Brian Eno drawn by Titanic for experimental new album
Experimental artist Brian Eno has announced a new album that focuses on unencumbered human voices as he explores the legacies of World War I and the Titanic.
The groundbreaking British electronic designer, known for his work with David Bowie, Roxy Music and Talking Heads, said that the album, "The Ship," would come out on April 29.
"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," he wrote on his website.
Eno, 67, said that his artistic starting point was his fascination with World War I, which erupted suddenly from a clash among empires that many Europeans thought would be quickly resolved.
"It followed immediately after the sinking of the Titanic, which to me is its analogue," he said of the 1912 demise in the Atlantic Ocean of the giant passenger liner.
"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," he wrote.
Eno remains a frequent collaborator of both major and small acts, but "The Ship" is his first album on his own since 2012's "Lux," a work of ambient sounds designed to be set to art installations which he premiered in a terminal of Tokyo's Haneda airport.
"The Ship" closes with Eno's cover of The Velvet Underground's "I'm Set Free," on which the late Lou Reed sings, "I'm set free / I'm set free to find a new illusion."
"The Ship" comes out on the heels of another major passing in the music world -- the death of Bowie, who did not publicly disclose his battle with cancer.
Eno, who said that Bowie sent him an email in coded language days before his death, worked with the rocker on his celebrated Berlin trilogy of albums in the late 1970s that experimented with electronica.
© 2016 AFP