Untitled digital photograph, 2012

Untitled digital photograph, 2012

Untitled digital photograph, 2012

Untitled digital photograph, 2012

Untitled digital photograph, 2012

Air (for Nikki Light), 2012

1979’s Fear of Music was Talking Heads’ third LP, and their second with Brian Eno as co-producer. It came wrapped in a black cover with an embossed pattern reminiscent of checker plate metal flooring, designed by the band’s Jerry Harrison. There are a number of tracks with one word titles: Mind, Paper, Cities, Air, Heaven, Animals and Drugs.

When I got round to buying it in 1985, (having been entranced by a documentary on the band, which pre-dated Stop Making Sense, and featured footage of the band in rehearsal and live, interspersed with clips of TV evangelists, disasters, planes landing etc), it seemed like the most intelligent, dark, minimal, conceptual, artistically relevant LP I’d ever heard. Something about its urgent urbanity  tripped switches in my brain. I was living with my parents in Kings Worthy, a suburb of Winchester, and desperate to get out and do something real. The message I took from the album was that city dwelling was rich and strange and full of mystery. It was one of a few factors in making me decide to come and live in London, for which I am very grateful David Byrne et al. Now, I’m going to give the CD a spin.

If you want to know more about the LP, there’s a very good Wikipedia entry here.

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RIP Maurice Sendak

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