Pilots Of Purple TwilightThe Virgin Recordings 1980-1983
- Studio/Soundtrack/Live, released October 2020 -
10CD release Europe 2020
Artwork: Rupert Lloyd
Design: Phil Smee
|Recording date||1980 - 1983|
|Pilots Of Purple Twilight is a continuation of the box set In Search Of Hades, released about 16 months before. While the latter covered TD's Virgin years from 1973 to 1979, the new box set comprises the years 1980 to 1983, after which the Virgin contract ended and the band signed with the Jive Electro label. Apparently In Search Of Hades had been a very successful venture and so provided the possibility to do a second set.|
With 10 CDs of music material, Pilots Of Purple Twilight is much less extensive than its predecessor. This is due to the fact that the Virgin/Universal archives just did not contain more material than presented here -- literally everything available was used. And in fact, a considerable amount of previously unreleased material could be unearthed from the vaults to be included here -- more than expected by insiders, knowing that since the mid-seventies Tangerine Dream looked after their master tapes themselves and only provided Virgin with finished album masters for release.
The people responsible for both box sets are mostly the same, thus design and layout go nicely with In Search Of Hades. Once again the box contains an large, LP sized hard cover book of about 70 pages with the original album front covers, numerous photos and an extensive essay by Wouter Bessels who was involved in master tape research as well. The entire music material has been remastered from the original master tapes by Ben Wiseman once again, resulting in an excellent sound quality, much better than that of any previous digital release of the original albums. The CDs are housed in two large gatefold cardboard holders.
Disc 1 features the studio album Tangram (1980, tracks 1 and 2 in the track listing above). It comes without any bonus track.
Disc 2 contains the complete soundtrack album Thief (1981, tracks 3 to 10), plus the extended non-album version of Dr. Destructo, originally from the Dr. Destructo/Diamond Diary promo single (1980, track 11), now for the very first time on CD. The non-TD track Confrontation (composed and performed by Craig Safan) that was present on some versions of Thief is missing, though, as this box set is explicitly limited to TD material.
Disc 3 holds the studio album Exit (1981, tracks 12 to 17), again without any bonus track.
Disc 4 features the studio album White Eagle (1982, tracks 18 to 21) plus no less than six bonus tracks -- the complete (as far as previously released) material from two episodes of the German TV crime series 'Tatort': Das Mädchen auf der Treppe (1982, tracks 22 to 25) and Daydream/Moorland (1983, tracks 26 and 27). Several of these bonus tracks premiere on CD, almost 40 years after their release on vinyl.
Disc 5 presents the previously unreleased material from the soundtrack The Soldier (1982, tracks 28 to 44).
Disc 6 and 7 contain The Dominion Theatre Concert, a complete live recording of the famous 1982 London concert (tracks 45 to 64 -- NB: The two main sets are featured as two long tracks on CD, but for convenience of reference the track listing above shows the material split into individual compositions.)
Disc 8 features the original album Logos Live (1982, tracks 65 to 74 -- NB: The two long tracks from the main set are split into individual compositions in the track listing once more). It does not feature any bonus tracks. A comparision of this album with the complete concert reveals that Logos Live is not just an excerpt of the above. In fact Logos Live is not a real 'live' album but consists mainly of music the band recorded and prepared in their Berlin studio just before the tour. Afterwards, they just added the live ambience and announcement from the Dominion concert to appropriate spots and released it as 'live' album.
Disc 9 comprises the studio album Hyperborea (1983, tracks 75 to 78) plus the five TD tracks from the soundtrack album Risky Business (1984, tracks 79 to 83). Unfortunately, the eight tracks originally presented as part of the promotional Risky Business - The Audio Movie Kit (1983) could not be added as bonus tracks, as there were no tapes left of this material.
Disc 10 features the original soundtrack album The Keep (1983, tracks 84 to 96), for the first time in its original form the band had intended for release in February 1984. The album was cancelled by Virgin and stayed unreleased since, though Edgar Froese was able to release two strictly limited runs of a somewhat altered version of this album in 1997 and 1999 through Tangerine Dream's own label TDI.
All in all, Pilots Of Purple Twilight is a more than worthwhile extension for each Tangerine Dream collection, as it does not only present six classic albums in excellent sound quality but features a lot of additional music material -- some of it previously unreleased, others premiering on CD at least. The fine presentation of the box, including the high-quality book with lots of photos and background information is just the cherry on the cake.
About the same time Pilots Of Purple Twilight was released, the six previously released albums that are part of this set (i.e. Tangram, Thief, Exit, White Eagle, Logos Live and Hyperborea) were re-released individually -- featuring the new remasters, but without any bonus tracks as contained on some of the respective discs within the box set (see above). This is somewhat different from the release strategy with regard to In Search Of Hades where the individually re-released albums indeed did contain bonus tracks.
- 2020: Virgin/Universal
- 10CD: 089 700-8; LP sized box with sticker; LP sized hardcover book; multi-coloured discs
- complete album or individual tracks: