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U2 – The Joshua Tree (1987)

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Exemplary logo by Sarca @ caughtmegaming

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[Album 505B/1001]

Yesterday, I looked at The Joshua Tree‘s formidable opening three tracks.

Today, the remaining eight.

And to continue the Texas Hold ‘Em Poker comparison, among these eight tracks, are there diamonds left to be found?

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Overall, how was The Joshua Tree poker hand?

Well, given some pre-existing notions about what they were dealing with, some participants may have folded (both the hand & the LP gatefold) immediately if not sooner.

But those who stuck around, to see how the cards/LP played out, will likely be glad they did.

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Verbalize the Positive

I like how Jordan @ Canadiancinephile always uses terrific language & phrasing in his reviews. I also think the hearts & diamonds ratings here were inspired by his Maple Leaf rating system, cheers!

U2 – The Joshua Tree (1987)

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Exemplary logo by Sarca @ caughtmegaming

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[Album 505A/1001]

It would be misleading to say that how you feel about The Joshua Tree boils down to how you feel about Where The Streets Have No Name/I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For/With or Without You.

However, it would be equally misrepresentative to ignore the gargantuan shadow that the aforementioned opening trio casts over the rest of the record.

Therefore, I’ll divide the record into two posts.

Today’s will cover the opening trio, tomorrow’s will explore the remaining eight tracks.

And just for fun, I’ll emphasize this 3-8 track split by comparing it to one of the worst possible starting Texas Hold ‘Em Poker Hands: the 3-8 (offsuit).

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Given the strength of tracks 1 & 3 especially, it’s not surprising that these opening tracks are the ones that tend to jump to mind when thinking about The Joshua Tree.

But what of the remaining 8 tracks?

Any hidden gems to be found?

[To be concluded]

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Verbalize the Positive

I appreciate that Jay @ Assholes Watching Movies is always entertaining to read, whether the movie being reviewed should be watched ASAP or should be avoided at all costs!

Artist of the Week: Quiz #2

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Awesome Artist of the Week logo by Sarca @ caughtmegaming

Artists of the Week (so far): Brian Eno

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It’s time for the second edition of the Artist of the Week Quiz!

Last week’s Artist? Brian Eno.

The results of week 1 are listed on the right.

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This week’s Artist? I thought you’d never ask!

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Quiz Rules/Format
(feel free to skip to the quiz if you know the rules already)

Your Task: Name the mystery Artist, ideally with as few clues as possible.

Correctly guess the artist on the first clue? 500 points.

After scrolling down to the second clue? 400 points.

Still don’t know after the fifth clue? 0 points, but a crisp high-five for participating.

I’ll use google translate to put the correct answer at the bottom in Arabic (if you read Arabic, that’s fantastic, but no cheating by reading ahead!) and you can translate it back to the language of your choice to confirm your answer.

In the comments, please enter your POINTS earned (not the artist name) and I’ll keep track of the running totals in a spreadsheet.

In addition to eternal bragging rights, the winner at the end of the year may even get something as prestigious as a digital certificate.

Here goes!

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Artist of the Week #2
Record POINTS Earned (Not Artist Name) in the comments
(scroll down for additional clues)

For:

500 points…………………Formed in Ireland in 1976

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400 points………………..Lead singer’s name is Paul David Hewson.

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300 points…………………Have released 13 studio albums.

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200 points………………….Have a song named One (admittedly though, that doesn’t really narrow it down).

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100 points………………..The band name is two characters: one letter, one number.

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Answer: أنت أيضا
(Please post your points earned in the comments section)

Thanks for playing!

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Verbalize the Positive

I appreciate that Danica @ Living a Beautiful Life always develops very interesting characters in her short stories. Even more impressive, she manages to set these scenes and introduce us to these people a very small amount of words!

Brian Eno – Before and After Science (1977)

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Awesome Artist of the Week logo by Sarca @caughtmegaming

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[Album 504/1001]

Do you remember learning about Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs?

A quick Maslow refresher:

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According to Maslow, the hierarchy indicates the order in which human needs must be addressed.

One cannot climb the pyramid until the needs of the previous stage are met.

