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PROGRESSIVE ELECTRONIC

A Progressive Rock Sub-genre


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Progressive Electronic definition

Born in the late 60's after the expansion of avant-gardist, modern, post-modern and minimalist experimentation, the progressive electronic movement immediately guides us into a musical adventure around technologies and new possibilities for composition. As an author or a searcher, the musician often creates his own modules and electronic combinations, deciding his own artistic and musical action. The visionary works of Stockhausen, Subotnick, John Cage ("concrete" music, electro-acoustic experimentation), La Monte Young, Steve Reich, Terry Riley (minimal, micro-tonal music) express a vision of total reconstruction in the current musical world. Luminous works such as "A Rainbow in Curved Air" (1967) and "Silver Apples of the Moon" (1967) bring an inflexion on opened forms and new ways to explore the essence and the physical aspects of sounds (through time and space). "Static" textures, collages & long running sounds, the power of technology previously exposed in ambitious classical works will have a major impact in "popular" electronic music.

After the artisan & innovative uses of magnetic tapes, feedback, microphones, etc., the instrumental synthesis, the elaboration of global sound forms and the psycho-acoustic interactions will be sublimated thanks to the launch of the analog synth. A great improvement happened in 1964 with the appearance of the first modular synthesiser (Moog). This material (or "invention") brings the answer to the technological aspirations of many musicians, mainly after the release of the popular "Switched on Bach" (Walter Carlos) and Mother Mallard's portable masterpiece (pieces composed between 1970-73).

At the beginning of popular essays in electronica, the pioneering technologies (in term of recording and sound transmission) will not be abandoned. For instance, "Tone Float" (1969) by Organisation (pre-Kraftwerk), "Zwei Osterei" & "Klopzeichen" (1969-70) by Kluster and "Irrlicht" (1972) by Klaus Schulze will carry on the domestication of the electric energy and the use of refined harmoniums, organs and echo machines. During the 70's decade, European groups & musicians such as Eno, Kraftwerk and Tangerine Dream will make their name in the music industry thanks to an abundant use of analog synthesisers and original electronic combinations. After weird, mysterious experimentation on conventional acoustic & electric instruments, Kraftwerk enjoyed huge success in popular music thanks to "mechanical electronic pop music". "Trans Europe Express" (1977) and "The Man Machine" (1978) figure as two commercial classics. The German spacey electronic scene launched by Tangerine Dream with their outstanding "Alpha Centauri" (1971) and Cluster "I" & "II" (1971-72) will have echoes everywhere, starting from the Berlin underground electronic scene (the Berlin School) with Klaus Schulze ("Timewind" 1974), Michael Hoenig ("Departure from the Northern Wasteland" 1978), Ashra ("New Age of Earth" 1976), Conrad Schnitzler's buzz-drones and repetitive electronics ("Zug", "Blau", Gold" 1972-74) . After several innovations always from Germany we notice the dark, doomy atmospheric manifests of Nekropolis (Peter Frohmader) in "Le culte des Goules" (1981), Asmus Tietchens in his colourful and engaged "Biotop" (1981) and the semi-ambient "Hermeneutic Music" (1988) by Lars Troschen (sound sculptor and synthesist).

In France, the "hypnotic" and "propulsive" electronic essays of Heldon ("Electronic Guerrilla" 1974) and Lard Free ("Spiral Malax"1977) introduce an inclination for industrial, urban and post-modern sound projections. The French "avant gardist" Philippe Besombes takes back the inspiration of " concrete music" (Pierre Henry.) and mixes it to a hybrid rocking universe (published in 1973, "Libra" figures as a true classic). Bernard Xolotl in "Prophecy" (1981), "Procession" / "Last Wave" (1983), Zanov (Green Ray, 1976) and Didier Bocquet (Voyage cerebral, 1978) will follow the musical path anticipated by Klaus Schulze in his kosmische electronic symphonies.

At the end of the 70's until the debut of the 80's Albums as "ambient 1: Music for Airports" (Brian Eno), "Cluster & Eno", "Deluxe" (Hans Joachim Roedelius side project called Harmonia) will announce the emergence of the famous ambient movement, musically characterised by gorgeous shimmering atmospheric textures.

During the 80's, Maurizio Bianchi will be in search of the absolute industrial "post-nuclear" sound tapestry. His visionary musical experience is based on cyclical loops, abrasive concrete noises and vertiginous piano dreamscapes. ("Symphony for a Genocide" 1981 and recently the mesmerising "A.M.B Iehn Tale" 2005). Before M.B and the industrial-bruitist wave, the 70's Italian specialists of electronic experiments had been (among others) Francesco Cabiati (Mirage, 1979), Francesco Bucherri (Journey, 1979), and Francesco Messina for representative, lyrical and spacey orchestrations and also Futuro Antica (D'ai primitivi all'elettronica, 1980) or Telaio Magnetico (Live' 75) for tripped out minimalism.

In the early 1980s and after following the kosmische path of classic Klaus Schulze, The Bay Area / Los Angeles school of electronic created the so called "alchemical" / "Sacred" space music. The music offers a dynamic combination between ancient-traditional music of the West and synthesised sonic soundscapes. The most representative artists of this movement are Michael Stream (Lyra Sound Constellation, 1983) Robert Rich (Numena, 1987) and Steve Roach (Dreamtime Return, 1988).

In the early 80s Ian Boddy (Spirits, 1984 / Phoenix, 1986) and Mark Shreeve (Assassin, 1983 / Legion, 1984) unique spacedout synthesised sagas represented the british answer to the challenging Berlin kosmische school. Their music embodies timbral drone sequences, systematic arpeggiations and synth-pop textures.

