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Trans Europe Express Import, Original recording remastered

5 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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2 used from CDN$ 27.18

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (Oct. 6 2009)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Original recording remastered, Import
  • Label: Parlophone (Wea)
  • ASIN: B002N1AF86
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
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Product Description

Digitally remastered edition of this 1977 album from the groundbreaking German Electronic band. Features new cover art.

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Top Customer Reviews

By Peter Uys HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on Feb. 26 2011
Format: Audio CD
The theme of this enchanting work from 1977 is travel, giving the impression of a continental train ride with constantly changing scenery.

The overall style resembles their popular track Autobahn, with the same hypnotic qualities but with a wider symphonic scope. The vast melodic sweep provides its most memorable moments in songs like the lilting Europe Endlos and the title track, which reminds me of Bowie's Station to Station in its chugging rhythms.

The most explorative instrumental passages occur on Hall Of Mirrors whilst Metal On Metal and Abzug are both reprises of Trans Europa Express with industrial and dub undertones.

Franz Schubert is a beautiful melodious instrumental which recalls the atmospheric work of Peter Baumann and this magnificent album concludes with Endless Endless, a brief reprise of Europe Endless. This is electronic music at its very best, hypnotic and engaging. Almost as great as their masterpiece Radio-Activity.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0xa7dc4300) out of 5 stars 14 reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa7ca2e34) out of 5 stars Elegance and Decadence April 7 2010
By Tim Brough - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Having already created the aural electronic equivalent of driving on one of Europe's most famous roadways, Kraftwerk set about making the soundtrack to riding Europe's best known railroad line. "Trans Europe Express" is the electronic album that launched thousands more; everyone from David Bowie to Afrika Bambaataa to Radiohead has cited this album as an influence. In its 2009 remastered incarnation, "Trans Europe Express" gains in clarity and depth, and reinforces the fact that this 1977 album was decades ahead of its time.

This was the album where Kraftwerk began to manipulate not only their sound, but their look. The non-synthesized instruments from "Autobahn" were removed entirely and the interlocking title track/"Metal On Metal"/"Abzug" playout as a trip along the tracks with the monotonous clickety clack of the drum machines simulating the rolling cars. The deadpan voices chant the title and name drop meeting Iggy and Bowie in Berlin (an episode that really happened). It was the sound of the future, and sounds incredible even now.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa7ca5258) out of 5 stars Bringing back the late 70's Jan. 26 2014
By G. D. Cole - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
When I heard Europe Endless again for the first time in 20+ years, I got chills, but music does that to me sometimes. TEE is possibly the most iconic electronic album, ever IMHO. The trio of tunes that make up the title cut are mesmerizing. If you can't turn it up, make sure you listen to "Metal-on-Metal in headphones. It is a religious experience.
HASH(0xa7ca5060) out of 5 stars Iconic Kraftwerk; Important part of the history of electronic music Dec 8 2015
By Sex_Engr_RockNRoll - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
This isn't just a casual music album, this is a snapshot of electronic music as it was in 1977, back when people weren't even sure if electronic music was going to be something that you enjoyed at a dance club or in a concert hall. Also, there weren't really very many commercially made electronic instruments, so a lot of the music that you hear on this album is made from instruments that Kraftwerk made themselves. This means that no only did they write a compose the songs on this album, they designed the timbre of each sound!

**The songs**
There are relatively few songs on this album, but they are all fairly long, and one gets the sense that Kraftwerk worked on each one a lot before they decided they were satisfied and approved the album for release. One gets the impression that every small note shape, timbre, rhythm, and embellishment is there because the band decided to put it there, and nothing was accidental. The stereotypical German attitude toward precision certainly seems to be here.

