Back to the web ringBack to the web ring

Bootlegged Dreams 2002

(Voices In The Net, May 2002)


Like most successful rock acts, Tangerine Dream has been given the dubious honour of being bootlegged. This means, that unauthorized recordings of the band's performances are being sold on illegally manufactured records. Many of these "bootlegs" have become collector's items over the years. Fans appreciate their availability, giving them access to otherwise unreleased music material by their favourite band.


The terminology in this twilight zone of collectable music often gets mixed up, not only through lack of knowledge, but also for political or reasons of deliberate obscurity. For this article, we'll stick to the definitions as outlined in what was, at it's time, the "bible" of bootleg collecting, the "Hot Wacks Book":
  • A bootleg consists of unreleased material recorded at concerts, studio outtakes and radio or TV broadcasts.
  • A pirate album consists of released material without attempting to make the LP look like an original.
  • A counterfeit album is an exact copy of an officially released album.
Of course, since the 1990's, these definitions apply just as well to CD releases. Bootlegs, Pirates and Counterfeits, to deserve those names, are not home-copied, but industrially produced LPs and CDs (not CDRs!), often with professionally printed covers.


All of this material and much more, also exists in, or even originated from, the form of "fan tapes" or "live tapes" - cassettes recorded at concerts and copied as such. Especially at British and German record fairs such tapes were frequently sold with photocopied inlay covers, often with a title given to them. Today's recording media for these are DAT or Minidisk, and the preferred media for trading them around are recordable CDs (CDRs), or MP3 files via the Internet. The CDRs often bear a title and have colour, but home-printed covers. With the exception of a few really specially packaged items, these CDRs are not covered here.


"Home brewed" or industrially produced -- all these different flavours of unreleased material are in violation of copyright laws in most countries. It should come as no surprise that some of the information given here is contradictory to what's printed on the bootleg covers. The majority of bootleg producers are organized criminals, not knowledgeable fans, and even the latter have reason enough to at least slightly obscure the origin of their releases. On top of that, whenever a bootleg didn't sell as fast as some distributor would have liked, the LPs or CDs got hastily re-packaged inside colour-photocopied new sleeves, to make them appear like new releases to the unsuspecting customer. These are often referred to as "fakes". In general: never trust a bootleg cover...


Counterfeits and Pirates are what the music industry fights most violently, whereas the much smaller Bootleg scene, although often looked upon with a bit of understanding lenience, gets swept up in the same raids. Counterfeits are not covered in this article, and Pirates only because they usually get passed off as Bootlegs to increase sales.


Fasten your seat belts now and brace yourself for a tour of the dark side of Tangerine Dream's musical output.


In March and April of 1977, TD toured the United States very successfully. At the same time they caught the attention of the American bootleggers. An excerpt of one of the concerts (maybe it's really Seattle April 21st) was made available on LP and sold in neutral covers with three different, photocopied inlay sheets bearing the titles Babylon's Strange / Fotzenslecker / Netz-Lautstärke!. Some of them have printed labels, but on most pressings the printing is too faded to be readable. Each edition seems to have been very limited, judged by the fact that they are all considered extremely rare these days. A very small number (less than 50) was pressed on multicoloured vinyl.


Babylon's Strange multi-coloured LP

Fotzenslecker and Netz-Lautstärke! several inlays



Three years later, after a year of negotiations, TD became the first western rock/pop band to play in East Berlin, then the capital of the German Democratic Republic. They performed two shows at the Palast der Republik on January 31st, 1980. The evening show was broadcasted on DT64 radio and partially on TV. A part of this concert was worked over in the studio and officially released by East Germany's record label Amiga as Quichotte in 1980. Six years later, a slightly remixed version was made available world-wide as Pergamon. Another part of the broadcast was picked up by bootleggers in West Berlin and released as the Staatsgrenze West LP. By now, this record has been sighted in four slightly different versions. Several thousand copies were pressed on black vinyl; a limited number of 1,000 came on pink vinyl, both with a printed black and white cover. After running out of pink vinyl at the pressing factory, the last few of these 1,000 copies were pressed on transparent, dark-red vinyl. Apparently the producers ran out of printed covers, too, as some copies have been sold with a photocopied inlay sheet.


