My Life in the Bush of Ghosts Appreciation (

hemolhemol 2,578 Posts
edited March 2008 in Strut Central
1981. This is a great album. Sonically it's a pretty diverse listen, and as can be expected of a collaboration of these dudes (and the cloud of talent that follws them in such endeavors) it's well-crafted. It's a milestone in the practice of sampling, and a great contribution to the ill-titled 'world fusion' genre. Bomb Squad cites this album as a huge influence, as I'm sure many other people do. For those who don't know, this album was highly influenced by Eno's collaborations/dialogue with trumpeter Jon Hassell (who played with LaMonte Young, and Terry Riley)*. Previous to this album Eno and Hassell had collaborated on Fourth World Possible Musics. The album used a lot of non-euro drumming, which was a first for Eno. Clearly there were others doing this, and doing it earlier in time, so they weren't the originators, but they were definitely innovators. Hassell had been in contact with Eno about his next album Dream Theory in Malaya (which happens to be a low tempo bliss out, think Affenstunde more organized and polished with Hassell's signature trumpet sounds). Hassell had told Eno that he was using lots of African drumming on the album, and mixing in vocal recordings. When My Life... came out Hassell was pissed. Another important facet of the album is its use of vocal samples. instead of getting people in the studio to sing on tracks they hijacked recordings from Middle Eastern radio and televsion broadcasts, as well as some American recordings. Again, this was not the first time that anyone did such a thing (as far as I know Holger Czukay's track Boat Woman Song from Canaxis is the first), but decontextualizing a recording, and reappropriating it into a composition is some pretty raw stuff.Really though, the albums are entirely different. My Life... has a very metered and strongly sequenced feel, whereas Dream Theory... draws from a more ambient motif. Meanwhile, neither of the two were really blazing new groundm they were just taking ideas from the extremes of the avant garde and making them more easily digestable.This track came on in shuffle mode this morning. The Carrier.*Certainly a unique case in the history of Euro-american brass techniques, Hassell had a distinct and well-tempered style for playing trumpet. He studied with the legendary vocalist Pandit Pran Nath--who also taught Riley, and Young. Through his studies he figured out a much 'breathier' technique for playing, that allowed him to slide from note to note. His trumpeting in this style is usually an amalgam of overdubs with sufficiaent reverb that makes for a truly unique sound.

  Comments


  • DocMcCoyDocMcCoy "Go and laugh in your own country!" 5,921 Posts
    I was deep into Talking Heads when this came out. I thought the kind of "ethno-fusion" experiments they (meaning Byrne, Eno, Weymouth, Frantz and Harrison) were getting into on "Fear Of Music" and "Remain In Light" was terrific stuff, and those records as well as "My Life..." were a huge influence on the band I was in at the time. If I recall correctly, this album was scheduled for release before "Fear Of Music", but didn't actually come out until later because of an issue with a track called "Into The Spirit World". Byrne and Eno wanted to use the voice of a medium on the track, but she refused to grant approval. Although "Into The Spirit World" is credited on the sleeve of early pressings of the o.g., it doesn't actually appear on the album. Later pressings removed the credit entirely, although I'm sure I read that they'd restored it to the recent reissue. Anyway, it's a great album, and an enduring favourite of mine. "Jezebel Spirit" in particular was/is a certified post-punk club classic.

  • you should check out the african headcharge record, "my life in a hole in the ground".

    from on-u:

    Upon hearing the Eno album Adrian then read an interview with him where he talked of ???having a vision of a psychedelic Africa???. This fascinated Adrian and along with Bonjo I and some other musicians started some experimental recordings in an underground (literally) studio called Berry Street in Clerkenwell, London. These recordings resulted in ???My Life in a Hole in the Ground??? 1981/2.

    The title was poking fun at Eno???s title and us a the same time as we were sopending most of our lives in the studio beneath the city streets. We the named the studio band African Head Charge as it seemed to fit the concept inspired by Brian Eno.

  • bassiebassie 11,710 Posts
    Dervish Chant -

    Edit - Can't seem to get an image for the Songs of Praise LP to work...

  • white_teawhite_tea 3,262 Posts
    I ride. Listened to this record over the weekend. "Jezebel" is, indeed, the bees knees.

  • i've been working on a beat based off of regiment, I will post it when I bring it together.. great album, on the top of my list.

  • hemolhemol 2,578 Posts
    you should check out the african headcharge record, "my life in a hole in the ground".

    from on-u:

    Upon hearing the Eno album Adrian then read an interview with him where he talked of ???having a vision of a psychedelic Africa???. This fascinated Adrian and along with Bonjo I and some other musicians started some experimental recordings in an underground (literally) studio called Berry Street in Clerkenwell, London. These recordings resulted in ???My Life in a Hole in the Ground??? 1981/2.

    The title was poking fun at Eno???s title and us a the same time as we were sopending most of our lives in the studio beneath the city streets. We the named the studio band African Head Charge as it seemed to fit the concept inspired by Brian Eno.

    Thanks for the heads up. Do you have any clips?

  • DJ_WubWubDJ_WubWub 874 Posts
    An almost flawless lp all killer no filler

    Jezebel spirit still freaks me as apparently it is a real exorcism and listening to it while heavily stoned has tripped me out before. Still love the track though.

    My favorite track is Help me Somebody and is kinda danceable

  • This one opened my eyes and ears bigtime. And cosign on other talking heads lps. That's what I grew up on. Never heard an eno record that I liked as much, what should I check for?


  • hemolhemol 2,578 Posts





    CaptainP you should check out fourth World and Dream Theory in Malaya. Both should be under $15. They are less pop-influenced, and structured, and much more about texture and ether, but both really good albums. Eno had a much larger role in fourth World, in fact I'm not sure that he had any role in Dream Theory. Canaxis is also more along the lines of texture, and ether, but even less structured. It's also a good ten or twelve years prior. Holger Czukay is really a big dude when it comes to tape edits, and arrangements. I feel like that aspect of his skill really comes through on Canaxis.

    Dude has a bit of a bad rap around here, and my recollection of the album is not clear at all (can't speak to the quality of the tunes related), but maybe also check out Bill Laswell's Imaginary cuba. It's all concstructed from field recordings he made of musicians in Cuba.

  • DocMcCoyDocMcCoy "Go and laugh in your own country!" 5,921 Posts
    This interview with Bill Laswell is pretty interesting. He explains his motivation for that Miles project he did. Some of the other interviews on this page are worth checking too.b, 21b, 21a href="http://www.theartofmusicproduction.com/Bill_Laswell_interview.html" target="_blank"1http://www.theartofmusicproduction.com/Bill_Laswell_interview.html/a1

  • Possible Musics is really good too.
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