For example, unless you’ve got food/shelter/water covered, you cannot move from Physiological to Safety.

Meaning the pyramid pinnacle of self-actualization can only be attained once the other four stages have all been successfully completed.

I suppose this is all a bit more social science than science; in any event, this hierarchy has helped me to understand Brian Eno, most recently, his album Before and After Science.

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According to this inspired-by/flagrantly-lifted-from-Maslow theory, the hierarchy indicates the order in which Brian Eno enjoyment can eventually be attained.

One (presumably) cannot climb the pyramid until the listener reactions of the previous stage have been experienced.

1. Bemusement

For example, purely hypothetically of course, upon leafing through a copy of “The 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die” in, let’s say, 2011 & seeing the relatively unfamiliar name “Brian Eno” appear in the index as often (or more) than say The Beatles/Rolling Stones/Bob Dylan/David Bowie…, such new-to-Eno listeners would surely begin their Brian Eno journey in a state of bemusement.

Bemused like John McLane & Karl from Die Hard, when Hans Gruber demands the release of “the 9 members of The Asian Dawn.”

Hans Gruber: “the 9 members of The Asian Dawn” “The 9+ appearances by Brian Eno”
John McLane: “What the fuck?” “The who in the what now?”
Karl: (bemused, mouthing “Asian Dawn?” “Brian Eno?”)
Hans: (wincing, somewhat) “I read about them him in Time Magazine The 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die”

*scene*

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2. Ranting

For the most part in this project, I’ve adhered to my goal of focusing on the albums that ARE on the list and NOT the ones that are glaringly absent.

Alas, my goal adherence slipped when I reviewed Here Come the Warm Jets.

This (This!) is on the 1001, and not ______, and _______, and _________?!

I say this Brian Eno business is no longer bemusing/amusing/confusing, it’s an outrage!

Although I’m not proud of this hierarchy stage, apparently it was developmentally appropriate in my growth, on my path to eventual Eno Enjoyment…

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3. Acknowledgement of Eno Creativity

You know what? This guy’s done some pretty interesting work as a Producer.

Oh, and he wrote an album of ambient music, specifically designed to be “as ignorable as it is interesting?”

Creativity acknowledged.

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4. Respect for Eno Innovation

Wow, Another Green World sounds totally different from the other Eno albums I’ve heard. He keeps pursuing new sounds, I admire that.

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5. Eno Enjoyment

Wait a second. I’m listening to Before and After Science well beyond the requisite listens. I’m 220px-beforeandaftersciencesinging along with the chatty lyrics in Backwater? I’m specifically looking forward to the gentle sounds in By This River?

Could it be I’m no longer merely appreciating Brian Eno?

I’m actually enjoying this!

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For those of you who hit stage 5 Eno Enjoyment many moons ago, it’s nice to finally join you.

For those reading along, finding yourselves in stage 1, or somewhere along the way: Eno Enjoyment is a journey, but it’s a journey worth taking.

Or at least, it’s a hierarchy worth climbing.

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Verbalize the Positive

I appreciate that Saintsboro is sharing the journey of writing his debut novel. As a stats enthusiast, I also like that he measures both word counts & frustration levels!

Top 5 Musical “Brian”s

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Awesome Artist of the Week logo by Sarca @caughtmegaming

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With the Artist of the Week Series, I’m hoping to do at least a Top 5 with each Artist.

With Eno, is he the best musical Brian?

He’s up there at least!

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5. Brian Johnson
Was fortunate to see him twice with Acca Dacca!

 

4. Brian Bell (=w=eezer)
Fine guitarist, underrated backup singer.

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3. Brian Eno
Would not have been #3 at the start of this project.

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2. Brian Wilson
Inspired the best “Brian” tribute song (Barenaked Ladies, Brian Wilson)

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1. Brian May
Rock Music, it’s not Rocket Science. But it’s sometimes performed by Rocket Scientists! How many lead guitarists have a PhD in Astrophysics? Or write out-of-this-world songs, like ’39, about time dilation?

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Verbalize the Positive

I appreciate that James @ Keepsmealive prepares in-depth concert reviews. He’s seen a staggering number of bands and after reading his reviews, several of these bands have been added to my ‘to-see’ list!

