Mirage – you only need the first fourteen minutes or so

Hearing Nils Frahm on 6 Music reminded me of Tangerine Dream, causing me to revisit Ricochet. Which gets my award for best electronic record: it’s wonderful throughout, there’s not a duff moment anywhere, brilliance is sustained for 38 minutes, it’s holistically perfect.

It proved impossible to revisit Ricochet without checking out my one and only Klaus Schulze record: Mirage which dates from 1977. Like Ricochet, Mirage contains two long pieces – Crystal Lake and Velvet Voyage – totalling 58 minutes.

As a whole Mirage doesn’t work quite as well as Ricochet. However the first half of Crystal Lake – fourteen minutes or so – is the best segment of electronic music ever recorded. That’s a rather strong assertion, and it’s based on incomplete knowledge of Mr Schulze: as noted Mirage is my sole album, yet wikipedia indicates a vast discography over the years, and – curiously – Mirage is not even mentioned in the main text section on the 1970s.

It’s just that I can’t imagine anything better than the first quarter of this

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One thought on “Mirage – you only need the first fourteen minutes or so

  1. Triggered by Froese’s death, I have been on a revisit to Tangerine Dream. In my view, they never repeated the heights they managed with Ricochet. I completely agree with your evaluation, 100%. But nothing in the TD catalogue gets close to Ricochet, and I am now exploring Schulze, whose music definitely has a Ricochet flavour (e.g. Timewind, which almost seems to quote it in some phrases).Even though Schulze seems to have left TD earlier, I have to say from listening to the music that he had a major hand in Ricochet.
    So now I am listening to Schulze to see if he produced anything as good by himself ….

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