Lux (album)

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Lux
An abstract painting of a tree
Studio album by Brian Eno
Released 13 November 2012 (2012-11-13)
Genre Ambient
Length 76:23
Language Instrumental
Label Warp
Producer Brian Eno
Brian Eno chronology
Panic of Looking
(2011)
Lux
(2012)
Someday World
(2014)

Lux is a studio album from Brian Eno, released through Warp on 13 November 2012.[1] The album is a collection of ambient soundscapes that have been installed in art galleries and airport terminals. Critical reception has positively compared it with Eno's previous ambient work and noted that it is both relaxing as well as challenging music for those who engage it critically. In 2013, Brian Eno created a number of limited edition prints featuring the cover artwork from Lux made available only from his website.

Promotion[edit]

An ornate white hall with dozens of arches
The work was first displayed in the Great Gallery
An airport terminal with a large "Terminal 2" sign on it
The album played on a loop at Haneda's Terminal 2 for days prior to its commercial release

The music was originally commissioned alongside work in the Great Gallery of the Palace of Venaria in Turin, Italy.[2] To promote the album, Eno attended listening parties in London, New York City, and Sydney.[3] Following in the tradition of Music for Airports, the album was previewed in Tokyo's Haneda Airport for four days prior to the album's commercial release.[4] On 17 November, Eno curated a "Day of Light" promotion on his website where users were encouraged to submit digital photographs under the theme of "play of light" and he chose which photos to display to accompany a live stream of Lux.[5]

Reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
Source Rating
Metacritic 75/100 (31 reviews)[6]
Review scores
Source Rating
A.V. Club B+[7]
Drowned in Sound 8/10[8]
The Guardian 3/5 stars[9]
The Independent 4/5 stars[10]
The New York Times Favourable[11]
NME 8/10[12]
The Observer 3/5 stars[13]
Pitchfork Media 8/10[14]
PopMatters 8/10[15]
The Skinny 4/5 stars[16]
Slant Magazine 3.5/5 stars[17]
Allmusic 4/5 stars[18]

Lux has received largely positive reviews from critics; review aggregator Metacritic has given the album a normalised score of 78 indicating that it is "generally favorable."[6] Mark Shukla of The Skinny gave the album four out of five stars saying Lux is a return to Eno's ambient roots, concluding "remind us that whilst so called 'ambient music' has mutated in countless ways during the last quarter of a century, Eno's singular ability to elicit its most nourishing qualities remains undiminished."[16] Mark Richardson of Pitchfork Media considers the album a strong continuation of Eno's ambient work, saying that it is "squarely in the tradition of music that can be ignored but holds up (sometimes just barely) to closer scrutiny."[14]

Several reviewers make explicit reference to Eno's previous ambient work. Drowned in Sound's Marcus J. Moore also compares this album favourably to Eno's Discreet Music, calling him a "master of the ethos" of ambient music.[8] Caroline Sullivan of The Guardian compares it favourably to Music for Airports.[9] Andy Gill of The Independent proclaims that "Lux never bores because it's never making foreground demands on your attention."[10] Writing for Uncut, John Mulvey writes that his ambient efforts are perhaps "the best kind of Eno album", noting the textures of the music are compelling and complicated.[19]

Kitty Empire of The Observer was more subdued, calling the album "an engaging antidote to all the frantic maximalism that the future keeps springing" and awarding it three out of five stars.[13] Darryl Wright of PopMatters found the album more challenging, writing, "this is not dinner music, mood music or even music for a rainy day."[15] Jon Pareles of The New York Times echoes the sentiment by emphasising the tension built into Lux,[11] while NME's Lucy Jones praised the warmth and richness of the album and its ability to subtly shift listeners' moods.[12] The A.V. Club's Jason Heller thought that it compared favourably with previous ambient albums, calling it "a haunting embodiment of one of Eno's greatest paradoxes: music made for specific times and places that captures nothing, evokes nowhere, and is porous enough for nearly any emotion to sift through."[7] Consequence of Sound's Adam Kivel also praises the album's ability to stimulate as well as be background music, stating it "holds up to close listening and background work alike, providing material for deep thinking just as well as the scene in which a character thinks deeply."[20] Slate's Geeta Dayal praised the music's versatility, saying that it was "music for sleeping or waking,"[21] but Mark Lore of Paste explains that without the visuals to accompany the music, Lux "meanders while the listener potentially zones in and out."[22]

Andy Beta of Spin gave the album seven out of ten, commenting that "the whole thing is pretty, if a bit mild" and compares it to the 1985 album Thursday Afternoon.[23] Lee Arizuno of The Quietus shared the same comparison and called this his most successful ambient work, saying that it "is a surprisingly rich experience that's difficult to fault."[24] Matthew Phillips of Tiny Mix Tapes describes the subtlety of the music by saying that it "doesn't move the listener so much as suggest directions."[25] Chris Richards of The Washington Post emphasised the profundity of the album saying, "this is music that will make you think about how much time you have in this life and how you might like to spend it."[26]

