Brian Eno - C or D?

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I went through the archives, and I don't see this one anywhere.

So, have at it.

James Morris (HorrayJames), Thursday, 22 January 2004 14:37 (sixteen years ago) link

Classic because he was the 70s avant-garde. Classic for Another Green World and Before And After Science, classic for his collaboration in Bowie's Berlin trilogy, classic for his record label which released the likes of Gavin Bryars, classic for so many things.

Jonathan Z., Thursday, 22 January 2004 14:41 (sixteen years ago) link

here come the warm jets is the best pop album made by anyone (as of today).

Phoebe Dinsmore, Thursday, 22 January 2004 14:44 (sixteen years ago) link

yesterday i opened up the copy of here come the warm jets i had out of the library to find that in addition to the actual cd was a cdr copy of it. which was nice.

i remember the ambient stuff being way better than i expected, too, though i haven't heard it in a while.

toby (tsg20), Thursday, 22 January 2004 14:52 (sixteen years ago) link

Love 'another green world' and 'before and after science' (the last track on the latter was the last thing I heard that made me all warm and fuzzy inside). Like the ambient stuff.

Didn't care for 'heroes' from the one listen I gave it a couple of years ago.

Julio Desouza (jdesouza), Thursday, 22 January 2004 14:56 (sixteen years ago) link

Absolutely classic. Love his music (95% of it), love his productions (not just Talking Heads but also U2 and, damn it, James!), love his collaborations (with Bowie, John Cale, Harold Budd, Daniel Lanois...). Lately his ambient work has been a little bland but it's no less theory-based than some of the stuff in the '70s. His work with self-generating music may be more interesting than the results, but who knows what application it may have in a few years?

And I'm a sucker for the Wall of Eno vocals he adds to everything he works on. For a somewhat limited singer, he harmonizes with himself really well, from his one man band "The Lion Sleeps Tonight" to more recent stuff like "Someday" (that beautiful James song from the very underrated "Laid").

Anyone ever hear the NPR piece on "Once in a Lifetime," which details just what Eno brought to the track? He basically added the call and response chorus, worthy of the co-write credit. Eno also gets co-writer credit on "Heroes."

Josh in Chicago (Josh in Chicago), Thursday, 22 January 2004 14:56 (sixteen years ago) link

Classic....if only for "Backwater" and "Needle in the Camel's Eye".

Alex in NYC (vassifer), Thursday, 22 January 2004 15:00 (sixteen years ago) link

Classic. It's hard for me to get interested enough in the question to argue the point, because I kind of take it for granted. That doesn't mean everything he has touched has turned to gold, but here are some reasons I rate him highly:

1. Taking Tiger Mountain (By Strategy) (the only solo Eno album I am enthusiastic about in its entirety), as well as individual tracks on some of his other albums (especially Before and After Science).

2. His touch as producer on what are often the best albums of the bands he's worked with: Remain in Light, Bowie, Devo (I forgot this--using allmusic as a cheat-sheet now), etc.

3. Collaborations with: Fripp (although I would say say that Fripp carries most of the weight there--but still, I think Eno's presence counts), Jon Hassel, etc.

Etc. because I have to go.


Rockist Scientist (rockistscientist), Thursday, 22 January 2004 15:26 (sixteen years ago) link

4. Even some of his theoretical musings are worthwhile, especially that talk on using the recording studio as an instrument.

Rockist Scientist (rockistscientist), Thursday, 22 January 2004 15:29 (sixteen years ago) link

Didn't he admit to drinking his own urine recently? The man's not well.

Alex in NYC (vassifer), Thursday, 22 January 2004 15:31 (sixteen years ago) link

Classic, of course! "Julie with..." and "By This River" remain two of the prettiest songs I've ever heard.

anthony kyle monday (akmonday), Thursday, 22 January 2004 15:31 (sixteen years ago) link

Takign Tiger Mountain, Another Green World, Before and After Science, the synth climax on Virginia Plain, Remain in Light, Low, On Land and providing most of the redeeming features to make U2 a thousand times more bearable than every other vague anthem-monger are enough to qualify him as utter classic no matter how over-rated Warm Jets and Airports are and how crappy his solo output has been for about 20 years.

fcussen (Burger), Thursday, 22 January 2004 15:41 (sixteen years ago) link

He drank his own urine in the "A year with swollen index" (or whatever) book from 1995, he'd watched a film, had a bottle of wine and couldn't be bothered to move to take a leak, so peed in the empty wine bottle, then wondered what it tasted like. As you do. I seem to remember this was related to his tale of finding a way to piss in Duchamp's toilet, or something like that.

Of course, the man and the vast majority of his music, and his influence, is classic. Couldn't live without "Taking tiger mountain" or "Music for airports" amongst others. Those two boxed sets are two of the best investments I've ever made.

Rob M (Rob M), Thursday, 22 January 2004 15:44 (sixteen years ago) link

That Passengers album ain't so bad either. Of its time 'n' all but still...

fcussen (Burger), Thursday, 22 January 2004 16:02 (sixteen years ago) link

Been enjoying the hell out of Eno/Cale Wrong Way Up recently. It's a little dated in that 80s-ish "Let's Incorporate African Pop into Western Pop" kind of way, but all the simple songs get to me.

Mark (MarkR), Thursday, 22 January 2004 16:14 (sixteen years ago) link

"The Big Ship" from Another Green World puts me in a trance. Don't drive to it.

Jazzbo (jmcgaw), Thursday, 22 January 2004 17:09 (sixteen years ago) link

Plus there's all that stuff I enjoyed a lot at one time, even if I'm not into it now, like My Life in the Bush of Ghosts.

Plus the Obscure Music series, which has some good titles.

Rockist Scientist, Thursday, 22 January 2004 17:12 (sixteen years ago) link

I think one of the reasons i like him so much is that I am a child of Napster and the incessant dilettantism and boundary-pushing is something I can realte to.

fcussen (Burger), Thursday, 22 January 2004 17:47 (sixteen years ago) link

Classic. Here Comes The Warm Jets is the REAL Alien rock. Fuck Ziggy.

Anthony Miccio (Anthony Miccio), Thursday, 22 January 2004 18:11 (sixteen years ago) link

If for nothing else "Another Green World"

Its just so coool. Weird pop and ambienty bits floated against each other in the nicest way, and my four year old loves to sing "I'll come running" which has got to get him some points somewhere.

hector (hector), Thursday, 22 January 2004 18:17 (sixteen years ago) link

1972-1985 inclusive, everything he touched. including the interviews, many of which are up on enoweb, but I'd buy a book that compiled them.

then, suddenly, like a switch being thrown...

when 'wrong way up' came out an interview disc was distributed to radio, where he's sounding and dull, then at the end he begins talking about the recent birth of his daughter and how unimportant the theoretical side of music had become to him, and how now he just wanted to relax and play tunes. which makes me happy for eno the man, but keeping up with the last decade of releases has been a punishing experience.

'spinning away' from 'wrong way up', still excellent though

(Jon L), Thursday, 22 January 2004 19:45 (sixteen years ago) link

Unbelievable songwriter--I was in a one-off Eno cover band a couple of months ago, and we could not BELIEVE how much mileage he got out of incredibly simple structures. I mean, "The True Wheel"--that song has _four chords_ in it, and it sounds like the lushest deepest most complicated thing ever. "Third Uncle" has one.

Douglas (Douglas), Thursday, 22 January 2004 20:16 (sixteen years ago) link

already embarrassed about my grumbly post. if I ever say anything about the 90's output, it's only because the 72-85 stretch is so bafflingly inspired. if I ever lost my record collection I'd be buying most of these back first.

(Jon L), Thursday, 22 January 2004 20:37 (sixteen years ago) link

I mean, "The True Wheel"--that song has _four chords_ in it, and it sounds like the lushest deepest most complicated thing ever.


Ned Raggett (Ned), Friday, 23 January 2004 02:44 (sixteen years ago) link

Strange, I've just sung through "The true wheel" in my head and can only count three... oh, just got to the end part where the fourth chord comes in. Sorry. My God, what a song!

"Ding ding!"

Rob M (Rob M), Friday, 23 January 2004 08:41 (sixteen years ago) link

Anyone that even cosiders sayind "dud" is loco. Amazing, influential, smartest man in music, etc. I want him to be my dad.

anode (anode), Friday, 23 January 2004 12:27 (sixteen years ago) link

five months pass...
One thing I don't think I've said about Taking Tiger Mountain by Strategy is that I got a copy* around the time that I had just about lost my belief in Christian doctrine, so it took on kind of a heavy symbolic weight of the scarey, uncertain, world of religious disbelief. (Obviously I hadn't only listened to Christian music up until then. That's not the point.) I want to exmphasize, this is a symbolic purpose I was giving it: I don't think it has much to do with the album itself (although it is kind of interesting in light of some things I've read by him essential outlining an anti-fundamentalism--of whatever source--stance). Just the cover itself took on a certain weight, and I wasn't totally happy about it. It didn't look like an especially happy world (and I've never been unambivalently attracted to hipster jadedness, if I've ever been attracted by it at all), but it seemed somewhat inevitable that I would be joining it. Graphically, it was: the cover of Taking Tiger Mountain vs. the dull blue cover of Cornelius Van Til's Defense of the Faith (given to me by my brother-in-law). I think I was more visually oriented then. Anyway, book covers or album covers could easily become suffused with an emotional coloring.

*I can't remember if I bought a copy or received it as a gift, but probably the latter. I used to get my older brother to buy me "weird"** records for my birthday and Christmas.

