Brian Eno is MORE DARK THAN SHARK
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INTERVIEWS, REVIEWS & RELATED ARTICLES

Trouser Press MAY 1979 - by Steven Grant

ENO/MOEBIUS/ROEDELIUS: AFTER THE HEAT

...which, by any other name, is Cluster and Eno.

After The Heat is a step up from the combo's previous issue. The work is more even than on Cluster & Eno, though the album shows the bilateral tendencies of Eno's Before And After Science: side one is composed solely of neo-symphonic pieces, with synthesizer draped heavily over synthesizer, side two of lighter, more rockish (and more interesting) works, with Eno lending voice and lyrics to three tracks. The numbers are more complete than those on the earlier album, which tended to drift off into nothingness rather than end. Musically, After The Heat is more humanistic and less inclined toward the techno-obsession associated with both electronic music and Conny Plank, who engineered and co-produced the album. In abandoning the more muzaky aspects of German electro-rock in favor of a fuller sound, Cluster and Eno may be beginning to push electronic music toward becoming a functional genre, but while both Eno and Cluster fans will jump at After The Heat, it probably won't do much to convince skeptics.

One wonders why Brian Eno, quite an inventive little tyke in his own right, feels the constant need to team up with other musicians. For all the pleasant bits on After The Heat, it would be nicer to see something as inspired as any single song on Before And After Science (though the Eno-sung numbers sound like outtakes thereof). Cluster in their own right have never done work that stand up to their work with Eno, and even in cahoots with people like Robert Fripp and David Bowie, Eno never produces anything in collaboration as interesting as his solo efforts.


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