Brian Eno

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Desert Island Selection

Brian Eno - Desert Island Selection ©1986 EG Records
1. Here He Comes
2. Everything Merges With The Night
3. I'll Come Running (to Ties Your Shoe)
4. On Some Faraway Beach
5. Spirits Drifiting
6. Back In Judy's Jungle
7. St. Elmo's Fire
8. No One Receiving
9. Julie With...
10. Taking Tiger Mountain
11. 1/1

Desert Island Selection, as the title suggests, is a compilation of some of Brian Eno's supposedly better moments onto one handy disc. For Eno initiates who are familiar with him mostly by name only and the fact that he's seemingly collaborated with every musician known to man, this might just be a fine place to check out his music without making excessive blind purchases. Though his experiments in ambience are relagated to second class status with but one inclusion ("1/1" from Music For Airports), Desert Island Selection gives an overview of his slightly leftfield take on 70's pop music. His music is generally well written and contains plenty of reasonably placid melodies, but to a degree lacks any real digestible oomph behind it. On my listens to this album, I find my interest waning fairly quickly as the CD progresses. It is pleasant, but non-demanding throughout. He should be credited for having a fairly all-inclusive array of instrumentation and good sense of arrangement as well as a unifying sound throughout. However, much of his music comes off as decent but ultimately bland and certainly not demanding of searching out the albums from which all these songs were culled. The aforementioned "1/1" is an exception, as the airy and ambient piano work is very interesting. Given my liking for some of his other ambient works I've heard on compiliations elsewhere, I do believe I have learned that my Eno tastes lie within his two albums with the Talking Heads and his ambient excursions. As for his pop career, hopefully it'll remain safely on Gilligan's Island.

Review by John Chedsey

Review date: 08/2000

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