melrose Years (2003) (Re-recordings of Optical Race, Lily On The Beach and Melrose)
Mota Atma (2003)
Dream Mixes 4 - DM4 (2004)
Rockface (Live In Berkeley 1988) (2004)
Purgatorio (2nd Part of Dante Alighieri's 'La Divina Commedia') (2004)
East (Live In East Berlin 1990) (2004)
Arizona (Live In Scottsdale 1992) (2004)
Rocking Mars (Live At Klangart Festval 1999) (2005)
Jeanne D'Arc (2005)
Paradiso (3rd Part of Dante Alighieri's 'La Divina Commedia') (2005)
Phaedra 05 (2005)
Blue Dawn (2006)
Paradiso (2006)
TD Plays TD (2006)
Summer In Nagasaki (2007)
Cyberjam Collection (2007)
Ocean Waves Collection (2007)
Bells Of Accra (ep) (2007)

Canyon Dreams (VID/DVD) (1987)
Three Phase (VID) (1992)
The Video Dream Mixes (VID/DVD) (1996)
Oasis (VID/DVD) (1996)
Luminous Visions (VID+CD/DVD+CD) (1998)
Architecture In Motion/What A Blast! (VID/DVD) (1999)
L'Inferno 1911 (DVD) (2004)
Dante's Inferno (DVD) (2006)
Tempodrome Live Concert 2006 (DVD)
35th Phaedra Anniversary Concert Live In London At The Shephard's Bush Empire 11th June 2005 (DVD) (2007)
Madcap's Flaming Duty (DVD+CD) (2007)
London Astoria Live Concert 2007 (2007)

Genre: Electronic

Origin DE

Added: October 18th 1999
Reviewer: Stephanie Sollow
Artist website: www.tangerinedream-music.com
Hits: 1087
Language: english


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