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Tangerine Dream


- Studio, released August 1972 -


CD release Europe 1996
Artwork: Edgar Froese
Photo: Monique Froese

CD release UK 1987

CD release Japan 2004
Artwork: Edgar Froese
Photo: Monique Froese


1.Birth Of Liquid Plejades 19:5719:5419:5419:58
2.Nebulous Dawn 17:5517:5617:5617:57
3.Origin Of Supernatural Probabilities 19:36-19:3519:36
4.Zeit 17:01-14:3517:01
5.Klangwald, Part One ---37:27
6.Klangwald, Part Two ---40:41
Total running time74:2937:5072:00152:40


Recording date1972
Recording site(s)Dierks Studio (Cologne)
Recording engineer(s)Dieter Dierks
Composer(s)Edgar Froese, Chris Franke, Peter Baumann
Musician(s)Edgar Froese, Chris Franke, Peter Baumann, Florian Fricke, Steve Schroyder, Christian Vallbracht, Jochen von Grumbcow, Hans Joachim Brüne, Johannes Lücke
Producer(s)Edgar Froese, Chris Franke, Peter Baumann


In 1972 the line-up Edgar Froese/Chris Franke/Peter Baumann got down to work on a huge double album called Zeit with Franke and Baumann on VSC3 synthesisers, Froese on Mellotron, organ and guitar, Florian Fricke of Popol Vuh on the big Moog, and four cello players. It was called a "Largo in Four Movements" and was completely experimental.


Edgar Froese: "That was a big step, because that's when I gave up playing the guitar. Peter Baumann joined the band, and Chris didn't want to play drums any more. [...] They [the cellists, ed.] were four students. All they had to play was A-440 and just vary 1/4 tone out of it." (Interview with Neumusik, January 1980)


Backtracking with Tangerine Dream

Edgar Froese: "Those early records were influenced by Pink Floyd. Zeit was probably our most avant garde album, but it was a direction we chose not to follow. Life has to change."

Chris Franke: "Floyd's Ummagumma was the first really experimental rock album. Until then you simply had improvisation like Hendrix and Cream."

(Interview with Johnny Black, thisBEAT, issue 17, April 1986)


From 30 Years Of Dreaming

In 1972, the double album Zeit came out, and this can be said to be Tangerine Dream's longest step away from the rock-orientated music. It has been called the longest Largo in the world (76 minutes) and in four movements, the album is also completely free of any rhythms and senses of pulse. Carpets of sound moving slowly in and out between each other sound colours changing all the time.

As guest musicians there were four cellists, Steve Schroyder on the organ and Florian Fricke from the band Popol Vuh. Fricke was supposedly invited because he was one of the first people in Germany who had a big modular Moog synthesizer...

The music was also marked by another instrument, the Mellotron, which was an early kind of sampler that could play small tape loops with pre-recorded sounds. It was especially acknowledged for its very good strings and woodwinds, but it was a very difficult instrument to play and at first classical musicians were afraid that the Mellotron would eventually replace them:

Froese: "We put our headsets on one ear and then we were listening to the tone of the Mellotron while already started playing our stuff. Then by listening to the 440 Hz out of the oscillator, we were tuning the Mellotron against it. So it was the only way of doing it, and that had to be done about ten times during the gig of two and a half hour. Looking back to those days, that sort of adventurous fear, not knowing if you will overcome a good, a bad concert, out of tune concert, or whatever. Today everything, it's much better tuned, it's nearly perfect, but it's not having a wild ride through the jungle any more." (BBC Radio 2 -- December 17th 1997)

Froese: "A couple of hours prior to the start of the gig [Albert Hall '75], someone came along and said "They [the Musicians' Union] are asking for a couple of thousand pounds, for you're using an orchestra. You are not using THEM, you are using your bloody keys, here. THAT's an orchestra". So there was a bit of a fight going on backstage and so we had to pay something, that night." (BBC Radio 2 -- December 17th 1997)

Tangerine Dream were now seriously beginning to create the electronic sound that would be the band's trademark, and on 25th November 1972, Tangerine Dream gave their first concert with electronic instruments only. It took place at the broadcasting studio of WDR in Cologne and lasted for about 50 minutes.

© 1999 by Kent Eskildsen




15 years later, in 1987, Zeit was released on CD for the first time. While the USA release featured the reworked original cover artwork and the complete music material on two CDs, the UK release had a total different cover design, originating from the boxed set In The Beginning; furthermore the music material was shortened by about two minutes to fit on the CD.


Nine years later, in 1996, the CD was re-released again, carefully remastered from the original tapes. The cover artwork was very similar to the original LP cover. The CD booklet features sleeve notes taken from the book "Krautrocksampler" by Julian Cope.


In 2004 the album was re-released in Japan with a cardboard sleeve featuring the exact replica of the original LP sleeves.


