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  • Brian Eno Announces New Album, "The Ship"

    Thu, 25 Feb 2016 11:54:54

    Brian Eno Announces New Album, "The Ship" -

    Brian Eno has announced that he will be releasing a new album, The Ship, on April 29th. The LP will be his first solo release since 2012's Lux. "According to Eno, the Titanic disaster inspired the album's 21-minute title track and its three-tiered suite "Fickle Sun," which finds Eno covering the Velvet Underground's "I'm Set Free." The album, described as a "musical novel," also features a poem read by actor Peter Serafinowicz. The Ship arrives April 29th," reports Rolling Stone.

    The album will also feature Brian Eno's voice for the first time in over a decade. The last time Eno sang on a solo LP was 2005's Another Day on Earth. The second and final piece of the album is a Velvet Underground cover, "The Ship concludes with Eno's take on the Lou Reed-penned "I'm Set Free," a Velvet Underground track that the producer has long credited with inspiring him as an art student in the late-Sixties," says Rolling Stone.

    Eno also released introductory notes to go along with the track list:

    Humankind seems to teeter between hubris and paranoia: the hubris of our ever-growing power contrasts with the paranoia that we're permanently and increasingly under threat. At the zenith we realise we have to come down again... we know that we have more than we deserve or can defend, so we become nervous. Somebody, something is going to take it all from us: that is the dread of the wealthy. Paranoia leads to defensiveness, and we all end up in the trenches facing each other across the mud.

    On a musical level, I wanted to make a record of songs that didn't rely on the normal underpinnings of rhythmic structure and chord progressions but which allowed voices to exist in their own space and time, like events in a landscape. I wanted to place sonic events in a free, open space.

    One of the starting points was my fascination with the First World War, that extraordinary trans-cultural madness that arose out of a clash of hubris between empires. It followed immediately after the sinking of the Titanic, which to me is its analogue. The Titanic was the Unsinkable Ship, the apex of human technical power, set to be Man's greatest triumph over nature. The First World War was the war of materiel, 'over by Christmas', set to be the triumph of Will and Steel over humanity. The catastrophic failure of each set the stage for a century of dramatic experiments with the relationships between humans and the worlds they make for themselves. I was thinking of those vast dun Belgian fields where the First World War was agonizingly ground out; and the vast deep ocean where the Titanic sank; and how little difference all that human hope and disappointment made to it. They persist and we pass in a cloud of chatter.

    Written in the late sixties, Lou Reed's song 'I'm Set Free' seems even more relevant now than it did then. Perhaps anybody who's read Yuval Noah Harari's 'Sapiens' will recognise the quiet irony of "I'm set free to find a new illusion"... and its implication that when we step out of our story we don't step into 'the truth' - whatever that might be - but into another story.

    This album is a succession of interleaved stories. Some of them I know, some of them I'm discovering now in the making of them.

    Wave. After. Wave. After. Wave.

    Check out the track list below:

    1. "The Ship"
    2. "Fickle Sun"
      (i) Fickle Sun
      (ii) The Hour Is Thin
      (iii) I'm Set Free

    For more on Brian Eno, check out:
    Artists Respond to David Bowie's Death

    —The ARTISTdirect Staff

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