Brian Eno, Imaginary Landscapes

Oldie but a goodie, streaming in full over on Youtube. Def recommended for those who haven’t seen it, and worth revisiting for those who have.

  1. “Though he admits to being a composer, arranger, song writer, singer, record producer, artist and video and film maker, Brian Eno appropriately and simply describes himself as a synthesist.”

  2. “At the moment I feel I’m carrying out my motto, which is go to an extreme and then retreat to a more useful position. Because, a lot of the emphasis of what’s called artistic behavior is to go to an extreme, find an extreme position and to defend it and occupy it. But I think, well, those aren’t necessarily the most interesting places to be. It’s interesting that somebody has been there, and you want to know about what they saw there and you want to be able to find out about it. But you might not want to be there yourself.

    But I think, well, those aren’t necessarily the most interesting places to be. It’s interesting that somebody has been there, and you want to know about what they saw there and you want to be able to find out about it. But you might not want to be there yourself.

    It’s a bit like living at the north pole. To know that the north pole exists is useful and enriching, but personally, I’d prefer to be here. And it’s a bit like that with music. I want to know about all it’s boundary conditions, and they exert a kind of influence on what you do, because they allow certain things to be possible.”

  3. “I’ve never really made music that interests me from a purely intuitive position. It’s always been connected in some big theoretical position that I felt was important at the time. And as far as I’m concerned, the music doesn’t have to exhibit any of that. It doesn’t have to show it. Like when you’re listening you don’t have to be aware of that, but the important thing about theoretical positions is that they lead you to decisions that you wouldn’t have taken other wise. Or you wouldn’t have committed.”

  4. “What you need are fewer possibilities that are more interesting. It’s not more options that you want, it’s more useful options. This thing has infinite options, and you just don’t need them. For playing, it’d be just as good to have six or twelve really fantastically good useful sounds.”

  5. “Soon as you hear two instruments play a melody together, you know there’s a conspiracy.”

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I come back to this post all the time. One of the first here, but so very good.

In 2023 I feel like I’d like to go to an extreme position and then retreat to a more useful one.

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