Thursday, June 17, 2010

Typer At The Gates Of Dawn

Greetings Sky Children! Our celebrations of the oncoming High Holy Day continues unabated!

Today we've a special guest who's been a long-time friend & music confrere, Andy C. from Reading, England. Our mutual love of The Soundtrack of Our Lives, among many other bands, brought us together and over the years we've shared more than a few tips betwixt & between ourselves. Only natural then that at some point we'd turn to him to write us a piece for this feature known as Typer At The Gates Of Dawn.

Read, savor & heed, friends!

Kaleidoscope'Tangerine Dream'(Fontana)

Along with Piper at the Gates of Dawn, Kaleidoscope's astonishing debut is, for me, the benchmark by which to compare all UK psych; and just like Piper it is steeped in colourful characters, childlike whimsy and wonder aplenty. Oh, and some of the most memorable songs you're ever likely to encounter. Put simply, this is a bloody wonderful album.

I still recall hearing it for the very first time: An epiphanic moment, courtesy of a decidedly muddy-sounding cassette picked up at a record fair in those pre-reissue days of 1986. Tangerine Dream's spellbinding qualities and crystalline beauty cut a considerable swathe through the sonic sludge of that nth-generation TDK dub.

That clear-as-a-bell production; Peter Daltrey's characteristic enunciation; guitarist Eddy Pumer's deft tricks and flicks both electrically and acoustically; a set of songs which, had there been any kind of justice in the world, would have been hummed by millions and blasted from radios far and wide........I could go on and on (and I usually do whenever the subject of TD arises), but space here is at a premium and quite honestly you're far better off spending your time listening to this wondrous creation than reading my blather. Go on, do it!

Of course, Kaleidoscope went on to record the equally-monumental Faintly Blowing prior to changing their name to Fairfield Parlour, and more than maintaining the quality quota in the process with a further set of fine albums and singles. It goes without saying that once you've fallen for Tangerine Dream, you will also need those (I haven't checked, but this is probably a legal requirement).

Rather like choosing a favourite son or daughter, it seems downright wrong to opt for one above the others, but for the sheer seismic impact it had upon me I may have to plump for Tangerine Dream. Please remember though: Other Kaleidoscope/Fairfield Parlour albums are also available....

Thank you, Andy!!! (& Peter Daltrey & Co., too!)

1 comment:

Cliff. said...

With you all the way on this one Andy, I was just listening to T.A. earlier this week as a result of compiling a mix around a 'Sky' theme, couldn't bear to just limit myself to the one song so ended up playing the entire album.

Incidentally, I used to live in Reading before relocating to France. Ah the days of the 'Old Purple Turtle,' now that was a fine watering hole if ever there was one.