Brian Eno

A lot of ambient music sounds like the stuff you hear in the changing rooms of your favourite spa. Former Roxy Music member Brian Eno, who is leading this project with his brother Roger and producer Daniel Lanois, is known as the father of ambient music. He has carved out a career by elevating this sub-genre to a higher emotional realm and combining it with film scoring techniques. This latest (revisited) project, entitled Apollo: Atmospheres and Soundtracks, is a perfect example of that ethos. Set to the iconic footage of man’s trip to the moon, the piece combines the emotional response to this era-defining human accomplishment with the slightly more technical aspect of scoring to picture. The music is amorphous at the very start, with the listener struggling to latch on to anything concrete, but slowly chords form and melody lines emerge like shards of sunlight from behind the moon. These elements – ethereal layers of synths, voices and low drones – remain, hypnotic and yearning, until the conclusion. You can’t whistle the main tune after the first few listens, but an emotional and sub-conscious connection has been made. That is ambient music’s USP if you will. And of course, the music locks perfectly to the footage. A marriage made, literally, in heaven.

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