Brian Eno Music for Airports (DVD)

This DVD set has a high value for fans of ambient or new takes on classical music. This is due to the fact that Brian Eno’s (and Bang on a Can All-Stars) “Music for Airports” is present, while Frank Scheffer’s “In the Ocean” operates as the B-side to “Music for Airports”. Together, these pieces hover at about 105 minutes, allowing viewers to get deep into the heads of everyone associated with “Music for Airports”. Instead of going forth with a concert type of documentary that splices in interviews and discussions about the band with parts of the live performance, the divided nature of this DVD allows individuals to take the plunge with the music first and then get a roper explanation and debriefing about what one just heard.

“In the Ocean” has a little bit larger of a focus, and gives viewers some education about modern experimental musicians that aren’t Brian Eno. This list includes Louis Andriessen, Steve Riech, and goes into a little bit more detail about the Bang on a Can All-Stars (David Lang, Julia Wolfe, and Michael Gordon). The DVD is important because both the musical and documentary side of the disc showcase the past, present, and future of cutting-edge music. This linking of the three distinct time periods has been already explained for “In the Ocean”, but “Music for Airports” showcases the past (the album “Music for Airports” was originally released thirty years ago), the present (Brian Eno) and the future (the Bang on a Can) of experimental music.

The cheap price of the DVD (coming in at a smidge under $25) should make this DVD accessible to everyone; hopefully this package is what is necessary to get a whole generation of new listeners to the style, and that some of these listeners ultimately decide to create music of their own. Congratulations have to go out to Medici Arts for putting together such a tidy package.

Rating: 8.6/10

Brian Eno Music for Airports / 2009 Medici Arts / 107 Minutes / http://www.medici.tv

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