Staatsgrenze West back, black LP, front

Staatsgrenze West dark red LP, pink LP, back (limited)



In 1988, another record appeared on the market, which is not really a bootleg, but a pirate: an illegal re-release of an officially available record. The East German Amiga record Quichotte was re-released in a few hundred copies on black and transparent, dark-red vinyl in Germany. The pressing quality is lousy, and the record is only interesting for its big, foldout-poster-cover, showing a black and white photo of the band in East Berlin. Some copies include a sticker with the title Don Quixote. Copies on multicoloured vinyl were announced, but have never been spotted.


Don Quixote front and back (poster), red LP, black LP



Before leaving on their tour of Japan in June 1983, TD played a memorial concert for Rainer Werner Fassbinder on June 11 at the Alte Oper in Frankfurt. A prolific director, writer and actor, Fassbinder had been one of the most controversial German filmmakers. The concert in Frankfurt's Old Opera House lasted only about 35 minutes, and most of the material was pressed on a 10-inch, clear vinyl bootleg with the label 'Dreams - Synthesizer Special'. The record came in a clear plastic bag with a blue inlay sheet Fassbinder Memorial Concert. As the first edition of a few hundred copies sold quickly, another 2,000 were pressed in 1984, making this one of the most common TD bootlegs, especially appreciated for its excellent sound quality. Several hundred copies were later destroyed in a Police bust.


Fassbinder Memorial Concert front, 10" vinyl and back



TD toured Australia for the second time in early 1982, appearing as the main act of a Festival. Their performance at Sydney's Regent Theatre on February 22nd was broadcasted on Australian radio, and an excellent tape of the show circulated among collectors. For unknown reasons, several people labelled the tape as 'Melbourne 24.2.82', although the Melbourne concert was on March 1st. With this erroneous title, the tape fell into the hands of German bootleggers, and the Leprous Appearance On Wednesday LP was born in 1984. It has a neutral cover, and the green photocopied inlay sheet shows invented titles for the featured tracks. Only 200 copies exist, half of them numbered from one to 100, the rest unnumbered. Dreaming was the 1993 CD re-release of Leprous Appearance On Wednesday. A direct transfer from the LP, including the silly intro. Ultima Thule, Part One, taken from Undercover Dreams is included as a bonus track.


The LP The Emerald Beyond, labelled as an Australian production but apparently from Germany, features an excellent recording of TD's encores at Detroit's Ford Auditorium on March 31st, 1977. The frantic crowd in the 'Capital of Heavy Metal' had driven TD to an almost unique performance of 'Heavy Metal Electronics'. Only 75 copies exist, 25 of them on red vinyl, the rest on the ordinary black, all with a black and white printed cover. Just four of them were sold in 1986 at extremely high prices, as during a campaign of the German Phonographic industry against the bootleggers all the rest had been confiscated in a police bust. In 1987, they were returned to the producer and appeared on the market. Such were the times before video piracy led to a world-wide tightening of copyright laws in the 1990s. Early 1992 saw a re-release of this record on CD under the misleading title Acoustic LSD - Live in Seattle, USA - The Emerald Beyond, stating an edition of 500 copies. Die Medianen von Zymbiola and The Derams Are Known To You both are The Emerald Beyond LPs with the matrix number scratched out and a hand-made cover replacing the original one.


The Emerald Beyond red vinyl, front and back

The Emerald Beyond back, front and black vinyl



A series of three bootleg LPs was issued within a few months time in 1986, featuring material from TD's tours of Great Britain in the early eighties. All three have printed black and white covers, are on black vinyl and claim to be limited editions of 150 copies each. The first 40 minutes of TD's concert at Preston Guildhall, November 5th, 1980 are on Undulation, while Space & Spheres has the beginning of the Newcastle City Hall concert on October 25th, 1981. Another 20 minutes of each of these concerts are on the Space Trucking album. A limited edition of five numbered copies of Undulation has popped up with a colour front inlay, and some more were sold as Edisons Last Playoff with a red cover and scratched-out matrix number. CD bootleggers put out Undulation in digital format in 1992. The title of the 500 copies edition was Soundtrack for Fantasy, Live in Detroit, USA, Undulation. [For details see Undulation / Soundtrack For Fantasy.]


