This is an album from current Tangerine Dream members Thorsten Quaeschning and Ulrich Schnauss. It’s highly distinctive and yet wears its influences clearly and immediately in that it sounds like vintage Virgin-era Tangerine Dream, with its array of clattering analogue synthesizers and loops sounding like something from a bygone era.
Synthwaves was recorded in West Berlin late in 2016 and is an independent release, but don’t be fooled, this is not Tangerine Dream-lite but rightly stands alone as a release on its own merits. There is a warmth and an integrity that acts as a tribute, repaying its heroes and inspirations, but in addition it is a thoroughly enjoyable and listenable album with strong music and compositions and not just aimless noodling. It is a fairly immediate album but, like most, the more you listen the more you hear, if you get my drift.
I especially like the use of simple melodies that stay with you after everything has finished, such as occurs on Rain on Dry Concrete (I love the imaginative titles used). There is substance and subtext here, but you need to let the music surround you to catch the undercurrents and see where Thorsten and Ulrich are taking you. It is a lovingly crafted album by two tremendous talents who on the basis of this release are very capable and considerate musicians who can be trusted to carry the TD banner forward into waters uncharted.
The only downside is that the information provided with the CD is very scant, which I feel lets things down a little, but I guess budgetary constraints account for that.
A great little disc, catch it while you can.
01. Main Theme (7:04)
02. Rain On Dry Concrete (5:43)
03. Slow Life (8.00)
04. Cats and Dogs (6:26)
05. A Calm But Steady Flow (6:18)
06. Thirst (8:15)
07. Flare (5:56)
08. Prism (6:05)
Total Time – 56:45
Thorsten Quaeschning & Ulrich Schnauss – Various Synthesizers, Programming & All Sounds
Record Label: Azure Vista Records
Catalogue#: Vista 003
Date of Release: 30th June 2017
Quaeschning & Schnauss – Bandcamp
Thorsten Quaeschning – Facebook
Ulrich Schnauss – Facebook