**I think he thought it was weird anyway (judging by his response to what I listened to on the radio), but I think he was a little amused to watch me growing up and getting into punk and new wave, and new bands he hadn't heard of, or other stuff that seemed esoteric to him. I think he may have bought me this album, the first Psychedelic Furs album, and Fripp's Let the Power Fall, and some a John Coltrane collection, all at my request. Now I'm getting all sentimental about my older brother. I miss being close to my family, and it's all Brian Eno's fault--well, not exactly.

Rockist Scientist, Wednesday, 21 July 2004 01:42 (sixteen years ago) link

Inspired by o. nate, sort of.

Rockist Scientist, Wednesday, 21 July 2004 01:46 (sixteen years ago) link


James Slone (Freon Trotsky), Wednesday, 21 July 2004 02:32 (sixteen years ago) link

that was a great post, rockist. thanks.

M@tt He1geson (Matt Helgeson), Wednesday, 21 July 2004 02:36 (sixteen years ago) link

xpost Interesting story rockist. Still, Taking Tiger is Brian Eno at his worst/most/annoying (lyrically) to me. What about the lyrics hit home for you?

artdamages (artdamages), Wednesday, 21 July 2004 02:38 (sixteen years ago) link

It wasn't the lyrics, it was more the entire package (literally). I don't have a functional copy of the album right now, so I haven't heard it for a while.

Possibly the fact that I often couldn't make out the lyrics or didn't know what he was talking about contributed to my liking the songs. "With Burgundy, Tizer and Rye/Twelve sheets of foolscap: don't ask me why." I'm still largely in the dark about these lines, for example. I think I only found out what foolscap is in the last few years and I've already forgotten the details.

I kind of like the lyrics to "True Wheel." I am looking at a lyrics page now, and I find myself saying, oh, is that how it goes? I really am not even hearing what he's saying a lot of the time.

Rockist Scientist, Wednesday, 21 July 2004 02:51 (sixteen years ago) link

The lyrics are not the first thing I noticed about TTM(BS) either. I mean some of the lines (e.g., "burning airlines give you so much more") kind of stick in my mind, but I think that's more a function of being wedded to a good melody. I was in a bar where this guy I know works and he was playing songs from his iPod over the stereo. At one point I asked him, Is this the Thinking Fellers? And he said, no it's Brian Eno. Then later another song came on, and I asked him if it was the Swell Maps. Again it was Eno. It turns out both songs were on TTM(BS). That's when I knew I needed to hear the rest of the album.

o. nate (onate), Wednesday, 21 July 2004 03:28 (sixteen years ago) link

wow, yeah, hearing eno (after soo much indie stuff) really is amazing (and it seems like he just pulled half of it out of his ass) xpost

artdamages (artdamages), Wednesday, 21 July 2004 03:33 (sixteen years ago) link

Classic, for all his instrumental music from the start to the end, and for 'A year With Swollen Appendices' (in my opinion anyway)

the music mole (colin s barrow), Wednesday, 21 July 2004 03:36 (sixteen years ago) link

I'm curious: is there anyone reading this thread who's never listened to Eno? Anyone been inspired to after all the hosannas here?

Douglas (Douglas), Wednesday, 21 July 2004 04:27 (sixteen years ago) link

I really haven't heard enough !!

Sonny A. (Keiko), Wednesday, 21 July 2004 04:51 (sixteen years ago) link

I find "Put A Straw Under Baby" hilarious (as a fallen catholic). Taking Tiger Mountain is the only of his solo/pop records I like. for his ambient work - Music For Airports, Discreet Music, and the Fripp/Eno ones are great.

sherm, Wednesday, 21 July 2004 15:31 (sixteen years ago) link

i have two eno records.

music for airports = nice but forgettable, put aside after a couple of listens.

apollo = stunningly beautiful, one of my most played albums in recent times.

with this in mind, what next?

weasel diesel (K1l14n), Wednesday, 21 July 2004 15:42 (sixteen years ago) link

I had only heard some of his ambient stuff up until a few months ago! (not couting roxy music!)

artdamages (artdamages), Wednesday, 21 July 2004 16:47 (sixteen years ago) link


try no pussyfooting, with fripp.

peter smith (plsmith), Wednesday, 21 July 2004 16:50 (sixteen years ago) link

I rate his first 4 rock LPs classic. "Tiger Mountain" contains some of the best words I know. "Before and After Science" is very strong, esp. the "rhythm" side. As for the later stuff, I like "Nerve Net" and his collab with Cale "One Way Up." Not such a big fan of a lot of his ambient music, fine as it is. I'd put "Green World" and his Jon Hassell collab from '80 at the top of the list myself. Reading his diary I do get the impression he's a pretentious little guy, but he's done a lot so I suppose he earned it.

eddie hurt (ddduncan), Wednesday, 21 July 2004 16:57 (sixteen years ago) link

Classic, for most of the reasons already stated. If you're interested, there is an excellent, but long, article by Lester Bangs on Eno. You can read it here:

erv (Abe Froman), Wednesday, 21 July 2004 21:04 (sixteen years ago) link


a musical genius, the godfather of Ambient, the mastermind of warm synthesis, although the cause of a lot of shit (ie damp snares in 80s music from Low) still one of the true heads!

A let me emphasize his Ambient series - i don't understand why anyone hasn't yet. On Land, man! and lets not mention the second side of Day of Radiance with Laraaji (the first side i admit being...well). Most of my feelings on Before and After Science, Another Green World have meen mentioned.

And on a last note, My Life in the Bush of Ghosts is fucking ingenius record :)

Rob McD (Rob McD), Thursday, 22 July 2004 04:58 (sixteen years ago) link

1st three solo albums are indespencable, punch your mom in the throat and steal money from her purse to buy these records, you need them. solo album #4 before and after sicence was an over considered creative disaster and not worth your hard earned record money, this record was why he stopped making rock records. after this you need anything he did with Harold Budd, you need Low by David Bowie, Oh Jesus Christ do you need Low by David Bowie, rob a bank get Low by David Bowie, pilfer from the sunday collection plate, knock over an old lady, buy a copy of Low by David Bowie, assasinate George W for Al Queda bounty money, decapitate a government contractor... whatever you need to do, get a copy of Low by David Bowie, you need Ambient 4: On Land, and Apollo, AM2 Plateau of Mirrors. Buy copies of Brian Eno and the vertical color of sound by Eric Tamm, and A Year With Swollen Appendices by Brian Eno, as these books will make your life infinitely more mysterious and interesting and delicious. Do what you need to do, I cannot force your hand, but seriously get the books, you will thank me later.

Disco Nihilist (mjt), Thursday, 22 July 2004 08:24 (sixteen years ago) link

christ, I drink a bunch of alcohol and then a bunch of coffee, and all of a sudden I cannot spell.

seriously, listen to the title track from Taking Tiger Mountain or the first track on Warm Jets and get back to me, you will be a convert y0.

Disco Nihilist (mjt), Thursday, 22 July 2004 08:27 (sixteen years ago) link

You know what else I think? I think Kate Bush's The Dreaming bears a strange resemblance to Taking Tiger Mountain, thematically (all the secret agent drama, the Asian references). The lyrics aren't goofy the same way as Eno's, and the albums certainly don't sound the same, but the imaginary scenarios seem a bit similar (even if Eno's are more indeterminate).

Rockist Scientist (rockistscientist), Thursday, 22 July 2004 20:29 (sixteen years ago) link

I think I like The Dreaming again. I like almost everything at the moment. My brain may be overheated.

My neighbors must wonder what's up when they walk by my apartment door and hear me playing music with English lyrics.

Rockist Scientist (rockistscientist), Thursday, 22 July 2004 20:35 (sixteen years ago) link

I don't understand how anyone could be so hostile toward before and after science. I don't much like the first couple songs but c'mon, the second side is beautiful. julie with? by this river? these are undeniable!

kyle (akmonday), Thursday, 22 July 2004 21:10 (sixteen years ago) link

absolutely, anthony. the second side of before + after science is the music i'd like to hear in my dreams.

alex in mainhattan (alex63), Thursday, 22 July 2004 21:16 (sixteen years ago) link

that’s one of his best imo (neroli)

brimstead, Friday, 14 February 2020 18:29 (five months ago) link

I don’t really like music for airports 😬

brimstead, Friday, 14 February 2020 18:30 (five months ago) link

“This sounds like waiting in line”
“Music for those fancy bathrooms”

I feel like this chimes with Enos original theory of ambient, and the more prescient he becomes the harder it is to hear the music as revolutionary. Probably the same goes for Satie and Stravinsky.

29 facepalms, Friday, 14 February 2020 18:43 (five months ago) link

The sound of waiting in line is, like, hoobastank, Ed Sheehan

brimstead, Friday, 14 February 2020 18:52 (five months ago) link

two weeks pass...

how had I never heard Eno's mix of Massive Attack's "Protection"? it fucking rules

The Troops™ (jamescobo), Wednesday, 4 March 2020 02:44 (five months ago) link

I like all of Eno's unexpected remixes of that era. Massive Attack, Suede, Depeche Mode ... even EMF!

Josh in Chicago, Wednesday, 4 March 2020 02:46 (five months ago) link

two weeks pass...

Love that this is happening. They’ve done less work together than you’d think but the work they have done is quite good. In addition to /Apollo/, the concluding track on Roger’s /Voices/ is just magic. Roger’s second record, /Between Tides/ (produced by Michael Brook and w no Brian involvement) is a total masterpiece.

I believe they were somewhat estranged until recently.

