Tangerine Dream's Optical Race

Tangerine Dream's Optical Race

Tangerine Dream's 1988 album Optical Race turned a completely new chapter in the story of the renowned German electronic music outfit. The band was founded and led by Edgar Froese, who would remain the only constant member of the pioneering synth group right until his death in January 2015.

Not only did the band's lineup change substantially in 1987, when composer Christopher Franke left the group after 17 consecutive years, but Froese had also switched the studio and live tech to run on Atari STs. Atari endorsed fully Tangerine Dream's hardware upgrade and even supported the band's Optical Race Tour 88, which featured several STs on stage.

These were major developments for synth pioneers who had impressed listeners ever since their first albums were released in the early 1970s. The 1974 album Phaedra even warranted a gold certificate in the UK, while Rubycon (1975) and Stratosfear (1976) struck silver.

In the 1980s, the movie industry took notice of Froese and his signature sound. Soon after, Tangerine Dream became hot property and scored more than 20 films. Many of them, like Sorcerer, Thief, Legend and Risky Business, are now considered classics, and are known for their distinct musical score and timeless, melodic tracks.

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