1.) Europe Endless - A gentle start to the album, a happy beat that suggests the forward motion of travel. Bright percussive electronic sounds and occasional vocals with a pleasant German accent, sometimes distorted and sometimes not. Music already suggests train sounds and train travel, though the song does not commit explicitly toward trains.
2.) The Hall of Mirrors - A darker song, focuses on self consciousness and self-image issues. Repetitive, echoing, and with electronic sounds that suggest pacing footsteps. The vocals seem forlorn to me.
3.) Showroom Dummies - Somewhat silly in some ways, and more dark and ironic in others, this song is about mannequins in a store window, the lyrics are from the mannequins' first person perspective.
4.) Trans-Europe Express - This is the masterpiece of this album. The electronic instruments that they are using seem to perfectly capture the sound and spirit of a train and its sounds. It seems to suggest a train ride at night, because there is a dark mood to it. There is a highly distorted voice that just repeats "Trans-Europe Express" repeatedly as a sort of degenerate chorus, but then there is also non-distorted lyrics that have more content, and are not distorted. Both sets of lyrics are fairly dark and a little creepy. It is amazing to listen to how their notes and sounds artfully imitate a train.
5.) Metal on Metal - The previous Trans-Europe Express song seamlessly transitions into this song. For this reason, it is important that you purchase and enjoy both of these songs after each other. This song is very good for all of the same reasons as Trans-Europe Express is.
6.) Franz Schubert - This song is brighter and happier than the previous four songs. I like to think of it as when the sun comes up in the morning after a long night on the train, and you are looking at the beautiful green countryside of Germany.
7.) Endless Endless. This song is a seamless continuation of Franz Schubert, but with highly distorted, bright vocals that chant "Endless Endless" repeatedly. The timbre, tempo, and accompaniment evolve slowly over time, creating a trance-like atmosphere. The point is not really to listen to the lyrics, it is to study the subtle evolution of the song as it progresses, as with more modern Trance and House music.

**Buying and Listening Advice**
This is an incredible album that offers the modern listener a view of what very early electronic music was like, and the origins of where essentially all of our electronic music came from. Because this album was made well before the days of M3P's, and songs 4&5 and 6&7 continuous transition from one onto the next, it is best to buy this album as a whole, rather than picking out single songs. The Trans-Europe Express/Metal on Metal pair of songs is probably the best part of the album, but all of the songs are rather deep and provocative. Unlike most electronic music, it isn't really something you would play at a party. Instead, consider listening to this music if you feel quiet and meditative.

It is easy for me to give this album 5 stars because it is *so unique*. Enjoy!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa7ca5660) out of 5 stars The Sergeant Pepper's of electronic pop music. March 21 2014
By S. Caton - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Timeless, yet deeply rooted in its time. Both nostalgic and fresh simultaneously. Kraftwerk, being one of the most influential bands of all times, is at the height of their artistry on TEE. Simply put, a must have.
HASH(0xa7ca56cc) out of 5 stars Iconic Music Of Its Time Aug. 26 2013
By Stephen Mann - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Look, Kraftwerk music is pretty unique, and you either "get" it or you hate it. The music is one remove from minimalist and much like on the classic "Autobahn" is a study in recursive examination of simple interlocking themes. It isn't music for everyone.

As another reviewer with more insight has said, this album represented the point where Kraftwerk were solidly committing to the electronic instrumentation as the vehicle for their vision. Synths are doing all the work on this album without the acoustic and electric instruments that were occasionally in evidence on "Autobahn".

For me the album has many high spots, but I love the audio pun that extends the idea first tried out so successfully with "Autobahn" - Trans Europa Express/Metall auf Metal/Abzug. A musical work that recapitulates the monotony of a transcontinental train journey on a modern train; classic, funny, clever.

That said, I was seriously worried for a while that their next release would be "Watching Paint Dry", until I realized that both Autobahn and TEE had the idea of the tedium being in order to go from somewhere to somewhere else, enabled by modern technology (hence the choice of instrumentation).

In this day and age the analog electronic sound might be too simplistic for ears weaned on rich digital/sampled electronic soundscapes. On the other hand, the cost of finding out has fallen.