Undulation front (ltd. edition), Space & Spheres front and Undulation front

Undulation back (ltd. edition), Space & Spheres back and Undulation back



TD hadn't done any tours in Western Europe or the United States between 1982 and 1986, so the majority of bootlegs released was based on older material. This changed with the tour of Great Britain in early 1986, concluded with concerts in Paris and Cologne. Being beaten by Virgin Records with the quick release of Logos Live in 1982, this year the London bootleggers came in first: Timeless Space features the complete show at the Hammersmith Odeon on March 27th, 1986 on a 2-LP-record. The very nice printed colour cover was done with more love of detail than expertise. Besides a photo of the out-of-time line-up Froese/Franke/Schmoelling, the back cover lists a fantasy TD Fan club address. The P.O. Box mentioned does not even exist. Timeless Space is a limited edition of 300 (or a few more...) partly numbered copies. The first 50 were planned in red vinyl, but mis-pressed and never released. Some copies of the second LP of this set were spotted in neutral covers with colour inlay sheets under the title The Nameless Is The Origin. They are labelled as a limited edition of 50 copies from Australia, but most probably only a few copies of this home-made offspring do exist.


Timeless Space front, LPs with labels

Leprous Appearance On Wednesday front and Timeless Space back



Another concert of the Europe tour in spring 1986 was released on Electronic Inspiration - Live 1985. As mentioned before: never trust a bootleg cover! The sound quality is just too bad to find out from which of the 1986 concerts this LP really is taken. It comes in a printed black/white cover and is a limited edition of a few hundred copies.


Electronic Inspiration front, Space Trucking front and LP with black label

Electronic Inspiration back, Space Trucking back and LP with black label



TD's only concert in Germany in 1986 took place in the concert hall of Cologne's radio station WDR, the 300 tickets were given out for free to the listeners of WDR, but die-hard fans from all over Europe found ways to get tickets and met up there. The first hour of TD's 100-minute performance was broadcasted live and gratefully received by German bootleggers who made Relativity from it. It is a limited edition of 100 numbered LPs, 80 of which come on black vinyl with a neutral cover and a green insert sheet with fantasy track titles. 10 copies on multicoloured vinyl have a neutral cover with a brown insert, another 10 have a full-size photo cover, photo labels and the insert printed on a transparent sheet. Both multicoloured series are numbered from one to ten!


Relativity green front, black LP and photo cover front

Relativity brown front, dark multicoloured LP and photo cover front

Relativity photo cover back and red multicoloured LP



In 1986, more than nine years had passed since TD's last tour in North America (aside from three concerts in 1980). They received a warm welcome from their fans and from the bootleg scene on their North America tour in summer 1986. The result was a double LP album of their main set at Toronto's Massey Hall on June 21st, with one side of their super-rare 1971 single Ultima Thule added as a bonus track on side four of Undercover Dreams. It is a limited edition of 100 copies, one of the records being pressed on black structured vinyl, the other on the customary black. The black, neutral cover bears a black/white inlay sheet. All copies are numbered, the last four (No. 97-100) are a special edition with photo foldout cover and photo labels.


Undercover Dreams photo cover outside and LP with photo label

Undercover Dreams photo cover inside and LP with photo label

Undercover Dreams front, back and LP



Early 1988 saw a bootleg release that might well become known as the most chaotic of all times. TD had played on a Summer Festival in the ruins of a Roman amphitheatre in Orange (France) on August 16, 1975. A well listenable tape recording of this event circulated among collectors all over the world, and in 1988 Cuban-American bootleggers finally ran records off a very bad copy. The bootleg exists in two forms: a LP and a 7"-single with additional music material. There are two major releases: the 'original', titled A Dream Unbound with text on the labels and the 'reissue' (although both issues appeared at the same time) Seekers of Dreams, which has no text on the labels. This applies for the LP and the 7". All of these were sold in countless variations: the LPs and singles on their own, or packages with the LP and the single packed together. For each of the LPs and singles (and their combinations in packages), at least five different covers are known to me. Some of them are just photocopied papers, but most of them are printed colour sheets showing fantasy and science fiction paintings. They were well available all over the United States for some time, so the edition should have been a few hundred copies each. Copies of the LP A Dream Unbound were released on white and red vinyl, too. [For details see A Dream Unbound / Seekers Of Dreams / Orange Festival.]