Young contemporary bands and artists in electronic experimentation took their inspiration from the 70's "kosmische" analog synth psychedelica of Klaus Schulze, Conrad Schnitzler, Tangerine Dream, etc. In the spaced out synthesisers spectrum, modern Japanese artists as Yamazaki Maso (noisy avant garde experimentor who contributes to the Kawabata's projects named Andromelos, Christina 23 onna and Father Moo & the Black sheeps) or Takushi Yamazaki (Space Machine) are key figures. The minimal, moody / lysergic epic soundscapes of Omit (Clinton Williams), Cloudland Canyon, Astral social club or Zombi also contribute to the renewal of the "cosmic" synth genre. Many modern electronic artists have taken an original musical direction, surfing on post-krautrock ambient waves (Aethenor), on spherical "abstract" ambient minimalism (Pete Namlook, Biosphere, Robert Henke) or on trancey, (post) industrial drone hypnosis (Alio Die / Amon / Nimh for the italian side and Andrew Chalk with his respective projects Mirror, Monos and Ora).

To sum up things, the progressive electronic subgenre is dedicated to intricate, moving, cerebral, intrusive electronic experiences that get involved in "kosmische", dark ambient, (post) industrial, droning, surreal or impressionist soundscapes territories.

Philippe BLACHE


The responsibility for the psych/space, indo/raga, krautrock and prog electronic subgenres is taken by the PSIKE team,
currently consisting of
- Sheavy
- Meltdowner
- siLLy puPPy
- Rivertree


Progressive Electronic Top Albums


Showing only studios | Based on members ratings & PA algorithm* | Show Top 100 Progressive Electronic | More Top Prog lists and filters

4.25 | 810 ratings
RUBYCON
Tangerine Dream
4.26 | 243 ratings
MIRAGE
Schulze, Klaus
4.56 | 27 ratings
CATCH WAVE
Kosugi, Takehisa
4.21 | 236 ratings
TIMEWIND
Schulze, Klaus
4.14 | 685 ratings
PHAEDRA
Tangerine Dream
4.18 | 123 ratings
EPSILON IN MALAYSIAN PALE
Froese, Edgar
4.12 | 213 ratings
X
Schulze, Klaus
4.26 | 43 ratings
AN ELECTRIC STORM
White Noise
4.36 | 27 ratings
IN COURSE OF TIME
Zanov
4.25 | 42 ratings
GREEN RAY
Zanov
4.04 | 157 ratings
AMBIENT 4 - ON LAND
Eno, Brian
4.23 | 33 ratings
ALIO DIE & LORENZO MONTANA: HOLOGRAPHIC CODEX
Alio Die
4.55 | 14 ratings
ARCHITEXTURE OF SILENCE
Alpha Wave Movement
4.22 | 33 ratings
LUCIFER RISING (OST)
Beausoleil, Bobby
4.15 | 46 ratings
INTEGRATI... DISINTEGRATI
Leprino, Franco
4.14 | 48 ratings
FILAMENTS
Rich, Robert
4.01 | 164 ratings
NEW AGE OF EARTH
Ashra
3.98 | 402 ratings
FORCE MAJEURE
Tangerine Dream
3.98 | 284 ratings
ANOTHER GREEN WORLD
Eno, Brian
3.95 | 329 ratings
THE MAN-MACHINE [AKA: DIE MENSCH-MASCHINE]
Kraftwerk

Progressive Electronic overlooked and obscure gems albums new


Random 4 (reload page for new list) | As selected by the Progressive Electronic experts team

HATHOR
Wakhevitch, Igor
DEN GĹTFULLA MÄNNISKAN
Malmberg, Eric
WUNDERBAR
Riechmann, Wolfgang
TIME REPLICATED
Bownik, Adam Certamen

Latest Progressive Electronic Music Reviews


 Green Ray by ZANOV album cover Studio Album, 1976
4.25 | 42 ratings

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Green Ray
Zanov Progressive Electronic

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

5 stars This was love at first listen. ZANOV was the project of one Pierre Zalkazanov out of France and this was his debut from 1976. This is one of those Electronic albums that ticks all the right boxes for me. I really like the melancholic mood throughout and how darn spacey it is. We do get sequencers too at times but man this is just the perfect Electronic album for me. It's interesting how I have never been able to get into the more famous French Electronic artist in Jean- Michel Jarre, I find his music is light and poppy in comparison to this dark beauty, and I'm not surprised Jarre is more popular because of this.

"Green Ray" certainly starts off on the right foot with those spacey winds blowing over top of the other synths that form a base here. Sequencers kick in at 3 minutes giving this a different vibe for sure as the spacey winds die down. This is still really good though and those spacey winds do return.

"Machine Desperation" has this electronic beat with some incredible spacey sounds over top. That beat becomes more of the focus 3 minutes in as the spacey sounds continue over top. This is dramatic, then the loud beats calm down a minute later. I really like those spacey winds but as I listen closely I dig how it continually changes slightly over it's 10 minute length.

"Running Beyond The Dream" is the almost 20 minute side long closer. Distant sounds pulse, twitter and drift as it builds. It settles back but then turns louder after 4 minutes. After 5 1/2 minutes it's quiet, too quiet, but this song continues to evolve and change. Another quiet section 10 1/2 minutes in then it's louder at 15 minutes. I love how spacey it gets 17 minutes in.

This ranks right up there with some of my favourite RADIO MASSACRE INTERNATIONAL albums, it's that good.

