as of 01/25/2022 (Details)
A somewhat disappointing release from Tangerine Dream, Melrose, their last studio release for Private Music, was certainly targeted to capture the "adult alternative" market. The trio essentially take the rhythm-driven approach of Optical Race and make it more palatable and radio-friendly, as evidenced by the lackluster sax melodies on the title track. The album features many instrumentals that have a similar feeling--relatively energetic and upbeat, but also a bit fluffy. There are some grittier moments to be found, foremost on the haunting "Three Bikes in the Sky," a slow-moving, atmospheric piece with searing electric guitar work, while the lively electro-rock of "Dolls in the Shadow" and "Yucatan" also stand out. Tangerine Dream have never shied away from the obvious synthetic sounds of their work--it's a big part of their raison d'etre, after all--but here the machines seem to exert just as much influence as the humans behind them. Given Melrose's even-keeled nature, however, this album does make for agreeable background listening. --Bryan Reesman
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