Released today – I’m a few tracks in (three of these had been issued on Spotify prior to the full release). This is lovely. “Celeste” finds this extraordinary place about two minutes in that I can’t get enough of. “Blonde” begins with a quintessentially plaintive Roger piano melody that never quite resolves where you expect it to – before Brian adds a gentle sprinkle of synthesizer plucks as it repeats. A number of these tracks live in this space between piano, Rhodes and synthesizer without it ever being entirely clear which is the most dominant. More miniature than their collaborations on the Apollo: Expanded reissue but really compelling.

Naive Teen Idol, Friday, 20 March 2020 04:59 (four months ago) link

Any one know the story on how he came to produce this, a 2017 album by Spanish band The Gift? Don't remember hearing anything about it.

with hidden noise, Friday, 20 March 2020 05:55 (four months ago) link


I've never heard of that! Portuguese band. Apparently he not only produced it but co-wrote a lot of it. Also, made a rare live performance with them! And not just Eno, but Eno *and* Flood!

Gonçalves met Eno at a gallery in Brazil in 2011 – according to him Eno “fell in love with the band, we fell in love with him, Sonia asked him if he wanted to join us, and we spent the last four years working on this”.

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 20 March 2020 13:37 (four months ago) link

Here’s the story I found online:

Gonçalves met Eno at a gallery in Brazil in 2011 – according to him Eno “fell in love with the band, we fell in love with him, Sonia asked him if he wanted to join us, and we spent the last four years working on this”.

“We’re very proud of it, and we know he (Eno) is as well, which is important,” he says. “For us it was a pleasure to work with him, we had a lot of fun, it changed the way we looked at songs completely, and it was a very good journey – a hard job but now the job is done.”

Flood was brought in on Eno’s suggestion, and the band are thrilled with what the legendary producer has done for the record.

“You can’t get any better than that,” Tavares beams. “It was funny because they got together for the first time in years, and it was like ‘oh! Here we are again’. And Flood is such an amazing person, an amazing artist. And more than just the technical side of things, we had a fantastic experience with these people.

“I think we speak the same language. Every time we weren’t comfortable with something we discussed it and came up with a solution that worked for both sides. And one of the things that I felt was that Brian and Flood had this confidence in us. They wanted to know what we cared about, what we know as well.”

IIRC, he met Leo Abrahams in a guitar shop.

Naive Teen Idol, Friday, 20 March 2020 13:55 (four months ago) link

Had the Eno/Eno album playing in the background, and what turned out to be "Obsidian" definitely the first to really catch my attention.

It's all pretty ... pretty. Kind of church music as audio screen saver.

Josh in Chicago, Sunday, 22 March 2020 03:28 (four months ago) link

It is. But it also rewards closer listening.

Naive Teen Idol, Sunday, 22 March 2020 04:20 (four months ago) link

Nice insight into the brother’s working methods here.

Dan Worsley, Tuesday, 24 March 2020 22:33 (four months ago) link

I listed to a bit of that album by The Gift. Not bad! Very '90s Eno, in a good way, a la James.

Josh in Chicago, Tuesday, 24 March 2020 23:03 (four months ago) link

new Roger & Brian is exactly the sequel to 'Voices'. pretty reassuring to have this here this week.

Milton Parker, Wednesday, 25 March 2020 00:23 (four months ago) link

As a big fan of "Voices" ... I don't like this as much as "Voices." But I do like this.

Josh in Chicago, Wednesday, 25 March 2020 01:33 (four months ago) link

It'd be a difficult record to top, but it's so obviously the same team & it's a grower

Milton Parker, Wednesday, 25 March 2020 03:23 (four months ago) link

/ new one is a grower

Milton Parker, Wednesday, 25 March 2020 03:48 (four months ago) link

Nice insight into the brother’s working methods here.

Was pulling this up just as I saw this post. Agreed, it's very good.

Worth noting: starting around 9'00" the interviewer plays four short MIDI files of the same piece Brian emailed him that show how the track went from a melodic piano piece Roger sent him to a typically textured (treated) and layered piece with multiple parts and a slowed tempo yet ... still very much the piece Roger sent him.

There are so few examples of Brian sharing his actual working methods that this is pretty good stuff (hereis another he did a few years ago, demonstrating how he makes generative music -- the drum stuff a few minutes in shows how good he's gotten at this).

I really like this record.

Naive Teen Idol, Wednesday, 25 March 2020 16:57 (four months ago) link

Alright NIT, list your favorite Eno works from the last 30 years. I've got some listening time on my hands and I want to revisit some things I've skipped or didn't give enough attention.

Gerald McBoing-Boing, Wednesday, 25 March 2020 17:43 (four months ago) link

You sure you want 30 years? I'd suggest going back 20 at most, to get past his really busy '90s.

Josh in Chicago, Wednesday, 25 March 2020 17:52 (four months ago) link

(getting older thoughts)

when i hear "30 years" i still automatically think of 1980. oof

Karl Malone, Wednesday, 25 March 2020 18:05 (four months ago) link

Anyway, I'd say, of the last 20 years:

Someday World/High Life (both with Karl Hyde)
The Ship (solo, more or less ambient_
Reflection (solo, more or less ambient)
Another Day On Earth (vocal)
Everything That Happens Will Happen Today (with David Byrne)

If you're bored, Curiosities Vol. 1 and 2 has some neat stuff in it.

