Brian Eno

There are hundreds of manufacturers always producing dvices that in general do the same things. Since they have slight structural differences if you take one and fool around with it and give it a good kick it will actually do something that it wasn’t designed to do. I have this relationship with my synthesizers. I’ve had them for so long, and I’ve never had them serviced, so that now practically all of their functions operate differently from what they were designed to do. They do very interesting things now, but that means nobody else can use them either.

I mostly used the studio devices, because I knew what they had. Generally I find I’m happy to use whatever’s around. If there’s nothing there I’ll make something. For example, one of the things I tried doing was getting a tiny loudspeaker and feeding the instruments off the tape through this tiny speaker and then through this huge long plastic tube – about 50 feet long – that they used to clean out the swimming pool in the place where I was staying. You get this really hollow, cavernous, weird sound, a very nice sound. We didn’t use it finally, but nonetheless we well could have.

People always focus on people like me who use synthesizers, right, which are explicitly electronic and therefore obvious. “Ah, yes, that’s electronic music.” But they don’t realize that so is the concept of actually taking a piece of extant music and literally re-collaging it, taking chunks out and changing the dynamics radically and creating new rhythmic structures with echo and all that. That’s real electronic music, as far as I’m concerned.

A lot of the so-called systems composers have this thing that the system is always right. You don’t fiddle with it at all. Well, I don’t think that. I think the system is as right as you judge it to be. If for some reason you don’t like a bit of it you must trust your intuition on that. I don’t take a doctrinaire approach to systems.

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