Seekers Of Dreams front, LP and single release without text

A Dream Unbound single release with text and front, Seekers Of Dreams back, A Dream Unbound back and LP with text



1986 and 1987 had been tough years for the serious bootleg collector. A lot of new titles were issued every other month, most of them in Germany. All of these issues were more or less limited editions from one to a few hundred copies. They did not, therefore, reach the level of general availability of Staatsgrenze West or Fassbinder Memorial Concert. Their limited availability also subjected them to much speculation and vast price differences. In late 1987, the Phonographic Industry became more focused on this problem, and police raids put several bootleggers 'out of business' and almost dried out the scene.


In 1990, a British mail order record shop offered "a strictly limited quantity of a special edition, studio quality live TD LP from their 1986 tour..." for 10 Pounds. Those lucky enough to win the "first come, first served"-race found Parisian Dreams in their mailbox, an excellent, professionally remixed recording of the concert at Paris Olympia in March 1986. It comes with a simple insert cover (different colours have been seen), some copies are numbered, but no quantity is specified. The second part of this concert, filled up with Dolphin Smile, followed a few weeks later in a similar design as Parisian Dreams Too.


Parisian Dreams Too front, Parisian Dreams front and LP

Parisian Dreams Too front, Parisian Dreams front and LP



The same year saw the first bootleg sampler CD 70/90 to be released, coming from the US. A limited edition of 400 copies in twenty different, elaborate covers gave it a distinctly Japanese appearance, helping to keep the price up in the sky. The CD features several old vinyl-only singles tracks and several cuts from film soundtracks that had not been released before. In 1992, a repackaged version in tri-fold cardboard covers was distributed in the USA.


TD's video album Canyon Dreams, produced in 1987, had easily gone gold in worldwide sales and won high credits for the soundtrack. Miramar wouldn't release it on CD before late 1991, and consequently the bootleggers supplied the fans with what they wanted: a pre-release of the official CD on a bootleg LP The Canyon Dreams. The full printed cover lists more tracks than the video, but the music is in fact identical. Several different colours of vinyl point to an edition of several hundred copies.


The Canyon Dreams black, blue and multicoloured vinyl

The Canyon Dreams back, front and black vinyl



Back on the road after four years, the 1990 tour of the United Kingdom was a mixed success. The Tangs faced some packed venues, while others were just a quarter full. One of the hotter shows was held at Bristol, and an excellent recording came out in 1991 as Bicycle Race. It has a nice, printed cover and comes on red, yellow or blue marbled vinyl. Even copies on the customary black have been spotted, and Singet, denn der Gesang vertreibt die Wölfe is the 1994 picture disk LP release. [For details see Bicycle Race / Singet, denn der Gesang vertreibt die Wölfe.]


Bicycle Race red multicoloured LP, brown multicoloured LP and front

Bicycle Race back, blue marbled LP and yellow multicoloured LP

Singet, denn der Gesang vertreibt die Wölfe picture LP front and back



The very same German source that released The Canyon Dreams and Bicycle Race started a series of bootleg CD releases in 1992 with In den Gärten Pharaos / Bicycle Race, a longer version of the music on the LP. The trademark of this source became the fact that each CD release (of maximum a thousand total) came out in two to five different colours of the label print on the CD itself, the outer covers being identical.


April 1992: the CD Danger Live catches the collectors by surprise. An hour of excellent quality music, said to be compiled from two concerts in Brussels in 1976. No tapes good enough to serve as masters for this release had been known before. A very nice cover and label artwork add to the appeal of this gemstone. The 500 copies pressed didn't last long in general distribution. 25 numbered "promo copies" come in a LP-sized box together with a poster and a "Danger Live" badge.


Abusing the name of an organization of electronic music fans, an American bootlegger offered 7"-singles with live versions of House Of The Rising Sun and a guitar solo shortly after. [For details see Live In The USA 1988.]


Numerous other CD bootlegs hit the market during 1992. Sound And Effects brings us 69 minutes from the concert in New York's Radio City Music Hall in 1988 in terrible sound quality. It has a professional outfit, runs under the "American Concerts Series" and some of the CDs have a sticker "not licensed for Germany".


