Brian Peter George Saint Jean le Baptiste de la Salle Eno, or simply Brian Eno, is hailed as the instrumental figure in the sculpting of ambient music. He was, afterall, the one who coined the term for low-volume, minimalistic music designed to alter one's perception of the environment. This came about from months of lying in a hospital bed with nothing but very quiet 18th century music that he was unable to turn up. He then realized that music could be in a form so as to provoke many levels of listening attention, without being stricken to just one. As a result, he set out to make just that and created Ambient 1: Music for Airports
This album consists of just four tracks, each one as simplistic as it is beautiful. Each one consists of a few different synth loops intertwining, and in some cases, has some gentle piano on top of it. The songs are labeled in accordance to the order they were on the original vinyl release. 1/1
is the first song on the first side, and is probably the best of the album. One of the two with piano, this one gently lulls along with sparsely populated notes and a bit of backing synth. 2/1
is the second song of the first side, and consists purely of synthesized voice loops interacting with one another. A great song to space out to, and stays interesting enough (for ambience that is) throughout. 1/2
is like a combination of the previous two songs. It's got the sparse, delicate piano and the soothing voices which flit and prance about during the length of the piece. 2/2
is an exercise in pure synth work with some things that sound almost like a tuba.
That's about all I can say to describe the songs. They're very minimalistic and don't require concentration to enjoy. In fact, they were designed to be background music and eliminate the dread and misery of an airport terminal. If you listen to this and expect something extraordinary, you'll probably be disappointed. While this is a great album, it's a passively great album. If you think too hard or pay too much attention to things, you may get bored and give up. What Eno does here is mold a soundscape for you and then allow you to do whatever you wish with it. Read a book, take a long bubble bath, or even both. You could even put it on as you try to sleep. Whatever activity you have for it, Music for Airports
will provide the perfect soundtrack. A must have for ambient fans, and a worthwhile listen for those who simply enjoy music. Just try not to doze off while you inhale the simple beauty.