The ’80s were ripe for space-set soundscapes, propelled by a surge in sci-film popularity alongside synthesziers becoming more of a realistic option for the average artist. Home keyboards became more affordable, and many artists — who were also infatuated by the likes of Star Wars — began to embrace a more contemplative mystique, spearheaded by synth-friendly additions to their arsenal.
As such, the latest album from Luke Tangerine is an especially nostalgic delight — capturing the sense of excitement and mystery when synths became more prevalent in the music landscape, coinciding with apt tonal deliveries and space-set media of the era. Interstellar Radio presents an infectious, heady instrumental synth-pop sound throughout, evoking space in the best ways possible. “I just tried to bring a new look to the retrowave genre between cheesy melodies and cool groove,” the artist explains.
The Frankfurt, Germany-based artist excels throughout the release, from the eerie alien-feeling “Lunar Eclipse” to the pulsating pop immediacy of opener “Pulsar.” “Solar Storm” is also firmly in that latter tonal category, as whirring synths drive quickly into an exuberant, colorful melodic accompaniment. The arp-friendly nature of “Oumuamua,” named after an especially mysterious space object, also proves riveting. Interstellar Radio is a standout atmospheric offering from Luke Tangerine.
“Solar Storm” and other tracks featured this month can be streamed on the updating Obscure Sound’s ‘Best of August 2023’ Spotify playlist.