 Transparent (as Zos Kia / Coil) by COIL album cover Studio Album, 1984
3.00 | 1 ratings

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Transparent (as Zos Kia / Coil)
Coil Progressive Electronic

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE & JR/F/Canterbury Teams

— First review of this album —
3 stars After COIL released their debut album "Scatology" in 1984, they quickly released a collection of their earliest primal and mind- altering sonic experiments from the early 80s from the brief time when they would be closely connected with yet another errant electronic band Zos Kia, a project of John Gosling which was an offshoot of John Balance's Psychic TV. The two groups were essentially the same at this point separated in identity only by name showing the complex revolving door policies of the early industrial sound collage movement in the early 80s. These tracks on this only album to be released with the ZOS KIA moniker attached contain some of the most horrific sounds ever to be recorded onto tape with bombilations so utterly unsettling that i can not think of another album that exudes the primal essence of fear and so successful delves deep into the psyche of the listener to locate the ultimate sonic methodology for evoking intense discomfiture.

Originally released by Nekrophile only on the cassette format, the collection would finally find a home on CD in 1997 (with a different track order) by Threshold House and in 1998 Eskaton would reissue a vinyl edition. Finally in 2016 these rough drafts of soundtracks for nightmares would undergo a remastering and released by Cold Spring with two bonus tracks that were recorded by the pre-ZOS KIA noisemakers AKE and show a glimpse of the live underground event played at the Equinox event on June 21, 1983. TRANSPARENT is a bona fide history lesson in the errant nihilistic origins of COIL when they existed side by side on various Rising From The Red Sand compilations with other avant-garde electronically leaning artists like Nurse With Wound, Attrition, Konstruktivists, Lustmord and the Legendary Pink Dots. Likewise these recordings point to the antecedents of COIL's rather eccentric and occult interests and how they relay them in sonic form which continued throughout their multi-decade career which include wax cylinder recordings of Aleister Crowley and inspiration from his disciples especially Austin Osman Spare.

After the somewhat synthpop oriented debut "Scatology" that showed a slightly normal side of COIL, the collection of tracks on TRANSPARENT is downright frightening in comparison. Although some tracks like "Rape" (titled "Violation" on original release) would find their home in a new packaging on a future album (can't pinpoint it), most of these tracks are non-musical and focus more on rhythmic bursts of noise punctuated by intense spoken manifestos or psychotic keyboard deliveries that makes most horror soundtrack music seem like a walk through Disneyland. In sync with the chaos that is the discography of COIL, some tracks are solely credited to COIL, some solely to ZOS KIA and others to both while the bonus tracks are credited to the earlier KIA outfit AKE. Often referred to as monochrome psychedelia, TRANSPARENT even utilizes of all kinds of freaky everyday noises to scare the bejesus out of you. The track "Silence And Sorcery" for example is nothing more than a background of rhythmic crickets chirping with industrial noises randomly jumping from the abyss to signify their presence.

Listening to TRANSPARENT is a journey into the darkest recesses of the mind that captures the most disconcerting sonic amalgamation of factors that create an aura of shock and awe. While COIL would continue on to add more musical elements to their unique style of psychic torture, they would continue to employ many of the same non-musical elements that were laid out at this early stage with some of these tracks being cannibalized and used for sound effects in later offerings. TRANSPARENT is an interesting historical artifact that clearly lays out the antecedents of COIL's ascension into the industrial underground and also displays the less than clear delineation between all the affiliated groups and sub-groups that existed in the fluid world of John Balance and Peter Christopherson. TRANSPARENT is a must for those who crave the shadowy sonic expressions of the underground industrial world of the early 1980s when strange new unthinkable sound combinations were codifying a new "musical" movement that would find more prominence a decade later but for the uninitiated this could be considered a sonic assault that may leave them shivering under their sheets for days.

3.5 rounded down

 Underwater Sunlight by TANGERINE DREAM album cover Studio Album, 1986
3.82 | 155 ratings

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Underwater Sunlight
Tangerine Dream Progressive Electronic

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Considering the sheer mass of material Tangerine Dream cranked out in the 1980s between studio albums, live albums, soundtracks and archival releases, it's easy to feel swamped by it all, and there's some justification to the idea that Edgar Froese and his cohorts spread themselves too thin. Underwater Sunlight, however, is a highlight of their mid-1980s torrent of material, with Froese and Paul Haslinger trading soaring guitar solos over an impeccably composed and produced synthesiser backing. It's a bit New Age in terms of both theme and execution, but if all New Age music were like this then we'd be lucky, lucky listeners.
 Blue (Jack Hertz & Wolfgang Gsell) by HERTZ, JACK album cover Studio Album, 2017
4.00 | 1 ratings

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Blue (Jack Hertz & Wolfgang Gsell)
Jack Hertz Progressive Electronic

Review by Aussie-Byrd-Brother
Special Collaborator Rock Progressivo Italiano Team

— First review of this album —
4 stars Electronic sound experimentalist Jack Hertz could never be called predictable, and along with numerous solo releases to date throughout 2017, each completely different to the last, he has also found time for some fascinating collaborations. Equally inspired ambient/electronic artist Wolfgang Gsell has previously teamed with Jack on several occasions (the most recent being back in January with the superior and intelligent `Sleeping Trees on Earth' disc in conjunction with the Trees for the Future project), and here they deliver an ode to the great blue bodies of water that cover a large majority of our planet. Thankfully we're not talking some bland new-age release with pretty and comfy acoustic guitar strums around lapping water sounds, instead `Blue' is a hypnotic fusion of immersive prog-electronic and enveloping ambient that somehow remains accessible without becoming too lightweight or insubstantial.

