Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Jon Hassell/Brian Eno

  • Fourth World Vol. 1: Possible Musics [Editions EG, 1980] A

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Fourth World Vol. 1: Possible Musics [Editions EG, 1980]
For anybody but an expert (in what, though--anthropological minimalism?), preferences regarding, shall we say, ambient esoteric kitsch are pretty, shall we say, subjective. But I find this piece of cheese the most seductive (and best) thing Eno's put his name on since Another Green World. In addition to trumpeter, auteur, and ethnomusicological gadabout Hassell, the crucial voices belong to Brazilian percussionist Naná Vasconcelos and Senegalese percussionist Aiyb Dieng, but the overall effect is Arab--heard casually at medium distance in Dakar, maybe. You could also call it head music. A