A very special edition of Zeit was released in May 2011 by the British Esoteric Records as part of a re-issue of the TD back catalogue of the Pink and Blue Years. The album was released as a double CD, the first disc featuring the original album, while the second one, titled "The Klangwald Performance", is a completely remasterered version of the recording that before had been fan-released as Tangerine Tree Volume 52: Cologne 1972, featuring a concert of almost 80 minutes, supposedly recorded in Cologne in 1972 (though there are some doubts whether this information is correct -- see the remarks for the Tangerine Tree release). That live recording perfectly fits to the mood of Zeit, thus this is a great companion to the studio album and doubles the running time of this unique spacey journey. Like all other re-releases of the Esoteric series, the discs come nicely packaged with a highly informative 16-page booklet, featuring the original artwork, credits, numerous photos and a very well-written essay by TD collector Andy King.


Furthermore, Esoteric released a special package of Zeit as a limited edition of 1,000 copies. Besides the double CD as described above, it contains 2 blue vinyl LPs with the original recording, coming in a full colour gatefold sleeve, a 7" x 7" full colour book (with many more photos) and three postcards (two of them replicating the promo postcards that OHR/Metronome produced in 1972). This release did not go to general distribution but had to be ordered dirctly from Esoteric Records.


Photos from the 2011 Zeit Boxed Set

Thanks to Jacob Pertou for providing these photos on his blog.

(Click on the images to see a larger version of the respective photo in a new browser window)


In April 2012 the Japanese company Belle Antique re-released the remastered Esoteric version of Zeit as double SHM-CD (Super High Material CD).


1976: Virgin/Festival
2LP [a]: L 45747/8; green labels, foc
1976: Virgin/Polygram
2LP [a]: VMD 2221; light-yellow labels, wide single sleeve cover
1996: Essential/Castle
CD [a]: ESMCD347
1999: Essential/Castle
2LP [a]: ESDLP347; picture label/white label on each LP
2002: Sanctuary/Castle
CD [a]: CMRCD490; standard jewel case with additional cardboard wrapper
2011: Reactive/Esoteric
2CD [d]: EREACD 21017; slim double jewel case; multicoloured discs
2LP [a] + 2CD [d]: REATD 001; box; multi-coloured labels, blue vinyl, foc; slim double jewel case, multicoloured discs; postcards, additional booklet; limited edition of 1,000 copies
1976: Virgin/CPF
2LP [a]: 940 108/9; multi-coloured labels, foc, mispressing: music runs backwards
1976: Virgin/Polydor
2LP [a]: 2676 711; green labels, foc
2LP [a]: 2676 711; red/silver labels, foc
1972: Ohr
Promo-2LP [a]: OMM 2/56021; ear labels, foc, promo insert
2LP [a]: OMM 2/56021; ear labels, foc
1976: Brain/Metronome
2LP [a]: 2/1086; green labels, foc
2LP [a]: 2/1086; orange labels, foc
1976: Virgin/Ariola
2LP [a]: 28 987; green labels, foc
2LP [a]: 28 987; red/green labels, foc
1978: Virgin/Phonogram
2LP [a]: 2676 711; green labels, foc
1974: PDU/EMI Italia
2LP [a]: PIM-SQ 6010/11; black/silver labels, foc
1980?: Virgin/Dischi
2LP [a]: AORL 28 382; red/green labels, foc
2LP [a]: 2676 711; multi-coloured labels, foc
1976: Virgin/Nippon Columbia
2LP [a]: YZ-83-4-AX; white/grey labels, foc
1978: Virgin/Nippon Columbia
2LP [a]: YB-7001/2-AX; white/grey labels, foc
2004: Arcàngelo
2CD [a]: ARC-7048/49; cardboard sleeve, obi, fold-out poster
2008: Arcàngelo
2SHM-CD [a]: ARC-8007/8008; cardboard sleeve, obi
2012: Belle Antique
2SHM-CD [d]: BELLE 121943-4; cardboard sleeve, obi
Promo-2SHM-CD [d]: BELLE 121943-4; cardboard sleeve, obi; sticker "SAMPLE" on rear, print "LOANED SAMPLE" on inner CD ring
New Zealand
1976: Interfusion/Festival
2LP [a]: L-45583/4; brown labels, foc
1978: Virgin/Ariola
2LP [a]: 28 987 XH; green labels, foc
2LP [a]: 28 987 XH; red/green labels, foc with wrong colours on inside
1976: Virgin
Promo-2LP [a]: VD 2503; green promo labels with white circle, foc
2LP [a]: VD 2503; green labels, foc
2LP [a]: VD 2503; green labels with white circle, foc
2LP [a]: VD 2503; red/green labels, foc
1976: Island
Testpressing-LP [b]: VD 255 A3B3
1987: Jive
CD [c]: C TANG 3
1987: Relativity
2LP [a]: 88561-8070-1; black labels, foc
2CD [a]: 88561-8070-2
1996: Sequel/Castle
CD [a]: 1034-2
1999: Castle
CD [a]: CMACD555
2002: Sanctuary
CD [a]: 06076-81244-2
2018: Varese Saraband
2LP [a]: 03020674495; opaque and translucent orange vinyl; limited edition of 2,000 copies
Zeit was also released as part of the sets In The Beginning, Three Classic Albums, Nebulous Dawn and The Pink Years Albums.

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