On the opening nineteen-minute title track `Blue', the pair weave a shimmering crystalline soundscape of undulating electronic caresses, full of lulling ambient rise-and-falls, fuzzy pulses and twitching, unravelling washes with only the faintest of percussive teases flitting in and out, mostly relegated to the final minutes. There's almost a drowsy, more subdued (submerged?!) take on the soloing-heavy approach of Klaus Schulze on his early Seventies works throughout, and some darker twists near the climax, but overall the languid atmospheres take on an blanketing bliss that stretches on for eternity.

`Ripples' is a relatively punchy interlude in comparison between the two near-twenty minute bookending pieces of the disc, where pristine electric piano ruminations ring with mystery around hypnotic electronic fuzziness, and some sparse programmed beats help ground the piece into a more compact arrangement that stops it drifting into pure ambient breezes. Hallucinogenic closer `Tides' invites complete immersion, a slow to unfold spacey sweep of unceasing approaching/retreating liquid caresses that lap around fizzing synth ripples and serene cascading swirls.

It might still be a little too freeform and directionless for some prog-electronic listeners, but the album refuses to grind to a halt by settling into static drones, and is too full of colourful movement to be mistaken for solely airy ambient music. Both Jack Hertz and Wolfgang Gsell are too clever the artists to deliver something so predictable or obvious, and instead they present `Blue' as a lightly psychedelic, completely encompassing and mellow dreamy soundtrack to float away to.

Four stars.

 Carbon/Core by LUSTMORD album cover Studio Album, 2004
3.50 | 4 ratings

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Carbon/Core
Lustmord Progressive Electronic

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Lustmord's general approach seemed to have been locked in by The Place Where the Black Stars Hang, and Carbon/Core is largely a continuation of that. There is, of course, a question of just how unnerved and spooked out you can be by dark ambient music when you have largely come to expect you're going to hear, but then again just as there is the fear of the unexpected - the jump scare, the awful revelation, and so on - there is also a fear of the expected. You know that this is going to be a dark trip through cyberpunk hell, but you listen anyway - because it's just that good.
 Hyperborea by TANGERINE DREAM album cover Studio Album, 1983
3.48 | 193 ratings

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Hyperborea
Tangerine Dream Progressive Electronic

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Tangerine Dream's stint at Virgin had seen them transition from the psychedelic electronic pioneers of their early days to the sleek, technologically advanced unit poised to absolutely glut the market with material over the course of the 1980s, particularly through their soundtrack efforts. All snark aside, though, this is one of the better Tangerine Dream albums of the 1980s; like Exit and Thief, it's very much a product of their new post-transition sound, but it's one of the more gorgeous and intricate examples of it, and the production standards have hold up well to this very day. A fascinating electronic trip, with a mysterious, awe-inspiring atmosphere - like the soundtrack to a documentary about a lost civilisation that never existed.
 Cosmic Ground Live by COSMIC GROUND album cover Live, 2017
4.00 | 3 ratings

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Cosmic Ground Live
Cosmic Ground Progressive Electronic

Review by Rivertree
Special Collaborator PSIKE Team & Band Submissions

4 stars COSMIC GROUND marks a progressive electronic studio and solo project actually. And so for one or two it may be a big surprise to notice, that on both occasions, from where this live recordings are taken, Dirk Jan MĂźller moreover will be accompanied by Horst Porkert on synths, who is also known for driving the German Sunhair label. Everything sounds harmonic, so much for the start. You should notice, I never had a considerable relation to pure electronic live concerts. There is a die hard fan base given of course, regarding The Netherlands too. So they once participated at E-Live Festival in Oirschot, a venue with reputation. At least the first song can be clearly associated to this gig.

Five improvisations are available in total, where Anomaly seems to be a bonus, solely when it comes to the digital download option. The rest is ideally designed for a double vinyl release. Adansonia Records have taken this task again. Dark Enck and Unground I (hey, ridiculous, I'm always reading 'Underground') are similiar in execution. The very start goes to the melancholic mellotron. Though this is sooner or later evolving into an extended partition of somewhat rhythmic sequencer loops. A very hypnotic affair in both cases. Sounding like accompanied by tribal percussion Cairo Grind in principle continues on this path.

With Unground II it's all changing to a more key driven sound. It feels like I'm underway in deeper and darker realms now, like undertaking a deep-sea expedition and being faced with odd creatures hereby. You may really sense the water pressure in some way. Man! What an atmosphere! Have you ever been to an oceanographic museum? Perfectly matching background music, especially when arriving at the darkest and deepest ground. This album mirrors a well made, mostly relaxed and laid back performance, spiked with common references to Klaus Schulze respectively Tangerine Dream. Not an everyday case of course ... when you're in the mood to release yourself for some time, and this ideally supported by headphones, a wonderful experience is guaranteed. As Dirk turns out to be a master of building suspense levels.

 Particles by TANGERINE DREAM album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 2016
3.00 | 1 ratings

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Particles
Tangerine Dream Progressive Electronic

Review by Vinyl Connection

— First review of this album —
3 stars The album opens with '4.00 Session'. It's an epic, a pulsing, sweeping, hypnotic journey in the grand TD tradition of Phaedra or Stratosfear. But whereas the average length of a 70s Dream-side was seventeen minutes, '4.00pm Session' clocks in at almost half-an- hour. Although it is interesting and enjoyable throughout, there is a vague sense of absence, of something missing; '4.00 Session' is like a well developed draft, just waiting for a little injection of magic?a flash of melody here or a piercing guitar jab there?to elevate it to greatness. Perhaps what is missing is Edgar Froese, that's what I think as I flip the record for side two.