Also from the USA came three CDs on the "Silver Rarities" label. All have space pictures as covers and are sub-titled as "Argonautica Americana part one (two, three)". Me-Rad claims to be "recorded Live in USA 1976" but actually is an excellent recording of the concert in Nottingham's Usher Hall, Nov. 8, 1976. Ardem 'O', "recorded live in USA 1988" is from Columbus, Ohio Theater, 29.8.1988. Collected Endings features further music from Nottingham and Cleveland.


Live! Improvised! is a double CD with an excellent recording of the infamous performance at Reims Cathedral in 1974. The inside cover is a copy of the concert announcement.


Antarktis was the next release from the "many CD label colours" source. The first 65 minutes are excerpts from the concert in front of the Berlin Reichstag on Aug 1, 1987, the last 10 minutes are identical to the first three tracks on In den Gärten Pharaos / Bicycle Race (Bristol 1990). The sound quality is excellent, and was followed a year later with an equally good second part of the Berlin concert on the 20th Century Serenades CD.


Prayer Of Quiet Dreams, released in the US in a tri-fold cardboard cover, featuring various soundtrack excerpts from 1971-1992 and two live tracks from the 1992 US tour, and Dreaming On Danforth Avenue, recorded live in Toronto, Oct 4, 1992, a CD with white label background and a full colour foldout cover and excellent sound quality concluded the plethora of 1992 CD releases.


The following year, the assault on fan's finances continued with Mystery Tracks, which combined some pirated, hard-to-get official material. The complete Flashpoint soundtrack (only a few playable copies of the official CD existed at the time due to a production error), Quinoa, the exclusive CD release for members of the former TDIFC, two tracks from a single with Chi Coltrane on vocals (One Night In Medina / I Just Want To Rule My Own Life Without You), Dr. Destructo from the maxi single of the soundtrack Thief and the Rumpelstiltskin Theme, all in all 77 minutes in "official" quality from the "many CD label colours" source.


With Sonambulistic Imagery came a double CD set from the USA with a nice cover booklet featuring 108 minutes of live music from the Laguna Hills concert in 1986 in acceptable sound quality.


A new bootleg source in the UK brought us 3 Tier Dream, a triple CD with a 4-page inlay booklet in a limited and numbered edition of 300 copies. Tier 1: Analogue Days London Albert Hall 1976, Tier 2: Digital Times London Hammersmith 1982 (really, 1981!), Tier 3: Paris Dreams Paris Olympia 1986, Another Perspective (1) and Another Perspective (2). The latter two are really Speed and the title track from the official maxi single Das Mädchen auf der Treppe, played at 33 instead of 45 rpm! The sound quality improves from very good on Tier 1 to excellent on Tier 3. The covers are either numbered or marked "Promo". 3 Tier Dream On!, the sequel to the 3CD-Box, came out a year later and features another 41 minutes from TD's 1986 Paris concert plus a pre-release-version of The Cliffs Of Sydney (Sydney). Quality is the same as Parisian Dreams Too, and again it's a limited and numbered edition of 300 copies.


The German source continued to spill more CDs in a variety of label colours in 1994. Rätikon has 58 minutes in very good quality from TD's show at Melbourne 1.3.82, taken from the radio transmission, and is filled up with tracks by Popol Vuh, Man and Brian Eno.


Sol Et Luna - Mystery Tracks Vol. II is another CD of rather rare material. It features the complete Heartbreakers, the four unreleased solo tracks from the '70-'80 box, Alexander Square, Oszillator Planet Concert and an excerpt of an interview with Edgar from the Rockoon Special Edition CD single in good sound quality.


The UK source took its share with Spherical Harmonics One, the first hour of an excellent soundboard cut of TD's 1988 Boston concert and Coefficient Of Aural Expansion. The latter was taken from a copy made directly from the BBC's master tape of the 1975 concert in London's Royal Albert Hall.


The 1971, official 3-LP set Ossiach Live got transferred, scratches and all, to a pirate double CD of the same title. On it you can find the otherwise unreleased 8:10 long Oszillator Planet Concert by TD.


1995 started off with a long-awaited release. The UK source, this time using the Blue Moon label, finally distributed The Keep on CD after long troubles with CD pressing plants and many broken promises. The CD features nine tracks from the studio master tape of the soundtrack, three more released by Edgar for German radio airplay and two remixes taken from the 70/90 bootleg. Sound quality is not top notch, but bearable.


