By Eliot Van Buskirk
David Byrne and Brian Eno have released their first collaboration in 30 years, an eleven song album called Everything That Will Happen Will Happen Today.
As one would expect from innovators of this caliber, the album is being released in a very 2008 fashion, with help from TopSpin, a company we profiled earlier that allows premiere artists to release stuff online in new ways.
Eno had been working these tracks for eight years until he decided that he needed "a professional" to handle vocal duties. When he ran into Byrne a few years ago, he played him the tracksm and Byrne agreed to add vocals and a bit of music.
"For the most part, Brian did the music and I wrote some tunes, words and sang," says Byrne on the album's website. "It's familiar but completely new as well. We're pretty excited."
These are satisfying tracks to my ear, but since they've allowed us to embed the entire album, you can decide for yourself. The first track, "Home," appears to contain melodic references to two Simon & Garfunkel tracks: "Homeward Bound" and "Sounds of Silence." And one phrase of the title track "Everything That Happens" sound a bit similar to a female-sung song whose chorus I remember but whose name eludes me, and puts me somewhat in the mind of Spiritualized.
But Byrne and Eno have penned completely original songs, here, of course. These fleeting similarities come off as sonic tips of the hat rather than finger-wag-worthy appropriation.
You can stream the entire (excellent) album using [below] widget, navigating to whichever songs you want and listening to Byrne and Eno describe how the album was made. If you want a permanent version that can be played on portable and home devices, Byrne and Eno offer three purchasing options.
Digital: $9 gets you all eleven tracks in the 320 Kbps MP3 format, with an MP3+FLAC option available for the same price. Both come with 17 pages of digital liner notes.
CD+Digital: For $12 plus shipping and handling, you get a CD that will ship by November 30, plus immediate download of all tracks (MP3 or FLAC) and the liner notes.
Deluxe Package: For $70 plus shipping and handling, you can have a limited edition CD version, four exclusive bonus tracks, a short film about the album, a custom screensaver and a miniature hardbound book version of the liner notes. As with the CD+Digital release, this one ships by November 30, but the digital components are available for immediate download.
In exchange for a confirmed email address, you can download an MP3 of one song, "Strange Overtones."