Two pieces here, a reworking of 'Rubycon' (17:25) that opens with some experimental sounds before settling into the classic analogue pulse. It's great, if not revelatory. Then a fair dinkum cover version, the theme from "Stranger Things". Well done, sure, but, er, why?

The second LP is a live set, recorded in concert at Schwingungen Festival+ in 2016. It is a kind of brief introduction to post-seventies Tangerine Dream, offering nicely crafted performances of a selection of TD pieces:

"Mothers of Rain" from Optical Race (1988)

"Power of the Rainbow Serpent" from Mala Kunia (2014)

"White Eagle" from the album of the same name (1982)

"Dolphin Dance" from Underwater Sunlight (1986)

"Shadow and Sun" also from Mala Kunia (2014)

It's well done, all of it. Yet somehow you feel like you are listening to a very accomplished Tangerine Dream Tribute act. In fact, that's the feel of the whole set. Something tentative about claiming the name; some missing adventurousness maybe. As a tribute, it's fine, but Particles is marking time.

Schnauss, Quaeschning and Yamane have done a sterling job of creating an homage to their fallen leader, but if they want to really breathe life into the brand name they need to be bold, to move out of the master's shadow without abandoning his legacy. They need to integrate the particles of Froese's vision into their own manifest skills. There is absolutely no doubt this trio is capable of that feat. Let's hope they give it a go.

[Edited version of a review that appeared at the Vinyl Connection blog. Review copy: vinyl 2xLP, released June 2017]

 Phaedra by TANGERINE DREAM album cover Studio Album, 1974
4.14 | 685 ratings

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Phaedra
Tangerine Dream Progressive Electronic

Review by Luqueasaur

4 stars Like a snow cyborg, cold and robotic: 8/10

I'll be honest: I never liked electronic music. I have always associated it, on its entirety, to EDM - almost like bigotry -, which in turn alienated me from exploring it further. It was a shocker to discover how old and prolific electronic music is, not to mention the fact that - behold! - EDM isn't electronic music's only branch, let alone its most influential (at least on evolutionary terms). This review, then, is from the mind of a layman first introduced to this.

The first thing I noticed as I discovered TANGERINE DREAM is how groundbreaking their music was for their time. I wasn't surprised, especially after listening. I assume that, especially on their epoch, this unconventional stuff was an eerie sight. There are no riffs, no sections, no structure. This makes PHAEDRA entirely cold, robotic, experimentative; a lifeless tool. I don't see this as a problem though, because electricity is by default lifeless, and electronic music's proposition has never been to create "impacting, heartfelt melodies". However, it's not "artless" rabble like EDM. PHAEDRA has a purpose, originality, it has no life just like EDM but it's not a repetitive, meaningless bunch of artificial noises put together to make people mindlessly dance to.

PHAEDRA, generally, is cold and rather indifferent. As I said, it's experimentative, and it bases itself mostly on central "melodic pieces" (consider this a synonym of "proto-riff") sprinkled with countless effects. I'll go more specific on each track down below.

Phaedra sounds "futuristic", rushed, nervous and even dark. Look at the album cover: it is a mysterious, abstract object. Just like Phaedra's sound. It feels distant, in distraught, "uncertain". I imagined a foggy, snowy and dense forest as I listened to this. This rather creepy imagery doesn't make the song uninteresting or aversive, au contrair, it's an attraction. The first part features an up-tempo bass-y keyboard arpeggio (that consists the "melodic piece") whose limelight is often stolen by countless different electronic effects that overlap it. The second part is chilly, as if you just entered a huge, dimly lit cathedral, and you can hear the environment's quietude, the immensity's silent ambience. There is also this weird effect that sounds like a dog's high-pitched whine. Highly anxious and intense, it's a definitely interesting song.

Mysterious Semblance At The Strand Of Nightmare is symphonic and immersive. Whatever is the disturbance that made Phaedra so uneasy has been deal with, and now things are calmer. While it sounds cozier, like a choral, I enjoyed better the previous track's constant intervention of effects that broke the sound's stillness. It made it more dynamic. I also find the title rather ironic, considering the ominous image brought is not fitting for the track. "Choir of Angels In An Empty Forest", at least as I see it, kind of is.

Movements Of A Visionary focus most of its three first minutes on distorted rattling effects that sounds more often than not like a sack of pearls being stirred, chirping insects on a dense jungle, a maddened xylophone, and a locomotive's movement. The second part swaps to a more "conventional" sonority, abandoning part. It features a sweet duet of Phaedra's first section's arpeggio and a hymnal organ (shyly present in the first section). I like to imagine this section as a crystalline, translucent composition crafted on a sparkling ice castle under a boreal night. t breaks the album's hitherto electronic experimentation approach, sounding more like musical logic. Its variated, melodic and immersive experimentation convinced me to adopt it as my favorite track from the album.

Sequent C''s , for me, is in-between synthesized Japanese-esque flutes and electronic violin. It's enigmatic, meditative, faraway. I think it's too short though, it had potential on becoming something interesting.

In conclusion, I enjoyed this experience. I wasn't expecting it to be nearly as pleasing as it was, considering my - now extinct - prejudice for electronic music. I believe this is a great introduction for laypeople. Important to note is that PHAEDRA's frostiness might be harsh to embrace, so more than a single listen will be necessary. Afterwards, it'll not feel warmer, but you'll learn to enjoy the cold.

