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Brian Eno quotes (49)

A part of me has become immortal, out of my control.
Brian Eno   Category:

Agressive music can only shock you once. Afterwards its impact declines. It's inevitable.
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As soon as I hear a sound, it always suggests a mood to me.
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At the beginning of the 20th century, the ambition of the great painters was to make paintings that were like music, which was then considered as the noblest art.
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Avant-garde music is sort of research music. You're glad someone's done it but you don't necessarily want to listen to it.
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Every collaboration helps you grow. With Bowie, it's different every time. I know how to create settings, unusual aural environments. That inspires him. He's very quick.
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For me it's always contingent on getting a sound-the sound always suggests what kind of melody it should be. So it's always sound first and then the line afterwards.
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For the world to be interesting, you have to be manipulating it all the time.
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I always use the same guitar; I got this guitar years and years ago for nine pounds. It's still got the same strings on it.
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I don't live in the past at all; I'm always wanting to do something new. I make a point of constantly trying to forget and get things out of my mind.
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I enjoy working with complicated equipment. A lot of my things started just with a rhythm box, but I feed it through so many things that what comes out sounds very complex and rich.
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I felt extremely uncomfortable as the focal point, in the spotlight. I really like the behind the scenes role, because all my freedom is there.
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I had a lot of trouble with engineers, because their whole background is learning from a functional point of view, and then learning how to perform that function.
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I had wanted a tape recorder since I was tiny. I thought it was a magic thing. I never got one until just before I went to art school.
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I hate the rock music tradition. I can't bear it!
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I have a definite talent for convincing people to try something new. I am a good salesman. When I'm on form, I can sell anything.
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I have lived in countries that were coming out of conflict: Ireland, South Africa, the Czech republic. People there are overflowing with energy.
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I often work by avoidance.
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I see TV as a picture medium rather than a narrative medium.
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I take sounds and change them into words.
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I think generally playing live is a crap idea. So much of stage work is the presentation of personality, and I've never been interested in that.
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I thought it was magic to be able to catch something identically on tape and then be able to play around with it, run it backwards; I thought that was great for years.
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I wanted to get rid of the element that had been considered essential in pop music: the voice.
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I'm not interested in possible complexities. I regard song structure as a graph paper.
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I'm very good with technology, I always have been, and with machines in general. They seem not threatening like other people find them, but a source of fun and amusement.
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I've discovered this new electronic technique that creates new speech out of stuff that's already there.
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If I had a stock of fabulous sounds I would just always use them. I wouldn't bother to find new ones.
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If you want to make someone feel emotion, you have to make them let go. Listening to something is an act of surrender.
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If you watch any good player, they're using different parts of their body and working with instruments that respond to those movements. They're moving in many dimensions at once.
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If you're in a forest, the quality of the echo is very strange because echoes back off so many surfaces of all those trees that you get this strange, itchy ricochet effect.
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In the 1960s, people were trying to get away from the pop song format. Tracks were getting longer, or much, much shorter.
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It's not the destination that matters. It's the change of scene.
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Most of those melodies are me trying to find out what notes fit, and then hitting ones that don't fit in a very interesting way.
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Music in itself carries a whole set of messages which are very, very rich and complex, and the words either serve to exclude certain ones or point up certain others.
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Musicians are there in front of you, and the spectators sense their tension, which is not the case when you're listening to a record. Your attention is more relaxed. The emotional aspect is more important in live music.
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My guitar only has five strings 'cause the top one broke and I decided not to put it back on: when I play chords I only play bar chords, and the top one always used to cut me there.
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My lyrics are generated by various peculiar processes. Very random and similar to automatic writing.
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Nearly all the things I do that are of any merit at all start off just being good fun, and I think I'm sort of building up to doing something else quite soon.
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One of the interesting things about having little musical knowledge is that you generate surprising results sometimes; you move to places you wouldn't if you knew better.
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People assume that the meaning of a song is vested in the lyrics. To me, that has never been the case. There are very few songs that I can think of where I remember the words.
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Robert Fripp and I will be recording another LP very soon. It should be even more monotonous than the first one!
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Set up a situation that presents you with something slightly beyond your reach.
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The basis of computer work is predicated on the idea that only the brain makes decisions and only the index finger does the work.
Brian Eno   Category: Computers

The lyrics are constructed as empirically as the music. I don't set out to say anything very important.
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The philosophical idea that there are no more distances, that we are all just one world, that we are all brothers, is such a drag! I like differences.
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The reason I don't tour is that I don't know how to front a band. What would I do? I can't really play anything well enough to deal with that situation.
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We are increasingly likely to find ourselves in places with background music. No composers have thought to write for these modern spaces, which represent 30% of our musical experience.
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When I started making my own records, I had this idea of drowning out the singer and putting the rest in the foreground. It was the background that interested me.
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When I went back to England after a year away, the country seemed stuck, dozing in a fairy tale, stifled by the weight of tradition.
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