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Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Brian Eno - "Here Come The Warm Jets" Vinyl LP


Brian Eno - Here Come The Warm Jets
Vinyl LP, Album, U.S., 1974
Island Records

I was deeply shocked when I read in Rolling Stone Magazine that Eno left Roxy Music.  The most shocking part to me was Rolling Stone even acknowledging Roxy Music and Eno.  For sure i thought that they didn’t know the band.  At the time, only in the U.K. and perhaps Europe was there media coverage on Bryan Ferry and Company.  The second shock was Eno leaving Roxy Music.  How can that be?  I wasn’t worried about Roxy Music, but I was worried about Eno.  So in 1974 it was a duty for me to purchase his first (and perhaps last at the time) Here Come The Warm Jets.   Well, odd enough, I wasn’t prepared for the sound that came off the vinyl into my ears.  Sonically, I was totally sold.   The first cut off the album “Needles In The Camel’s Eye”  sounded to me like something out of The Velvet Underground’s second album White Light White Heat.  Just a mono sound of grinding guitars with his beautiful vocal fighting against the noise.  I loved it. I still love it.  In fact I love this whole album. 

The first Roxy album prepared me for the sound, and Eno continued using that mixture of sparse electronics and bleeps with distant surf guitar and strong melody.  Also the album is so beautifully planned out - there is not a bad or weak cut on it.  Each song in a sense introduces the next, and it strikes me now that this is a record can only be made in 1974.  Glam was slowly disappearing at the time, and here Eno was introducing a new sound that was glam-like, but yet, something else.  Maybe a hybrid of John Cage with a glam leaning.  I don’t know, all I know is this album is important the way Sgt. Pepper is important to the culture.  

And the one major influence I think is John Cale era Velvets.  Even the song title has a Velvets feel to it.  “Cindy Tells Me,” “Blank Frank,” “Dead Finks Don’t Talk” and so forth.  More New York than West London.   Nevertheless the beauty of “Some Of Them Are Old” and how it gently joins in the last song “Here Come The Warm Jets” is simply a wonderful series of moments.   Oh, and the cover is great as well.