 Privée (with U.S.O.) by SCHULZE, KLAUS album cover Boxset/Compilation, 2016
3.98 | 6 ratings

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Privée (with U.S.O.)
Klaus Schulze Progressive Electronic

Review by Aussie-Byrd-Brother
Special Collaborator Rock Progressivo Italiano Team

4 stars 2016's `Privée' originally appeared sixteen years earlier on a long-deleted boxset from German electronic music pioneer Klaus Schulze entitled `Contemporary Works', which saw the early Krautrock notable collaborating with guitarist Razoof Lear and drummer Olli Finken, two members of a Cologne DJ/music collective Solar Moon System. The trio deliver a cool instrumental set of lengthy modern-meets-vintage pieces that fuse everything from dub, ambient, trip-hop and chilled electronica to Schulze's more expected unhurried Berlin School electronic atmospheres, making it hardly an example of a vintage master lazily stuck in a rut and merely remaking his past.

This reissue opens with `The Keyhole', a short and moody solo ambient drone from the master, and Klaus' keys almost take on a spectral choral majesty. It segues right into the nineteen-minute chill-out `Privat', powered by cool trip-hop beats and dreamy electric guitar chimes flitting in and out around Klaus' lush synth caresses. Think along the lines of The Orb crossed with some of the laid-back early Krautrock bands, and the whole pieced is flecked with the lightest of reggae, jazz and psychedelic flavours.

The title track `Privée' is pulsing urgent electronica fuelled by bouncing beats and liquid reaching guitar tendrils weaving throughout, but as it slows down for a reflective and lush ambient finale and several moments where it's laced with searing runaway Mellotron races over skittering sequencer ripples, it quickly reminds of the Schulze of old.

The twenty-five minute `Private' floats through everything from dangerous bleeding synth twitches melting over a pattering of slinking beats and coasts into mellow slithering electronics, and while he doesn't openly solo, moments where Razoof's guitars emerge call to mind Manuel Göttsching's coolest Ashra and solo (E2-E4) moments of ambient dance and loved-up low-key jamming. A short four-minute bonus track `Privatissimo' is also included, and it's another head-bobbing trip-hop saunter that's essentially nothing more than a slight variation on the second track here.

There will be many vintage Berlin School purists who will probably find the whole thing a bit too `trendy' and too far removed from the thick moody atmospheres of the landmark Seventies period, and admittedly there's a couple of stretches where Schulze's contributions seem very low-key. But if you pay close attention to the most subtle of sounds, you'll hear how carefully put together whilst still retaining a vitality and freshness the album is. It's a very respectable modern effort from the German master with the help of some musical collaborators, and just a cool chill-out album overall that makes for a perfect laid-back summer album.

Four stars.

(dedicated to the biggest `Privée' fan I know, David `Guldbamsen', thanks for the recommendation in the first place!

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Progressive Electronic bands/artists list