Josh in Chicago, Wednesday, 25 March 2020 23:29 (four months ago) link

The Hyde stuff is great.

Was not a fan of the Byrne collab, except the single.

The Ship was pretty good, except when he sings.

rawdogging the pandemic (hardcore dilettante), Thursday, 26 March 2020 01:44 (four months ago) link

cool to see that Eno uses Logic! (that second clip that Naive Teen Idol posted)

the guy interviewing him seems absolutely amazed, but it really isn't that complicated (for real), not much more than, say, discreet music

i like your list Josh! my faves of his recent era are similar. ranked:

The Ship
Finding Shore

i really haven't enjoyed his vocal works, during my lifetime (83-), which is odd because i adore his canonic first four vocal albums

just settling in for a listen to the new one. i've appreciated Voices (especially since picking up a cheap LP a while back), so i'm very curious about what their combo sounds like 30 years later

Karl Malone, Thursday, 26 March 2020 01:50 (four months ago) link

i need to listen to the Karl Hyde collabs more - they came out during a weird time for me and i didn't give them much time

Karl Malone, Thursday, 26 March 2020 01:51 (four months ago) link

Favorite two post 90’s are ‘New Space Music’ (a title that dares you to take it seriously but the piece is seriously functional) and the Scape app

and probably ‘Mixing Colours’

Lux, Reflection and Lightness good too. Another Day On Earth has moments especially with the Japanese bonus track at the end

Fairly loyal and still listening to everything he does at least once

Milton Parker, Thursday, 26 March 2020 02:14 (four months ago) link

The Ship was pretty good, except when he sings.

hard disagree

since 2000, my favorite things have been the Eno/Schwalm 2001 shows, Music For Installations, The Ship, bits of Small Craft and Another Day, and probably Lux

I need to make time for the Hyde collabs, have barely skimmed them

sleeve, Thursday, 26 March 2020 02:22 (four months ago) link

At the time the Hyde albums did little for me, too, for some reason. But when I re-listened a couple of years back I couldn't see what I couldn't see in them, they're pretty great.

I love his voice, full stop, so pretty much love everything he sings on. In fact, the only thing of his that I can't recall at all, really, is the Paul Simon album, which is hilarious, because if you look at his wikipedia entry ... no one's bothered to update it in there, either!,_mixes,_and_guest_appearances

Speaking of which, I've posted this several times, I'm sure, but this remains my favorite Eno what-the-hell-is-he-doing-there? deep cut:

Forget what the Walkabouts were doing on Sub Pop in 1991, how the heck did Eno come to work with them?

Josh in Chicago, Thursday, 26 March 2020 02:46 (four months ago) link

These are good suggestions! I did a Spotify list of late period Eno gems some years back but here are some of the songs that haven’t been mentioned too much elsewhere:

Brian Eno "The Harness" -- from the unreleased My Squelchy Life, this has the instrumentation and production of Nerve Net but the melody could be from 1975.

Eno and Cale "One Word" -- this whole record is great, and "Spinning Away" is the Eno classic here, but this is probably the best fusion of the two's sensibilities -- they harmonize brilliantly together, the lyrics are great, the call and response chorus is killer and the "miles and miles away" climax is a rush. "The Woodbridge Mix" is a great and widens the soundfield a bit.

Bryan Ferry "I Thought" -- this is a gorgeous duet to close a great return to form record for Ferry. They never even sang together in Roxy!

David Byrne "One Fine Day" -- one of Eno's great hymns. Byrne sings the lead and wrote the lyrics but you can really imagine Eno belting this one out (and his harmonies are classic). There are a bunch of fun tunes on this record, but this one is so pure.

Brian Eno "And Then So Clear" -- Another Day on Earth is the first record of his where Eno sounded sad to me. This tune uses a pitch effect on his vocals but it's really gorgeous.

U2 "Moment of Surrender" -- poss. the great lost U2 song. The record it's from, (No Line on the Horizon), completely stiffed but this tune is almost perfect. Bono's vocal is really raw (in a good way) -- and the textures are really engaging and diverse. There's a great story online about how they did this song -- basically it came together almost fully formed in the midst of a really difficult recording process for the band. It pretty much started with Eno kicking around doing weird rhythm stuff.

Eno and Schwalm "More Dust" -- Drawn From Life is sort of a forgotten entry in Eno's canon, a little trip-hop with these quasi-Bollywood string lines playing the melodies. I don't love the whole thing but it all comes together on this track with a great lonesome steel guitar melody doubled by the strings.

I need to check out “New Space Music.”

Naive Teen Idol, Thursday, 26 March 2020 03:16 (four months ago) link

Reflection is amazing, one of my absolute favorites of his

brimstead, Thursday, 26 March 2020 03:50 (four months ago) link

Forget what the Walkabouts were doing on Sub Pop in 1991, how the heck did Eno come to work with them?

― Josh in Chicago, Wednesday, March 25, 2020 7:46 PM (one hour ago)


Presumably most of your guest-spots and co-writing stems purely from a desire to get together with friends and see what happens. Is this generally how it works? How did Brian Eno and Natalie Merchant wind up on Scavenger for instance?

I have often been asked 'why don't you work with this person, or why don't you write songs with that guy?' and to be honest that sort of speculation has never led to any of the collaborations we have been involved with. Usually you just meet someone, you like the jokes they tell when they drink, and then you end up working with them at some point in the studio. I mean you can go down the list: The Tindersticks called us about touring, eventually we ended up meeting them in a bar; Mark Lanegan and Scott McCaughey and Gary Heffern and Terry Lee Hale and Ivan Kral or Warren Ellis from the Dirty Three we all knew from bars and clubs. Peter Buck was introduced to us by a mutual friend and his future wife, and she owns a bar! Brian Eno miraculously stopped by a studio where we working, we started drinking, and in a few hours he was fooling around on the keyboard and singing backup vocals. Natalie Merchant is about the only person we ever actually tracked down—she was a friend of Scavenger's producer Gary Smith—and frankly it is the only collaboration that we have done that I ever felt strange about. The producer simply wanted her name on the album, which is the worst possible reason to work with someone.

Jersey Al (Albert R. Broccoli), Thursday, 26 March 2020 04:18 (four months ago) link

Yeah, I'd heard that "Eno stopped by the studio" thing, and ... sure, but what a weird story. It looks like that album was recorded in Seattle and mixed in Connecticut. I wonder if someone else Eno was working with at the time was in one of those studios? Anyway, the song just happens to be a perfect fit, sounding like an outtake from "Another Green World" or something of that era.

Hmm, now that I think about it, it's possible Eno was on a ... lecture tour? Here's a review my dude Mark did of his appearance in Chicago in 1990.

Josh in Chicago, Thursday, 26 March 2020 14:09 (four months ago) link

Finding Shore is really good

Joey Corona (Euler), Thursday, 26 March 2020 14:12 (four months ago) link

BTW, I know this has been posted, too, but if anyone missed it, here's footage of Eno at work in 1973:

Josh in Chicago, Thursday, 26 March 2020 14:13 (four months ago) link

Eno and Cale "One Word" -- this whole record is great, and "Spinning Away" is the Eno classic here, but this is probably the best fusion of the two's sensibilities -- they harmonize brilliantly together, the lyrics are great, the call and response chorus is killer and the "miles and miles away" climax

so otm

TikTok to the (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Thursday, 26 March 2020 14:16 (four months ago) link

Remember this oil by Augustus John?
These are the ones I found in Rome
Very few things I keep for long
When does your plane leave for Cologne?

is one of my favourite lyrics by anyone ever

felt jute gyte delete later (wins), Thursday, 26 March 2020 14:19 (four months ago) link

"Lilac" on High Life is another high point along the same lines

those Eno/Hyde records are interesting b/c Hyde has done very little as a solo artist. I don't hear any Underworld at all in those albums.

frogbs, Thursday, 26 March 2020 14:24 (four months ago) link

Eno is an underrated lyricist, possibly because so much of his stuff is surreal and/or seemingly random. But then you hit something like "Spider & I" and it's just so concise and evocative:

Spider and i sit watching the sky
On a world without sound
We knit a web to catch one tiny fly
For our world without sound
We sleep in the mornings
We dream of a ship that sails away
A thousand miles away.

Josh in Chicago, Thursday, 26 March 2020 14:27 (four months ago) link

always loved this part of "Kings Lead Hat"

Splish splash I was raking in the cash
the biology of purpose keeps my nose above the surface BUHHHHHH

frogbs, Thursday, 26 March 2020 14:55 (four months ago) link

Agreed – his lyrics on Before and After Science are an esp. good juxtaposition of the surreal and evocative.

Reflection is amazing, one of my absolute favorites of his

I like it ... tho it hasn’t yet really locked in with me. I feel like it’s something I need to spend more time closely listening to.

Finding Shore is really good

Yes. It’s been a productive few years for Eno doing his treatment of pianist things again – this time manipulating MIDI instead of just audio recordings.

since 2000, my favorite things have been the Eno/Schwalm 2001 shows,

I just found one of these shows on Mixcloud:ãn-del-cuervo-lanzarote-festival-13-10-2001/

Naive Teen Idol, Thursday, 26 March 2020 15:38 (four months ago) link

one of my favorite ever lyricists ~

but if you study the logistics and heuristics of the mystics
you will find that their minds rarely move in a line
so it's much more realistic to abandon such ballistics
and resign to be trapped on a leaf in the vine


reggie (qualmsley), Thursday, 26 March 2020 15:39 (four months ago) link

Even gibberish like "Miss Shapiro:"

All the peasants in the squares
At their tables and their chairs
Set to salvage certain numbers
From the wonder of the tundra
And the muses in the gloom
Counting needles in their rooms
On the carpet in the corner
In a kind of secret slumber
While the in formation rain
Slashed the dirty window pane to the square.

Smoky broads and smoky windows in the square
Come come charmer come on over for the day
Disappearing cocoa forests flash and die
Fortunes crumble all demolished in the bay.

Over forty pointed people
In the perfect pointed steeple
Looked to see the lucky number
Yes the wonder of the tundra
Had come up to fame and fortune
Singing his tune, my tune, your tune
Wooing daughters of the gifted
On the carpets of the courtrooms
While the tickets were expensive
The show was quite relentless in the square.

Smoky broads and smoky windows in the square
Come come charmer come on over for the day
Disappearing cocoa forests flash and die
Fortunes crumble all demolished in the bay

Dalai llama lama puss puss
Stella marls missa nobis
Miss a dinner Miss Shapiro
Shampoos pot-pot pinkies pampered
Movement hampered like at christmas
Ha-ha isn't life a circus
Round in circles like the archers
Always stiff or always starchy
Yes it's happening and it's fattening
And it's all that we can get into the show.

Smoky broads and smoky windows in the square
Come come charmer come on over for the day
Disappearing cocoa forests flash and die
Fortunes crumble all demolished in the bay

Josh in Chicago, Thursday, 26 March 2020 15:55 (four months ago) link

"Lilac" on High Life is another high point along the same lines

those Eno/Hyde records are interesting b/c Hyde has done very little as a solo artist. I don't hear any Underworld at all in those albums.

― frogbs, Thursday, March 26, 2020 bookmarkflaglink

"Lilac" in particular is the high point of both Eno/Hyde albums, in my opinion. That might be my favorite Eno thing of the last 20 years.

Trying to get into this new Eno/Eno album. Weirdly I like it on headphones at night, but when I listen to it during the day while working, it feels too retro, kinda hokey to me.

sctttnnnt (pgwp), Thursday, 26 March 2020 19:20 (four months ago) link

I think I would not have liked it even ten years ago; Eno’s taste for midi glock, celeste & string synths can get treacly for me. Could not do that new Apollo album, and there are definitely a few tracks on this I left off the playlist, but it saves the best for the end

I’ve probably just made the decision to like it, but it has something to do with the fact that Eno’s midi tastes are now recognizably his as a person, that when he applies them to what are unmistakably his brother’s piano lines, which I find sentimental but not manipulative, then it becomes a record that only these two could have made. having Apollo / Voices / MFF3 in the bloodstream since they came out helps. Or maybe my nervous system is just shredded this week and music like this and Mozart are all I can take, even most Monteverdi is too aggressive for me right now

Milton Parker, Thursday, 26 March 2020 19:44 (four months ago) link

There's no question this record hits the spot right now (I would recommend you give the second disc of Apollo another shot however -- if you aren't comparing it to APOLLO, it's actually quite good on its own terms).

I think a big piece of why the new record works is that Brian's MIDI tastes have also gotten more processed and shaded as he's moved from hardware to softsynths. Thinking back to Nerve Net's "Pierre in Mist," where he dinks around on an M1 ROMpler sax sound ... or the entire sound palette on The Drop 5 years later ... those records sound like what they were: MIDI presets he treated with this Eventide H3000 signal processor. No matter how many swirling pitch-shifted reverb tails he would smother them in, it was still a MIDI conga, or tamborine or a piano.

The sounds he uses today are all generated from and processed in his computer -- and while that's not everyone's cup of tea, for Eno the result is far more integrated. A track like "Wintergreen" starts off sounding like an electric piano but then shades of an acoustic piano sound joins in a few minutes in and ... well, it sounds great. (I've never been convinced, FWIW, that he was the master of the DX-7 we're told he was ... most of his sound design for that is bell sounds which are by far the easiest sounds to create).

I would also agree that Roger's melodic sensibility (like Tom Rogerson's or Harold Budd's for that matter) really jibes nicely with these sounds. None of those records are mawkish.

Naive Teen Idol, Thursday, 26 March 2020 20:34 (four months ago) link

those are two good posts, i welcome more eno(s) process talk. i have nothing to contribute since i've been using the new record as attempted toddler-lulling music (without much success) in these trying times

adam, Friday, 27 March 2020 14:36 (four months ago) link

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 27 March 2020 14:38 (four months ago) link

Haven't dug into the making of this one yet, but the Tom Rogerson album was pretty High Concept.

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 27 March 2020 14:41 (four months ago) link

(xp) I've got one of those albums, maybe I should listen to it myself.

Bridge Over Thorley Waters (Tom D.), Friday, 27 March 2020 14:41 (four months ago) link

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