Transience & Immersion: On Brian Eno's 'Music for Airports'

Episode 115 · February 2nd, 2022 · 1 hr 15 mins

About this Episode

Soft, soothing, and understated as a rule, ambient music may seem the least weird of all musical genres. Not so, say JF and Phil, who devote this episode to Brian Eno's Ambient 1: Music for Airports, the 1978 album in whose liner notes the term "ambient music" first appeared. In this conversation, your hosts explore the aesthetic, metaphysical, and political implications of a kind of music designed to interact with the listener -- and the listener's environment -- below the threshold of ordinary, directed awareness. Eno and Peter Schmidt's famous Oblique Strategies, a deck of cards designed to heighten and deepen creativity, lends divinatory support to the endeavor.

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Brian Eno, Ambient 1: Music for Airports
Gabriella Cardazzo, Duncan Ward, and Brian Eno, Imaginary Landscapes
Oblique Strategies Deck
Theodore Adorno, Introduction to the Sociology of Music
Marc Auge, Non-Places
Anahid Kassabian, “Ubiquitous Music”
Sigmund Freud, “On Transience”
Weird Studies, Episode 104 on Sgt. Pepper
Joris Karl Huysmans, A Rebours
Roger Moseley, Keys to Play