Bands/Artists Country
12 FOLLOWERS United States
6LA8 Pakistan
ACI Germany
AEON France
AETHENOR Multi-National
AFTERLIFE United States
ILDEFONSO AGUILAR Spain
PEKKA AIRAKSINEN Finland
AIRSCULPTURE United Kingdom
ALBERGO INTERGALATTICO SPAZIALE Italy
ALIO DIE Italy
ALLEGORY CHAPEL LTD United States
DAEVID ALLEN MICROCOSMIC United Kingdom
ALLUSTE Italy
ALPHA WAVE MOVEMENT United States
ALTO STRATUS United Kingdom
AMBER ROUTE United States
AMON Italy
PETER ANDERSSON Sweden
ANDROMELOS Japan
ANNA SJALV TREDJE Sweden
ARC United Kingdom
ARPANET United States
EDWARD ARTEMIEV Russia
ARZATHON Sweden
ASCOIL SUN Finland
ASHRA Germany
THE ASTROBOY Portugal
ATOMINE ELEKTRINE Sweden
AUBE Japan
AUTOMAT Italy
AWENSON France
MARVIN AYRES United Kingdom
HARVEY BAINBRIDGE United Kingdom
AIDAN BAKER Canada
SIMON BALESTRAZZI Italy
BAFFO BANFI Italy
BASS COMMUNION United Kingdom
PETER BAUMANN Germany
BAUMANN/KOEK Germany
BEAR BONES LAY LOW Venezuela
BOBBY BEAUSOLEIL United States
CARLOS BELTRÁN Mexico
LÁSZLÓ BENKő Hungary
PHILIPPE BESOMBES France
BETWEEN INTERVAL Sweden
MAURIZIO BIANCHI Italy
BIG ROBOT Norway
BIOSPHERE Norway
BLACK UNICORN United States
TIM BLAKE France
BLUE MOTION Switzerland
BLUE SAUSAGE INFANT United States
WOLFGANG BOCK Germany
DIDIER BOCQUET France
IAN BODDY United Kingdom
GASTON BORREANI Italy
ADAM CERTAMEN BOWNIK Poland
OLIVIER BRIAND France
MICHAEL BRÜCKNER Germany
FRANCESCO BUCCHERI Italy
HAROLD BUDD United States
MICHAEL BUNDT Germany
FRANCESCO CABIATI Italy
ROBERTO CACCIAPAGLIA Italy
CALDERA United States
TOM CAMERON United States
DALLAS CAMPBELL United States
CELLULOID United States
CELLUTRON & THE INVISIBLE United States
ANDREW CHALK United Kingdom
JOHN CHRISTIAN United Kingdom
CHRISTINE 23 ONNA Japan
CHURCH OF HED United States
THE CIRCULAR RUINS United Kingdom
CLOUDLAND BALLROOM Ireland
CLOUDLAND CANYON United States
CLOUDLAND CANYON/LICHENS United States
COIL United Kingdom
COMA VIRUS Germany
PASCAL COMELADE France
COMPUTERCHEMIST United Kingdom
CON HERTZ Germany
CONTRASTATE United Kingdom
COSMIC DEBRIS United States
COSMIC GROUND Germany
COSMIC HOFFMANN Germany
CRAWL UNIT United States
CREMATOR United Kingdom
CROP CIRCLES France
CROWS LABYRINTH Netherlands
CULTURAL NOISE Austria
FRANCESCO CURRŔ Italy
CYBOTRON Australia
DEAD VOICES ON AIR United Kingdom
DEUTSCHE WERTARBEIT Germany
NICOLAS DICK France
DIN A TESTBILD Germany
DIONNE - BRÉGENT Canada
DOLULUS Switzerland
DR. SPACE'S ALIEN PLANET TRIP Denmark
HEINRICH DRESSEL Italy
E-MUSIKGRUPPE LUX OHR Finland
EARTHSTAR Multi-National
EDEN France
ELEKTRIKTUS Italy
ELICOIDE Italy
EMERALDS United States
J.D EMMANUEL United States
ENDOPLASMIC FLOW Multi-National
BRIAN ENO United Kingdom
ENVENOMIST United States
EXPO 70 United States
F.G EXPERIMENTAL LABORATORY Switzerland
FRANCO FALSINI Italy
FANGER & SCHÖNWÄLDER Germany
FARBFELDE United States
FASER Germany
FATHER MOO & THE BLACK SHEEP Japan
FFWD United Kingdom
FHIEVEL Italy
FIVE THOUSAND SPIRITS Italy
FLAMEN DIALIS France
FORMA United States
FOVEA HEX Ireland
FREE SYSTEM PROJEKT Netherlands
FRIPP & ENO United Kingdom
EDGAR FROESE Germany
PETER FROHMADER Germany
KEITH FULLERTON WHITMAN United States
FUTURO ANTICO Multi-National
GALACTIC EXPLORERS Germany
MICHAEL GARRISON United States
MORT GARSON Canada
GRAHAM GETTY United Kingdom
SACHA GIBSON United Kingdom
BRUCE GILBERT United Kingdom
GIRÓN Spain
MATHIAS GRASSOW Germany
GRAUGLANZ Germany
GREGOR CÜRTEN & ANSELM ROGMANS Germany
RANDY GREIF United States
RAGNAR GRIPPE Sweden
HARALD GROSSKOPF Germany
SVEN GRÜNBERG Estonia
GEORGES GRÜNBLATT France
JEAN GUÉRIN France
CARLOS GUIRAO Spain
BRUCE HAACK Canada
HALL OF MIRRORS Italy
PETER MICHAEL HAMEL Germany
HARMONIA Germany
STEVE HAUSCHILDT United States
HEADSHOCK United Kingdom
TIM HECKER Canada
HELDON France
HEMMELIG TEMPO Norway
ROBERT HENKE Germany
JACK HERTZ United States
MICHAEL HOENIG Germany
HOLLAN HOLMES United States
HORSE PALACE Canada
HARUOMI HOSONO Japan
PETER HOWELL & THE RADIOPHONIC WORKSHOP United Kingdom
EPPIE E. HULSHOF Netherlands
HYDRAVION France
HYDRUS Italy
GIUSEPPE IELASI Italy
INVOLVED United States
IVERSEN Norway
JAZZCOMPUTER.ORG France
JESDAT Spain
JIHEL France
GUSTAVO JOBIM Brazil
EDDIE JOBSON United Kingdom
JONATHAN Germany
ARIEL KALMA Australia
JÜRGEN KARG Germany
KASHMIR Switzerland
KHA - YM France
BERND KISTENMACHER Germany
KITARO Japan
KL(AÜS) Australia
KNITTING BY TWILIGHT United States
KOROIEV Spain
KÖSMONAUT United States
TAKEHISA KOSUGI Japan
ESA KOTILAINEN Finland
KRAFTWERK Germany
MIHA KRALJ Yugoslavia
KLAUS KRÜGER Germany
RICHARD LAINHART United States
LAMBWOOL France
PASCAL LANGUIRAND Canada
LAOZI Georgia
TEDDY LASRY France
STÉPHANE LEMAIRE France
IGOR LEN Russia
FRANCO LEPRINO Italy
LEROUGE France
NED LAGIN & PHIL LESH United States
CECIL LEUTER France
LIGHTWAVE France
