Ultimate Transmissions UTCD 002 70'12" CD £8.00 + p&p
Tachyon Phase 1
at Tachyon Studio (September 1984).
Alan Freeman: synths, effects, voice.
Back in 1984, the "Tachyon" was thought to be "a theoretical particle, capable of travelling faster than the speed of light", whereas today scientists claim to have proved its existence, in effect disproving many theories on the impossibility of faster than light travel. Such an idea, with the influence of many a science-fiction story, where faster than light travel is linked in with time travel or time dilation, it amounted to a fascinating concept for an album.
"Tachyon" is intriguing for us today, when we listen-back to it and realise the references and influences. Of the Conrad Schnitzler dedications "Contempt" is obvious, whereas "Black Garden" isn't so much. Also in there are two dedications to Teddy Lasry ("Severed Stone" and "e=mc²") which may come across a bit Vangelis-like to many, as well as influences from: Cluster, Dome, Heldon, The Residents, Stockhausen, Throbbing Gristle, etc. Being non-musicians, the way we put all this together is more from the viewpoint of sound-artists, relying more on colour and texture than normal melodic composition, yet I'm still surprised how melodic and "composed" much of this is! The resulting potpourri of all this is indeed diverse, and still surprisingly fresh.
not often you can have electronic space music in the crossover section, but
the range and scope of music that exists on these CD's spans taste genres
ranging from synth through psychedelic to industrial and Krautrock. All are
the work of Krautrock archivists and Euro-rock fans supreme, Steve & Alan
Freeman, joined on the Endgame CD by Jim Tetlow. The Alto Stratus album is
what some may call the more' demanding' of the albums and I would recommend
the double as a starting point if you don't want to jump in with both feet.
"Tachyon" consists of two half-hour tracks plus a couple of shorter
ones, and this is a world of other worldly sounds, effects and musical
landscapes. First off, it's not your 'traditional' electronic space music for
a start, as it is founded on a bed of exploration and discovery, producing
music that takes you on a real headtrip, with echoed effects, buzzing
electronics, repeated, treated passages that mutate from one soundscape into
another and back. In the album you can hear elements of influences ranging
from Kluster to vintage '70's Gong at one bizarre point, and the whole thing
is improvised and yet has some sort of alien structure, a feel that the music
really does have a direction and sense of purpose, although you focus on all
sorts of different things each time you play it. The music is not what you'd
call 'normal' in that there are no tunes or melodies or rhythms in the
'traditional' sense, yet at the other end of the scale, the music is black
and dark, spacey in the eerie sense, almost industrial without being
bombastic or overblown, but above all a real auditory experience, the likes
of which have not been heard for a long, long time. The way of the force was
with them on this, and you could imagine some parts being perfect for use in
science fiction films. It's an enjoyable voyage to parts unknown for sure,
but not for the faint-hearted.
Originally a cassette (various editions) - quantity unknown -
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