Boomkat Product Review:
Curdled synth trance funk from 1977 Netherlands
“Bureau B present a reissue of Jurriaan Andriessen's The Awakening Dream, originally released in 1977. Jurriaan Andriessen (1925-1996) was a Dutch composer. Although he was actually at home in classical music, he recorded three synthesizer albums in the late 1970s, the first of which, The Awakening Dream, is an outstanding excursion into experimental ambient and minimal music.
Andriessen himself, 52 years of age at the time, called it a "trance symphony". The music - perhaps surprisingly for a contemporary classical composer - is less in the tradition of his peers such as Pierre Boulez or Karlheinz Stockhausen and more in tune with the electronic sounds of the '70s emanating from Berlin, Düsseldorf, or Forst, the likes of Cluster, early Kraftwerk, and Tangerine Dream, in places echoing Conrad Schnitzler. Andriessen was familiar with the work of these artists, but was probably more influenced by minimalist composers like Philip Glass or synthesizer pioneer Walter Carlos whom he admired. The entire album is played on a Minimoog Model D, a Fender Rhodes piano, a Hohner Clavinet, and a Philicorda organ. It was recorded sound on sound, before the 8-track machine entered the studio, using two Revox A77 tape recorders.
Andriessen studied in Paris with Olivier Messiaen and in the USA with Serge Koussevitsky and Aaron Copland. Back in Holland he worked for radio, television and theatre. His compositions for state ceremonies such as the coronation of Queen Beatrix and the annual "Opening of Parliament" won him acclaim and he also wrote the music for the Oscar winning film The Assault (1986). Andriessen started to experiment with synthesizers on new compositions in the early 1970s. In 1973, he wrote music for Georg Büchner's play Leonce And Lena and performed it on the ARP 2500 synthesizer. Andriessen was more interested in the challenge of creating new, previously unheard sounds than he was in imitating existing instruments.
He strived to invent a novel, unique musical universe. Later he worked mainly with a Minimoog Model D, experimenting and recording in the Dream Studio, the home studio he built with his sons Gijs and Nils in The Hague. As a composer, Jurriaan was always ahead of his time. He loved research and enjoyed using uncommon or newly invented instruments in his compositions, often in unconventional formations. His last work, Jeux Des Vents, appeared in 1996. He died later the same year in The Hague.”