INTERVIEWS, REVIEWS & RELATED ARTICLES
The Argus MAY 11, 2010 - by Terry Walker
THIS IS PURE SCENIUS
Brighton Dome Concert Hall, May 9
Eno was directing seven other musicians, including The Necks and Karl Hyde (Underworld), in lengthy improvisations that immersed the audience in slowly changing textures and repetitious fragments in which time became elusive.
Tongue-in-cheek, he introduced the second of the evening's three performances as a mid-twenty-first century reconstruction of early twenty-first century music, musing about "ambient-thrash-lounge". That pretty well summed up the band's output, which fell somewhere between the free-form episodes in early Pink Floyd or King Crimson, and the digital electronica of the past twenty years.
Delivered with an intensity that combined nervous energy and studious concentration, the music maintained momentum and interest but seemed to constantly frustrate.
It stubbornly refused to develop melodically or harmonically, instead creating an over-busy and sometimes harsh soundworld, too uniform in its reliance on echoes and decaying loops. But there were some inventive moments particularly from the bass and piano, and a yearning for some softer, clearer sonorities was met in a long dreamy section where textures thinned out leaving just two pianos echoing delicate slow and richly beautiful sustained chords.
Overall, ninety minutes of real improvisation, unusual outside of a jazz context, offered a fascinating and engaging glimpse into Eno's current musical interests.