There is a new Tangerine Dream in today’s worlds and they came to Toronto. The last Time Tangerine Dream was in town was 1992. This new Dream are new players who we are now being introduced to. The Musical Director- Thorsten Quaeshning on Keyborads, Hoshiko Yamane on Violin and Paul Frick on Keyborads. Thorsten walked on stage and humbly introduced the new band and lightly made jokes to warm up this chilly Toronto crowd. Toronto stood well reserved as if sending a message to get on with the show and prove that you are the new Tangerine Dream. Everybody was both excited and apprehensive towards this new line-up. I was trying to figure out how this new band was going to win over this cold audience. It turns out that Thorsten is smarter than I thought. As he was trying to win our trust, he explained the Tangerine Dream sound and played a few notes from his keyboard. He hit I believe to be an E chord, and the sound went right through your chest. What a fun feeling. About 80% into the concert, there was a moment when you heard that exact same note go through your chest and it warmed up the audience immensely.
They improvised the opening and then slipped into the classic Pheadra. From there we move forward in time and moved through their huge catalog of music. Each piece there came a different metaphysical trip. The level of being present was at an all time high, because everyone was hypnotized by the psychedelic journey that was being presented to them. Each trip received a joyous response. Personally, I would never walk in wanting to know the set list, because this is well beyond knowing the music, it is about being present and letting yourself open up to the depth of the music.
What I found fascinating was that even though they were playing with their past catalog, the way they modernized it was both challenging and rewarding. They were 2 or 3 really modern pieces that sounded more like going to a rave, so this band is knocking on the door of our youth to pick up this music and enjoy it.
This was my 3rd time seeing Tangerine Dream and at one point during a monstrous piece of music I was staring at Thorsten and I can see him channeling Edgar Froese. The way he was hunched over his keyboards, the grim look of having deep knowledge and the seriousness of his task at hand were all energies I used to love watching when Edgar was leading the band. If you looked very closely, you could add a Harry Potter reference in there as well.
Paul Frick seemed very quiet and just wanted to play his part. He was handling all the minor moments that make up the sparkle in the sound. He didn’t need to do the heavy lifting, he needed to decorate and dress up the piece to give it a full and illustrious presentation.
Hokshike Yamane was also very meek and mild in nature, but her quietness came out with a highly disciplined manner. Her control over her violin to make it blend in flawlessly into the keyboard was beautifully intense and her precision had the accuracy of a spaceship docking.
The evening finished off with a special guest on keyboards, named John Kameel Farah. I know nothing of this man, so if you have any info, please share it with me. He added that extra flavor that brought us back to the old Tangerine Dream sound and then improvised the future with the three other players. This improv went on for 33 minutes. That is one hell of an encore.
As a side note, I wore my Nash the Slash hat to the show, in honour of Toronto’s Electronic artist. About 35 years ago, I was over at Nash’s home and he put on Tangerine Dream, and that was my introduction to this music that I have loved for most of my life. Throughout the show I pictured myself standing beside Nash the Slash, to see if he would approve of this new band. If I know Nash, it would have been one really loud, HELL YA!.
If somebody asked me what colour do I dream, I would answer Tangerine.
Here are a couple images of Tangerine Dream: