Brian Eno

Eno Box I: Instrumentals

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Ever the iconoclast, if there is one thing that Brian Eno has done with any degree of consistency throughout his varied career, it is presenting his art in an array of perpetually "out of the box" forums. All that changed -- in a manner of speaking -- with the release of two companion multi-disc compilations. Eno Box I: Instrumentals (1994) condenses his wordless creations, while Eno Box II: Vocals (1993) does the same for the rest of his major works on a similarly sized volume. Interestingly -- and in his typically contrary fashion -- this initial installment was actually issued last. Each of Eno Box I: Instrumentals' three CDs respectively concentrates on a specific facet of the artist's copious back catalog. Disc one takes a more or less chronological approach to instrumental selections from the Eno albums Another Green World (1975) and Before and After Science (1977) prior to focusing on his movie music. "Dover Beach" -- his contribution to the Derek Jarman-directed masterpiece Jubilee (1978) -- is then followed by titles from the limited-edition vinyl promotional Directors' Edition of Music for Films (1976), the publicly released Music for Films (1978), and Music for Films, Vol. 2 (1983), concluding with several sides from Music for Films, Vol. 3 (1988). Disc two picks right up where the first left off, garnering four additional Music for Films, Vol. 3 entries prior to providing an overview to Eno's collaborations with notables such as David Bowie, Jon Hassell, Harold Budd, Daniel Lanois, Roger Eno, and Robert Fripp. Disc three then offers samplings from Music for Airports (1978), The Shutov Assembly (1992), On Land (1982), Thursday Afternoon (1985), Discreet Music (1975), and Neroli (1993), several of which have been truncated for inclusion here. It is also worth mentioning that all the contents are encoded with exceptionally high-fidelity super-bit mapping. The physical box itself is an elaborate affair designed by Russell Mills, and the 30-page liner booklet contains text by U.K. rock critic Paul Morley and the usual discographical information that states the sources for each of the 54 entries.

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