The following year saw what is up to now the last TD bootleg on vinyl. Don't Walk - Dream Now! is a very nicely packaged double LP from TD's concert in Berlin's Eissporthalle on February 19, 1978. 101 minutes in reasonable sound quality from a tour that had not yet been covered by any live releases. It comes in a metal (!) box, includes a nice colour sheet and press quotes, is a numbered edition of 200 copies and the first twenty are in blue vinyl.


Don't Walk - Dream Now! black ink box, blue ink box

Don't Walk - Dream Now! inner poster, black LP, inlay

Don't Walk - Dream Now! inner poster, blue LP, inlay



Montreal's CHOM-FM aired TD's show at Place des Arts on April 10, 1977, and the tape of this eerie broadcast circulated widely among fans. Part of it became available on the CD Patrolling Space Borders / Laserium, 74 minutes in excellent quality. Some copies have been sighted with a different cover (but identical CD), titled Laserium.


American fans had a CD of Legend in the making, featuring the complete soundtrack plus some re-edits and live versions of tracks, but the pressing factory messed up the production. All copies were missing the third track, and most were destroyed. Only a handful of copies of this misprint are in circulation. A second production run never got started, as Varese had announced an official release of TD's score for Legend in the meantime, making this fan project obsolete.


The "UK source" mentioned above got under more and more pressure in 1996, and most copies of Coefficient Of Aural Expansion CD got confiscated, and the planned Part 2 was never pressed on CD. Under the disguise of 'The Magnificent Music Corporation of Italy', both Parts got released on recordable CDRs. Both Part 1 and Part 2 are a limited and numbered edition of 70 copies each, probably the highest-ever edition of a CDR. Similarly, Spherical Harmonics Two was distributed, as another series of 70 numbered CDRs before this source got plugged up for good.


Later this year, a really strange item hit the street: Rubycon Revisited, a pirate mix of TD and Black Sabbath music. And yes, this is indeed a "properly" pressed CD!


By late 1997, TD material didn't sell as much in the collector's community as it used to, and CDR technology became widely available. These facts, and intense prosecution, slowed what had been a flow of bootlegs down to a trickle, with a final surge in 1999.


Stealing from the thieves, another version of the 1975 London, Royal Albert Hall concert was released on the Phaedream CD. The record was mainly marketed through Japan, and only the first two tracks (33 minutes) are really TD, the third is a track by Neuronium and Nico.


With a lot of effort, Risky Business - The Audio Movie Kit, a promotional item for the film, was reproduced on two CDs. They are accompanied by a bound, book-like reproduction of the "paper ware" in the original box. This is a numbered, limited release of 300 copies by Burping Cow Records (of 70/90 fame) and different from a similar project on CDRs.


Electronic Orgy is a 4-CD-set from the USA, full of rare TD tracks, mostly from singles, films and special releases, skilfully de-noised and presented in great sound quality. A planned second part was never pressed, as even the only 500 copies of the first part proved extremely hard to sell. Also, the fact that its contents were mostly pirated official material had made TDI Music actively prosecute this release.


Traumzeit, the last effort of the German source, feeds on similar music sources as Electronic Orgy, with some more recent CD-single tracks added. The tracks on the two CDs, "alpha" and "beta" are just the other way round as printed on the cover.


In the following years up to 2002, the only remarkable releases on pressed CDs were pirate editions of TD albums in Russia, in the form of "two albums on one audio CD", several samplers and extensive MP3 collections. Nothing unreleased or rare can be found on them. [For details see Golden Collection 2000.]


TD had made another try to release their score for The Keep in 1997. They had all the (heavily re-arranged) musical material together, a nice cover designed and a preview run of 300 copies pressed and packaged in a gimmick cardboard cover with the number TDI010CD. These were sold for 20 UKP during the 1997 UK tour. Many fans that shied away from the purchase, awaiting an imminent street release at more reasonable prices, came to regret their decision: legal trouble prevented the release until today, and made the preview copies extremely pricey rarities. A few hundred copies of the general release, in a slightly different digipack cover, were available for a short time in 1999 from TDI Music in a package deal only, making them just as rare as the preview copies. In a heroic stance against the abundance of CDRs, Orange Records released a pirate CD of the TDI010CD, plus four more Keep-style tracks lifted from other official CDs (South Camora, Moorland, Silver Scale and Logos, Part Two). Only very few copies of this CD have been spotted so far, the claimed Romanian origin is, as every so often, <ahem> fertilizer. Their making is suspiciously similar to Phaedream, and most probably the first copies are released in a slow trickle only to reap in extremely high prices in auctions.