Brian Eno – Another Green World (1975)

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Awesome Artist of the Week logo by Sarca @caughtmegaming

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[Album 503/1001]

I’d like to propose a new Brian Eno theory: He’s simply in another world when it comes to album enjoyment.

Though the theory may be lacking in research and reek of narrative convenience, there are graphs!

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Best radio song of the last few years? I’d have a tough time choosing anything other than Uptown Funk.

There are many reasons why I believe this song works, as it even inspired another of my questionable theories (The Uptown Funk 70/30 Principle), but I anticipate that the song’s consistent appeal will be its greatest legacy.

For me, I’ve heard the tune dozens of times, and my enjoyment hasn’t wavered.

Which sadly can’t be said for every song…

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…like that novelty song that is cute/funny/catchy at first. Then gets a bit old. Then quickly becomes irritating, eventually leading to listener rage upon hearing the first few notes.

That song where the sound of styrofoam being rubbed together has since become preferable.

I’ll let you fill in the blank on the graph!

Finally, there’s Brian Eno…

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…and Brian Eno does not fit either of the first two graphs, not even a little bit.

Few would call Another Green World instantly accessible.

Fewer still would lump it in with __________ (whatever novelty song you chose above).

However, I imagine I’m not alone in thinking that this Eno record was OK at first, before gradually watching my enthusiasm grow with each subsequent listen.220px-another_green_world

Now some features, like the Robert Fripp “restrained lead guitar” (incidentally, what an instrument credit!) on I’ll Come Running, were immediately appealing.

But it’s those details I missed on the first run through, the layers that slowly started to reveal themselves, that made me look forward to the next immersion in Another Green World.

I’m currently on about my 5th listen and it feels like there still much to be discovered.

If I give it a 6th spin, would the trend continue?

Eventually, mathematically, the graph would have to level off (unless Brian Eno is one of those star athletes implausibly capable of giving 110%).

But I don’t think my enjoyment as a listener would flatten out just yet.

And that’s probably a tell-tale sign of a durable record.

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Verbalize the Positive

I appreciate the many fine features that Rich @ Kamertunes has put together over the years, especially his compilation or catalogue series. I’m guessing Eno may be among those catalogue-worthy artists!

Brian Eno – Ambient 1: Music for Airports (1978)

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Awesome Artist of the Week logo by Sarca @caughtmegaming

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[Album 502/1001]

Would you rather:

a) Listen to Brian Eno
b) Get a massage
c) Feel like you’re waiting in an airport

If you had asked me a few years ago, I would probably have picked c), as I didn’t really get the appeal of either Eno (not having ever really explored) or massages (not having ever booked one).

But waiting in an airport meant coffee/crosswords/reading/vacation and I certainly got the appeal of those!

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In 2017, however, I’d likely pick the hidden option d).

As in, d), All of the above.

Why the change of heart?

Well,

a) I’m starting to appreciate (on my way to enjoying) Brian Eno. He recorded this album with the 220px-music_for_airportsmission to make a record that was “as ignorable as it was interesting.”

That’s actually the perfect description of Ambient 1: Music For Airports. It’s sparse, but it fills the space nicely. I forget it’s playing in the background, but it would be noticeable if it wasn’t.

Kudos Brian Eno, really neat idea, really nice execution. Mission accomplished.

b) What type of background music works well during a massage? Ignorable, yet interesting, sounds about right. A friend of mine is a massage therapist and plays Ambient 1: Music For Airports during her sessions. I’ve also finally had a massage and I now get their appeal.

c) I’m still a fan of the coffee/crosswords/reading/vacation that accompanies airport waiting.

d) So yes, please sign me up for all of the above: a Brian Eno-soundtracked massage, with a dash of that coffee/crosswords/reading/vacation feeling!

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Verbalize the Positive

I appreciate 2loud2oldmusic‘s Sunday Song series, especially this year’s installment that is being guest-hosted by his spouse.

It’s always nice to see people in the community using adjectives like ‘lovely’ when describing their partners, even nicer to see those ‘lovely’ partners guest-host!