LIIR BU FER Italy
LILIENTAL Germany
JOHN LIVENGOOD France
LOGIC GATE United States
LONG DISTANCE POISON United States
LOOM Germany
BERTRAND LOREAU France
RÜDIGER LORENZ Germany
LORQ DAMON United States
LULL United Kingdom
LUNAR MIASMA Greece
TOR LUNDVALL United States
LUSTMORD United States
LYDHODE Norway
BJORN LYNNE Norway
IAN MACFARLANE Australia
MAEROR TRI Germany
MAGINA Portugal
PEPE MAINA Italy
MAJEURE United States
ERIC MALMBERG Sweden
MARIBOR Italy
RUNE MARTINSEN & ŘYSTEIN JŘRGENSEN Norway
ANDREA MARUTTI Italy
MEERKAT Italy
METATAG Norway
EMERSON MEYERS United States
MICKIE D'S UNICORN Germany
CLAUDIO MILANO Italy
DIETER MOEBIUS Germany
MOKSHA United Kingdom
MOLNIJA AURA Italy
CLARA MONDSHINE Germany
MONOTON Austria
GEN KEN MONTGOMERY United States
MOORE / MYERS United States
KEN MOORE United States
STEVE MOORE United States
MORA-TAU Japan
SCOTT MOSHER United States
MOTHER MALLARD'S PORTABLE MASTERPIECE CO. United States
MOUNTAIN OCEAN SUN Japan
MOUNTAINS United States
THE ALMAN MULO BAND United Kingdom
MUSHY Italy
IAN NAGOSKI United States
PETE NAMLOOK Germany
NAUTILUS Germany
NAZI UFO COMMANDER Italy
NEMESIS Finland
NEPTUNE TOWERS Norway
NEURONIUM Spain
NEVER KNOWN Italy
NEWCLEAR WAVES Italy
NIMH Italy
NIMH + M.B Italy
NISUS Belgium
NODE United Kingdom
NUMINA United States
OMIT (CLINTON WILLIAMS) New Zealand
OÖPHOI Italy
OSCILLOTRON Sweden
OSE France
P'COCK Germany
PALADIN United Kingdom
STEPHEN PARSICK Germany
PEAK Australia
PETER M. Italy
PHROZENLIGHT Netherlands
RICHARD PINHAS France
CHRISTOPHE POISSON France
POLE France
BRENDAN POLLARD United Kingdom
TJ PORTER Canada
COLIN POTTER United Kingdom
NIC POTTER United Kingdom
ROGER POWELL United States
DAVID PRESCOTT United States
THE PRESENT MOMENT United States
DAVID PRITCHARD Canada
PROPELLER ISLAND Germany
PRZEMYSLAW RUDZ Poland
PULSE EMITTER United States
PYTHAGORON United States
QUARKS Chile
RADIATION Russia
RADIO MASSACRE INTERNATIONAL United Kingdom
LUTZ RAHN Germany
NIK RAICEVIC United States
RAINBOW GENERATOR Australia
RAINBOW SERPENT Germany
RAISON D'ETRE Sweden
RAPOON United Kingdom
REALTIME Germany
TOM RECCHION United States
REDSHIFT United Kingdom
JONAS REINHARDT United States
ALEJANDRO VILLALÓN RENAUD Mexico
ROBERT RICH United States
RICHARD WAHNFRIED Germany
CHRISTIAN RICHET France
WOLFGANG RIECHMANN Germany
STEVE ROACH United Kingdom
HANS JOACHIM ROEDELIUS Germany
ROGUE SPORE Ireland
THOMAS RONKIN United States
SAB Japan
SAFIYYA United States
SANGIULIANO Italy
SANKT OTTEN Germany
SATAN ALFA BEEL ATEM Japan
SAYER United States
GÜNTER SCHICKERT Germany
SCHLOSS TEGAL United States
CONRAD SCHNITZLER Germany
EBERHARD SCHOENER Germany
ROBERT SCHROEDER Germany
KLAUS SCHULZE Germany
SEESSELBERG Germany
SEQUENTIA LEGENDA France
SERGE RAMSES France
SHOGUN KUNITOKI Finland
MARK SHREEVE United Kingdom
FREDERICH SHULLER Romania
SIJ Ukraine
SIL MUIR Italy
THE SILVERMAN United Kingdom
SINIAALTO Finland
SINOIA CAVES Canada
JAKOB SKŘTT Denmark
SLOWS United Kingdom
SOFTWARE Germany
SONISK BLODBAD Multi-National
SOUNDS OF NEW SOMA Germany
SPACE ALLIANCE Italy
SPACE ART France
SPACE MACHINE Japan
SPACE SWEEPER United States
SPACECRAFT France
SPERM Finland
STARDRIVE United States
MICHAEL STEARNS United States
STELLARDRONE Lithuania
SUBINTERIOR Italy
SURYA KRIS PETERS Germany
SYRINX Canada
JUTA TAKAHASHI Japan
TANGERINE DREAM Germany
TANGRAM Hungary
TELAIO MAGNETICO Italy
DR. FIORELLA TERENZI Italy
THOUGHT GUILD United States
THREE SUNS Austria
THROBBING GRISTLE United Kingdom
ASMUS TIETCHENS Germany
TIPU SABZAWAAR Multi-National
TOMUTONTTU Finland
TÖNEN United States
TONTO'S EXPANDING HEAD BAND United Kingdom
TORTURE GNOSIS Multi-National
TOTAL STATION Russia
TRANCE United States
TRANQUILLITY Germany
TRANSPARENT ILLUSION United Kingdom
ROLF TROSTEL Germany
UDDER MILK DECAY United Kingdom
MATTEO UGGERI Italy
UNATTA United States
URNA Italy
VAKO Spain
VANDERSON Poland
JOEL VANDROOGENBROECK Switzerland
PATRICK VIAN France
VIDNA OBMANA Belgium
VIETGROVE United Kingdom
VLUBÄ Argentina
VOICE OF EYE United States
VOLT Netherlands
ADELBERT VON DEYEN Germany
VON HAULSHOVEN Netherlands
ADRIAN WAGNER United Kingdom
IGOR WAKHEVITCH France
WAVEMAKER United Kingdom
WAVESTAR United Kingdom
PHILLIP WERREN Canada
WHITE NOISE United Kingdom
PATRICK WIKLACZ France
TERJE WINTHER Norway
WINTHERSTORMER Norway
WO0 Serbia
BERNHARD WÖSTHEINRICH Germany
RENÉ VAN DER WOUDEN Netherlands
X-TG United Kingdom
XIU Italy
BERNARD XOLOTL France
YELLOW MAGIC ORCHESTRA Japan
YEN POX United States
YETI RAIN United States
YOU Germany
ZA SIÓDMA GÓRA Poland
EDWARD M. ZAJDA United States
ZALYS France
ZANOV France
ZED France
ZOLTAN United Kingdom
ZOMBI United States
ZORCH United Kingdom
ZOVIET FRANCE United Kingdom
ZYGOAT United States

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