Track listing[edit]

All pieces composed by Brian Eno

  1. "LUX 1" – 19:22
  2. "LUX 2" – 18:14
  3. "LUX 3" – 19:19
  4. "LUX 4" – 18:28

Personnel[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Adams, Gregory (26 September 2012). "Brian Eno Returns with New LUX Solo Album". Exclaim!. Retrieved 27 September 2012. 
  2. ^ Duerden, Nick (11 November 2012). "Brian Eno: 'It's Simply Not My Temperament to Look Back'". The Independent (Independent Print Limited). Retrieved 11 November 2012. 
  3. ^ "Apply to attend a LUX city listening event in Sydney or New York (London now fully subscribed)". Warp. Retrieved 21 October 2012. 
  4. ^ "Brian Eno's Lux at Haneda Airport". Time Out. Time Out. 6 November 2012. Retrieved 6 November 2012. 
  5. ^ "News: Participate in an Audiovisual Experience with Brian Eno's Lux". Inertia. 14 November 2012. Retrieved 14 November 2012. 
  6. ^ a b "Lux Reviews, Ratings, Credits, and More". Metacritic. Retrieved 22 November 2012. 
  7. ^ a b Heller, Jason (12 November 2012). "Brian Eno: Lux". A.V. Club. Retrieved 12 November 2012. 
  8. ^ a b Moore, Marcus J. (6 November 2012). "Brian Eno – Lux / Releases / Releases // Drowned in Sound". Drowned in Sound. Retrieved 6 November 2012. 
  9. ^ a b Sullivan, Caroline (8 November 2012). "Brian Eno: Lux – Review". The Guardian. Guardian Media Group. Retrieved 8 November 2012. 
  10. ^ a b Gill, Andy (10 November 2012). "Album: Brian Eno, Lux (Warp)". The Independent (Independent Print Limited). Retrieved 10 November 2012. 
  11. ^ a b Pareles, Jon (12 November 2012). "Albums by Christina Aguilera, Soundgarden and Brian Eno". The New York Times (The New York Times Company). Retrieved 12 November 2012. 
  12. ^ a b Jones, Lucy (12 November 2012). "Brian Eno – Lux". NME. IPC Media. Retrieved 12 November 2012. 
  13. ^ a b Empire, Kitty (5 November 2012). "Brian Eno: Lux – Review". The Observer. Guardian Media Group. Retrieved 10 November 2012. 
  14. ^ a b Richardson, Mark (6 November 2012). "Brian Eno: Lux | Album Reviews | Pitchfork". Pitchfork Media. Retrieved 6 November 2012. 
  15. ^ a b Wright, Darryl (12 November 2012). "Brian Eno: LUX". PopMatters. Retrieved 12 November 2012. 
  16. ^ a b Shukla, Mark (2 November 2012). "Brian Eno – LUX | Album Review | The Skinny". The Skinny. Radge Media. Retrieved 2 November 2012. 
  17. ^ Cataldo, Jesse (13 November 2012). ">Brian Eno: Lux". Slant Magazine. Retrieved 13 November 2012. 
  18. ^ Review by Thom Jurek (13 November 2012). "Lux – Brian Eno | Songs, Reviews, Credits, Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved 2 August 2013. 
  19. ^ Mulvey, John (5 November 2012). "Brian Eno, Lux". Uncut. IPC Media. Retrieved 10 November 2012. 
  20. ^ Kivel, Adam (13 November 2012). "Album Review: Brian Eno – LUX". Consequence of Sound. Retrieved 13 November 2012. 
  21. ^ Dayal, Geeta (16 November 2012). "Music to Sleep To: The Ambient Beauty of Brian Eno". Slate. The Washington Post Company. Retrieved 16 November 2012. 
  22. ^ Lore, Mark (20 November 2012). "Brian Eno: Lux :: Music :: Reviews :: Paste". Paste. Wolfgang's Vault. Retrieved 21 November 2012. 
  23. ^ Beta, Andy (13 November 2012). "Brian Eno, Lux (Warp)". Spin. Buzzmedia. Retrieved 13 November 2012. 
  24. ^ Arizuno, Lee (13 November 2012). "The Quietus | Reviews | Brian Eno". The Quietus. Retrieved 13 November 2012. 
  25. ^ Phillips, Matthew (15 November 2012). "Brian Eno – Lux". Tiny Mixtapes. Retrieved 15 November 2012. 
  26. ^ Richards, Chris (16 November 2012). "Brian Eno's Lux: A Return-to-Form Album by Rock's Quiet Legend". The Washington Post. The Washington Post Company. Retrieved 17 November 2012. 

External links[edit]