Exposé Online banner

Peter Baumann — Romance 76
(Bureau B BB250, 1976/2017, CD)

Peter Baumann — Trans Harmonic Nights
(Bureau B BB251, 1979/2016, CD)

by Henry Schneider, Published 2017-05-07

Romance 76 Cover artTrans Harmonic Nights Cover art

Peter Baumann was an integral part of Tangerine Dream from 1971 to 1977, which in my opinion was the group’s best period. So I was excited in 1976 when Peter Baumann released his first solo album Romance 76. I was amazed at the cleanness of the sound, which was partially influenced by David Bowie. The first two tracks, “Bicentennial Presentation” and “Romance,” contain typical Tangerine Dream pentatonic sequences, percussive electronics, and Peter’s catchy melodies. “Phase by Phase” then takes the listener into darker realms with analog synths, sequencers, and sepulchral chimes. The last three tracks, “Meadow of Infinity (Part 1),” “The Glass Bridge,” and “Meadow of Infinity (Part 2),” took up the second side of the LP and are basically three movements of one long abstract and dark orchestral composition.

Three years later Peter released his second solo album, Trans Harmonic Nights. Unlike the diversity of the music on Romance 76, the eight tracks on “Trans Harmonic Nights” contain catchy melodies, sequencers, Mellotron, and the occasional vocoder. The album opens with the razor-edged electronics of “This Day” followed by the heavy bass and drums of “White Bench and Black Beach.” “Chasing the Dream” contains a typical Tangerine Dream pentatonic sequence. “Biking up the Strand” is a happy, upbeat melody that would be great for cycling. Things then turn a bit minimal with “Phaseday” and its pulsating sequence, Mellotron, and vocoder. “Meridian Woodland” takes us into the dark forest with its eerie melody. “The Third Site” is a continuation of “Meridian Woodland.” The album closes with “Dance at Dawn” and its rapid percussive rhythm, synth trumpets, and pentatonic sequences.

Shortly after releasing Trans Harmonic Nights, Peter relocated to the US where he recorded two more albums that were below par: Repeat Repeat and Strangers in the Night (yes the Frank Sinatra song). What a disappointment to his fans! Romance 76 and Trans Harmonic Nights were the best of Peter’s solo career until 2016’s Machines of Desire. Thanks to Bureau B for bringing these two excellent albums of Berlin School electronics to wider audience!


Filed under: Reissues, 2017 releases, 1976 recordings, 2016 releases, 1979 recordings

Related artist(s): Peter Baumann

Latest news

2018-10-17
Eurock Documentary Seeks Funding – We've been fans and fellow travelers with Archie Patterson and his Eurock project on the journey to discover great music. After many years of promoting and trying to spread the word,a new phase is beginning: a documentary film. Things like this don't just happen, and money does not magically appear to make it happen, so it's up to the fans to get it done. » Read more

2018-09-29
Marty Balin RIP – One of the architects of the 60s psychedelic sound of San Francisco has died at the age of 76. Marty Balin was a singer, songwriter, and guitarist who was one of the founders of Jefferson Airplane. After the split of the original Airplane, Balin went on to form the highly successful Jefferson Starship. » Read more

2018-09-25
Help the Psychic Equalizer Avoid Extinction – Last year we reviewed the debut album by Psychic Equalizer, a musical project of Hugo Selles. He's now working on the ambitious follow-up to that release, and is seeking funding from listeners around the world. » Read more

2018-09-05
Krautrock Documentary Seeks Funding – The next installment of the Progressive Warriors documentary series will focus on the vast body of music that falls under the banner of "krautrock." As most of our readers will know, previous films have tackled RIO and the Canterbury scene, as well as what we might call "mainstream" prog rock. » Read more

2018-07-31
Tomasz Stańko RIP – Tomasz Stańko, one of the greats of Eastern European jazz, has died at the age of 76. Stańko's career started in Krzysztof Komeda's quintet, where he contributed trumpet from 1963-1967, when he formed his own group. He worked extensively with Edward Vesala, Don Cherry, Zbigniew Seifert, Chico Freeman, Howard Johnson, Cecil Taylor, and many others. Many of his recordings have been released by ECM, an association that began in the mid-70s. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

World's End Girlfriend - Seven Idiots – Occupying a distinct netherworld where the realms of electronic music, avant garde, post-rock, and modern classical music intersect, World's End Girlfriend (the nom de musique of Katsuhiko Maeda) has...  (2011) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues