Thursday, August 4, 2011

Words between the Music

Right, an evening free to catch up on all manner of DVDs, CDs and bloke-ish things, so set to with a couple of newly released Eno artefacts: a DVD, The Man who Fell to Earth 1971-77 and a new CD, Drums between the Bells, with Rick Holland.

The documentary is great and, at over two and half hours long, very thorough. There wasn't a whole lot that I didn't know before, but it's an enjoyable reminder of how much Eno did from Roxy Music to Before & After Science.

Wasn't sure what to expect from the new album. The previous, Small Craft on a Milk Sea, was merely OK. But actually Drums... is I think much better: 15 tracks of music by Eno and words by poet Rick Holland. The pair of them speak on a few tracks but there are seven other, mainly female, voices also contributing. Nice range of rhythmic to floating, electronic to strings. The words themselves, well... some of it's very obscure, not that interesting if you just read them in the liner notes, but when spoken (and  I think in one case, sung), mostly very slowly, often heavily treated but always clear, and in the context of varied, sensitively tailored musical settings, they have a surprisingly thrilling effect.

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