Brian Eno – “An Ending Ascent” (1983)

Artist : Brian Eno (Brian Peter George St John le Baptiste de la Salle Eno, born  on 15th May 1948, in Woodbridge, Suffolk, U.K.)

Country Of Origin : U.K. 

Track : “An Ending Ascent” (A5 track, instrumental, written by Brian Eno)

Album ” Apollo – Atmospheres And Soundtracks” (Apollo: Atmospheres and Soundtracks is the ninth solo studio album by British ambient musician Brian Eno, released in 1983. It was written, produced, and performed by Brian Eno, his brother Roger and Daniel Lanois. Music from the album appeared in the films 28 Days LaterTraffic, and Trainspotting, whose soundtrack sold approximately four million copies. Two of the songs from the album, “Silver Morning” and “Deep Blue Day”, were issued as a 7″ single on EG Records).

Label : EG Records (EGLP 53), Polydor Records (813 535-1)

Date/Year Of Release : July 1983 (recorded Grant Avenue Studio, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada 1981-1982)

Category/Music Genres : Ambient, Electronic, Experimental, Soundtracks, Space Ambient U.K. 1980s (Tracks)

Brian Eno

Artist’s photo

Image result for BRIAN ENO

Brian Eno “An Ending Ascent”

Video on YouTube

Brian Eno “An Ending Ascent”

Video on Vimeo

The track is included on the album “Apollo – Atmospheres And Soundtracks” (A5 track)

“Apollo – Atmospheres And Soundtracks” Album (released in 1983)

Brian Eno – “Apollo – Atmospheres And Soundtracks” Full Album Audio Playlist on Spotify

Album cover photo (front)

Album photo (A’ Side)

Image result for eno apollo

Tracks 

1. “Under Stars” (Brian Eno, Daniel Lanois) (4:25)
2. “The Secret Place” (Daniel Lanois, arranged Brian Eno) (3:27)
3. “Matta” (Brian Eno) (4:14)
4. “Signals” (Brian Eno, Daniel Lanois) (2:44)
5. “An Ending (Ascent)” (Brian Eno) (4:18)
6. “Under Stars II” (Brian Eno, Daniel Lanois) (3:15)
7. “Drift” (Roger Eno, Brian Eno) (3:03)
8. “Silver Morning” (Daniel Lanois) (2:35)
9. “Deep Blue Day” (Brian Eno, Daniel Lanois, Roger Eno) (3:53)
10. “Weightless” (Brian Eno, Daniel Lanois, Roger Eno) (4:28)
11. “Always Returning” (Brian Eno, Roger Eno) (3:49)
12. “Stars” (Brian Eno, Daniel Lanois) (7:57)

Line-up

Musicians: Brian Eno, Daniel Lanois, Roger Eno

Credits 

Cover Art : Russel Mills
Mastered by Greg Calbi, at Sterling Sound

Co-producer – Brian Eno, Daniel Lanois

Information about the artist 

Brian Eno, in full Brian Peter George St. John le Baptiste de la Salle Eno, (born May 15, 1948, Woodbridge, Suffolk, England), British producer, composer, keyboardist, and singer who helped define and reinvent the sound of some of the most popular bands of the 1980s and ’90s and who created the genre of ambient music.

While an art student in the late 1960s, Eno began experimenting with electronic music, and in 1971 he joined the fledgling band Roxy Music as keyboardist and technical adviser. A rivalry with singer Bryan Ferry led Eno to leave the group in 1973, whereupon he launched a solo career. No Pussyfooting (1973), a collaboration with guitarist Robert Fripp from King Crimson, used tape-echo and tape-delay techniques to create new sounds and reached the Top 30 in Britain. Eno’s next album, Here Come the Warm Jets (1973), was soon followed by the proto-punk single “Seven Deadly Finns.” In the mid-1970s Eno began developing his theory of ambient music, creating subtle instrumentals to affect mood through sound. Albums such as Discrete Music (1975), Music for Films (1978), and Music for Airports(1979) exemplified this approach.

During this period Eno also began producing albums for other artists, and his experimental approach to music making was well suited to such alternative performers as Devo, Ultravox, and David Bowie(especially on Bowie’s trilogy of albums recorded primarily in Berlin). Although Eno’s work was influential, it was not until his collaborations with Talking Heads and U2 that mainstream listeners became familiar with his sound, most notably on Talking Heads’ Top 20 album Remain in Light (1980) and U2’s chart-topping albums Unforgettable Fire (1984), The Joshua Tree (1987), and Achtung Baby(1991).

Throughout the 1990s, Eno joined a number of visual artists to provide sound tracks to installation pieces, and in 1995 he worked with Laurie Anderson on Self Storage, a series of installations housed in individual lockers at a London storage facility. Anderson provided the vocals for a track on Eno’s electronic album Drawn from Life (2000), and Eno followed with a rare vocal album of his own, Another Day on Earth (2005). He returned to the producer’s chair for Paul Simon’s critically lauded Surprise (2006) and Coldplay’s multi-platinum Viva la Vida (2008).

In 2008 Eno teamed with former Talking Heads frontman David Byrne for their first collaborative effort in nearly three decades. Adopting the self-publishing model popularized by Radiohead, Byrne and Eno released Everything That Happens Will Happen Today on the Internet, where listeners could stream the entire album for free or purchase physical or digital copies directly from the artists. Also in 2008 Eno and Peter Chilvers debuted the first of several smartphone apps that allowed the user to create generative music. Eno later collaborated with Karl Hyde of the British electronic band Underworld for the Afrobeat-inspired Someday World and the more accessible High Life (both in 2014) and with pianist Tom Rogerson on Finding Shore (2017). Among Eno’s own albums, the four-track The Ship (2016) meditated on the sinking of the Titanic and on World War I. In 2018 he released a box set of music commissioned for art pieces, Music for Installations (source : encyclopedia “Britannica”).

Information about the album/track

The track, along with the rest of the album, was composed for the film For All Mankind, a documentary on the early years of NASA. The film wasn’t completed until 1989.
Aside from those that feature country & western guitar, “An Ending (Ascent)” stands out from Brian Eno’s other ambient tracks due to its clear use of discernible (yet slow-moving) melody.
The track has appeared in a number of media uses, including in the TV series JamTop Gear and Nip/Tuck; films Traffic28 Days Later and Drive; and David Firth’s animation Salad Fingers.
Frou Frou sampled the track in their song “Hear Me Out” in 2002, as did Burial in 2006 for “Forgive” (source : “Songfacts”).

This music was originally recorded in 1983 for a feature-length documentary movie called “Apollo” later retitled For All Mankind, directed by Al Reinert. The original version of the film had no narration, and simply featured 35mm footage of the Apollo moon missions collected together roughly chronologically, and set to Eno’s music as it appears on the album. Although the film had some limited theatrical runs at art house cinemas in some cities, audience response was lukewarm. The filmmakers still felt the film could do better if it reached a wider audience, and so they re-edited the film, added commentaries from the Apollo astronauts themselves, re-structured the music, and re-titled the film in the process. Various edits of the film were shown to test audiences for further refining. As all this was going on, the film’s release was delayed until 1989. By that time several tracks on the album were omitted from the soundtrack and replaced by other pieces by Eno and other artists.

The tracks from the album that remain on the final edit of the film are:

  • “Always Returning”
  • “Drift”
  • “Silver Morning”
  • “Stars”
  • “Under Stars”
  • “The Secret Place”
  • “An Ending (Ascent)”

The newer tracks from the film that are not on the album (but appear on Music for Films III) are:

  • “Sirens” (Brian Eno, Daniel Lanois)
  • “Theme for ‘Opera'” (Brian Eno, Roger Eno)
  • “Fleeting Smile” Roger Eno)
  • “Tension Block” (Daniel Lanois)
  • “Asian River” (Brian Eno)
  • “Quixote” (Roger Eno)
  • “4-Minute Warning” (John Paul Jones)
  • “For Her Atoms” (Lydia Kavina (Theremin), Misha Malin)