Vinyl has become obsolete, except for the completist collectors, and, due to CDR copying, TD bootleg CDs don't generate anywhere near the sales they used to in the 1990s. Flawless, digital copying killed the pirates, at least almost, long before it killed music. Poetic justice, isn't it?

MC releases

Cassette tapes are just as obsolete. The borderline between private 'fan tapes' with nice photocopied covers and 'cassette bootlegs' is somewhat arbitrary, but the following releases have professionally printed covers and/or cassette labels, or were very widely distributed.


Besides all the official and illegal LP releases, TD's 1980 East Berlin gigs have also inspired a cassette bootlegger. Labelled as a limited edition of 28 copies, Electronical Processor comes with printed black and white cover and labels.


TD's concert in support of the peace movement at the Berlin Reichstag on August 29, 1981 was released on a C90-tape with black and white inlay cover and labels as Tangerine Dream LIVE and an estimated 1,000 copies were distributed in the peace movement scene.


Soundtrack Box Vol. I is an LP-sized, printed box with a plastic inlay holding four cassette tapes. The music on them is taken from the video releases of films TD has made the soundtracks for. It features tracks from The Keep, Forbidden, The Soldier and Strange Behaviour and comes with two black and white inserts and a 12-page booklet. It's a limited edition of 65 copies from Germany, 15 of them are stamped as 'Promo-copies' and have an extra tape with three more tracks from The Keep.


Soundtrack Box Vol. I and Danger Live 'promo' box with poster



Made in the same style, as a 'cassette box' comes the 1988 US Tour Box, featuring concert recordings from Milwaukee, Los Angeles, Detroit and Toronto, as well as a radio interview on a total of 8 tapes. Included is a reprint of a TD-biography published by the Washington Post. A "promo edition" with a photo cover and colour tape labels and covers exists, too.


1988 US Tour Box

1988 US Tour Box promo edition



The Bootleg Box was an edition of 25 red plastic suitcases carrying 8 tapes that had been copied from LP bootlegs mentioned above. A spiral bound booklet with cover photocopies completes the set.


Undercover Dreams was released in a numbered edition of 25 copies as a cassette version with a plastic-coated cover and orange labels. The track order has been changed to make it fit onto a C90.


As late as 1995, White Cloths came out as a very nice colour box housing two tapes and several good colour and black/white photos from TD's legendary concert as the first western rock band in East Berlin in 1980. Playing time is 170 minutes with what is passed of as excerpts from both shows (but is actually the evening show plus Quichotte) and an interview conducted on East German radio. Both the photos and the excellent sound of the tapes make this a remarkable item.


White Cloths boxed release


Video releases

Covert video recordings of live concerts are much scarcer than audio tapes, and TD have not produced many promo videos and TV features in their long career. Consequently, no professionally dubbed videotapes of live or TV material with properly printed covers are known to exist. Only two live video cassettes are remarkable for their unusual packaging. A private videotape of the concert at Bonner Springs on June 13, 1988 already circulated among collectors for a while when a limited edition of 25 copies with full colour cover and cassette labels plus a cardboard inlay in a plastic box popped up, titled as Kansas City. A few of them even come in a wooden box! A custom-printed plastic box wraps An Evening in L.A., live footage from the 1992 tour filled up with some video clips. Equally spectacular, The Goblins Live Club Box bundles up a CDR with Part One and an audience videotape with Part Two of the concert in Neu-Isenburg 1997 in a coloured Styrofoam box. A nice cover and inlay sheet complete this limited and numbered edition of 40 copies.


An Evening In L.A. VHS release

The Goblins Live Club Box VHS release


DVD releases

In early 2002, the first copies of popular live video tapes became available on recordable DVDs, starting with Coventry 1975 and Warsaw 2001.


Coventry 1975 and Warsaw 2001 DVD releases


CDR releases

Starting with Rare Trax 1 in 1990 and Dreamtime, Transformation and Fragments in late 1992, concert tapes, soundtracks and rare, unreleased tracks started to appear on recordable CDRs, with computer generated colour covers. At that time, blank CDRs cost around 40 US$ apiece, and the recorders went for many grand. By the turn of the millennium, the technology had become a hundred times less expensive, and literally hundreds of CDR "bootlegs" were floating around, far too many to keep track of.


Rare Trax 1, Transformation, Fragments and Dreamtime CD-R releases



With the CDR process being so easy, even the rudimentary "quality control" inherent in traditional bootleg production just disappeared. People would usually invest at least a little effort into finding a really good master tape before committing to a lengthy and expensive LP or CD production process. With CDRs, just about any nth generation, truncated tape gets released. Several fan projects, co-ordinated on the Internet, are devoted to finding complete, best possible sources for de-noising and re-mastering onto CDRs. In some cases, fans even managed to find better and more complete masters than those used for a bootleg production. But there is just no point in following and listing all the junk floating around these islands of sanity.


An exception shall be made for a few CDR releases that distinguish themselves by the only thing that's not easily copied -- special packaging or extensive printed material.


The Alien Air Music CDR brings us 57 minutes of live music from various US concerts in 1986, 1988 and 1989. It comes in a wooden box with a numbered brass plate on it. Quality is great, too, and only 25 copies were made. Fractal Realities In A Shattered Plane is a one-off CD-R made as a new year's gimmick with a similar wooden box and brass plate. The music is from TD's Melbourne 1982 concert.


Alien Air Music CD-R release in wooden box



The Complete Works of The Keep comes with a nice, colour cover, has 17 tracks from the film, studio tapes and radio broadcasts with a total time of 74 min, giving a good overview of the material from The Keep that's in circulation. Sound quality is acceptable; it has a printed label and an alleged issue of 40 numbered copies.


The Complete Works Of The Keep CD-R release



The Dream Is Not Always The Same is a CDR from Germany, featuring three concert excerpts from TD's Berlin concerts in 1976, 1980 and 1982, all in very good quality. What makes this limited edition of just 10 copies very special is the packaging: a nice foldout colour insert wraps the CDR in a steel sleeve.


Risky Business - The Audio Movie Kit is a double CDR with all the music, features and interviews from this promotional item, but also what must be over 100 pages of reproduced printed matter that came with the original box, a limited edition of 15 copies.


Risky Business - The Audio Movie Kit1 and The Dream Is Not Always The Same CD-R releases



That's all about the illegal releases of Tangerine Dream's music that I've held in my hands. Over the years of collecting, I have heard countless rumours about other bootlegs. Most of them have been positively identified as fakes.


Several bootlegs have been announced among the fans, but never been produced or distributed due to police activities, like Exit Stage West or Dreams For Freedom / Snackbar Dreamer In Detroit. On other occasions, rumours about upcoming official releases have been mistaken for bootlegs, like Live Miles. TD already had this record on their discography in 1983, but changed the title of the new upcoming live album to Poland and used the title for a later live album in 1988. Other recordings, like the music for the Chichester Festival in 1974 or the soundtrack for The Keep, were due for official release, but never appeared because of legal problems among the publishing companies.


Some others might well exist, although in all cases I have never heard of anyone who actually owned them as part of a collection, and not even genuine tape copies have surfaced anywhere. Among those which have so far eluded a final judgement are: US-Tour 1977 (could be a double LP from Cleveland, April 2nd, 1977), Waiter(s) On The Dance (LP from Manchester June 5th, 1976) and the Reims Cathedrale December 13, 1974 LP, which is said to be an edition of only 50 copies.


So, if anyone out there has detailed information about any bootlegs not listed in this article, let us know about them!

Dream On!

Klaus Beschorner


© 1992/2002 text and photos by Klaus Beschorner. This version of 'Bootlegged Dreams' is offered to the public for distribution on the World Wide Web and private printout only. No parts of it may be modified or used for any sort of publication without written approval of Klaus Beschorner.
Copyright/Disclaimer   © 2001-2021 by Michael Berling. Last Update: 2021-09-19 21:31