In the liner notes, Eno relates that when he watched the Apollo 11 landing in 1969 he felt that the strangeness of that event was compromised by the low quality of the television transmission and an excess of journalistic discussion, and that he wished to avoid the melodramatic and uptempo way it was presented. That philosophy dominated when For All Mankind (“Apollo”) was originally released as a non-narrative collection of NASA stock footage from the Apollo program. The non-narrative version of the film with the Eno soundtrack was released on VHS video in 1990 by the National Geographic Society. An alternative version was also released by NASA featuring audio interviews but omitting the Brian Eno soundtrack.

The album contains a variety of styles. “Under Stars”, “The Secret Place”, “Matta”, “Signals”, “Under Stars II”, and “Stars” are all dark, complicated textures similar to those on Eno’s previous album Ambient 4/On Land. “An Ending (Ascent)”, “Drift”, and “Always Returning” are smoother electronic pieces. “Silver Morning”, “Deep Blue Day”, and “Weightless” are country and western inspired ambient pieces featuring Daniel Lanois on guitar.

Country music, which Eno listened to as a child in Woodbridge on American armed forces radio, was used to “give the impression of weightless space.” 

“Under Stars” is a recurring theme in the album, first appearing as an ambient electronic bed behind a treated guitar. “Under Stars II” is the same composition, but with different effects and treatments. “Stars” is the pure background texture without the guitar.

The track “An Ending (Ascent)” was sampled in the song “Hear Me Out” by the group Frou Frou, in “Forgive” by British producer Burial, additionally in “Ascent” by Michael Dow, a London electronic music producer, and has been used in several films such as Traffic and 28 Days Later, and in the London Olympiad opening (the memorial wall section).

Many of the tracks on the album were recorded with soft “attacks” of each note, then played backwards, with multiple heavy echoes and reverb added in both directions to merge the notes into one long flowing sound with each note greatly overlapping each adjacent note, producing the “floating” effects that Eno desired.

The Yamaha DX7 was used extensively by Eno on the album. “…so many processings and reprocessings – it’s a bit like making soup from the leftovers of the day before, which in turn was made from leftovers…” (making the album) Eno said, “…. Well, I love that music anyway …. what I find impressive about that music is that it’s very concerned with space in a funny way. Its sound is the sound of a mythical space, the mythical American frontier space that doesn’t really exist anymore. That’s why on Apollo I thought it very appropriate, because it’s very much like “space music” — it has all the connotations of pioneering, of the American myth of the brave individual.

n the summer of 2009 a live version of the album was performed at two concerts in the IMAX cinema of London’s Science Museum and in an arrangement by South Korean composer Woojun Lee for the ensemble Icebreaker with featured artist B J Cole on pedal steel guitar. The album was performed in its entirety, with the tracks in a different order, to a silent and edited version of For All Mankind, closer to the original conception than the released version of the film. A revised version was performed twice at the 2010 Brighton Festival, where Eno was guest artistic director, before subsequent touring in the UK, Ireland and mainland Europe.

Due to the heavily processed nature of the studio-based sound on the original tracks, an exact reproduction would have been impossible to reproduce in a live context, so Woojun Lee chose to apply a free interpretation of the sound world and to make an impression of the original tracks through use of Icebreaker’s instrumental resources.

The performances from Brighton were recorded and an album of the live interpretation was released in June 2012 (source : “Wikipedia”).

External Links 

Brian Eno – “Apollo – Atmospheres And Soundtracks” Full Album Video Playlist on YouTube

Brian Eno – “Apollo – Atmospheres And Soundtracks” Full Album Audio Playlist on Spotify

Brian Eno – “An Ending Ascent” Audio/Video file on Last Fm

Brian Eno Artist’s Homepage

Brian Eno Artist’s Page on Facebook

Brian Eno Artist’s Page on Twitter

Brian Eno – Full Albums Download Links on Lágrima Psicodélica

 

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