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on 15 March 2005
Back in 2002 I, on the cusp of a 2 week holiday in Cornwall, I was introduced to Brian Eno. A fan of ambient music up until this point, Eno was simply in a league of his own, as I soon discovered.
I played this album whilst walking around the coast and along the beach, and the sound was powerful. Not because of Eno's use of the instruments and production, but the space he leaves for you to fill in. And its that, that makes Eno the true Ambient master, and a genre which he has pretty much defined.
I could write pages on this album, and his other ambient work, but its an album for you to take, and make your own.
Simply: Its Beautiful, Its Therapeutic, And you can own it.
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on 29 June 2007
I was pretentious enough as a teenager to make this the soundtrack to my alienation. I listened to it on headphones on lunchbreaks.

Years later, it stands up as an album of incredible breadth and emotion, from the heartbreaking descents of Sparrowfall to the paranoid isolation of M386 and A Measured Room.

There is nothing on Music For Films that isn't fully formed and worthy of inclusion. Among Eno's masterpieces, this is perhaps the most neglected and best realised.
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on 11 October 2001
If you have heard of 'ambient' music and are wondering about buying an album, look no further. relaxing, easily listenable and along with Music For Films II a great collection of pieces. Amateur or professional film directors look no further for some decent background music. To paraphrase a well known advert, 'it does what it says on the cover'. Turn on, tune in, drop out (for forty odd minutes anyway!).
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on 3 January 2012
I think when Eno made the bits n pieces for this album, he was thinking more of those empty parts of certain artistic films that show short shots of landscapes and settings - establishment shots that just put you in the picture - these are normally fleeting and without any kind of musical accompaniment, and he took up the notion of making "sounds" that might accompany such trifling necessities. Cedrtainly not music for the kind of films featuring explosions, alien invasions, incomprehensible body counts or automobile chases. Nice stuff if you just want to chill for a bit, and the beauty of the shortness of the tracks is that if there's a dull one you don't like, it's over in a flash. But these are all very similar, composed along the lines of almost all of his ambient work - you know, the stuff he thinks he invented, but really just continued what others had done before him since time began, really only giving it a name - Ambient, New Age - so as to draw attention to his own partricular skill set.
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on 28 September 2010
More interlude than full ambiance, The pieces are shorter and more instrument based but still with the hypnotic feel of the ambient series. Shorter more sketch like, some tracks you want to be longer but that's because they are great, interesting short ideas. A compilation more than an album. Good stuff. Track one is brilliant.
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on 26 March 2012
I wouldn't recommend this as an introduction to Brian Eno's work. This is his sixth album I've purchased, which on reflection is probably about the right stage.

Music for films has the same feel as a book of short stories, with some more experimental than others. There's no particular flow to the album, you could shuffle most of it without changing your experience. Some of the tracks are very strong and have been a great addition to my own collection, I particularly appreciated Aragon and Final Sunset. Others felt a bit less relevant in parts, although I still enjoyed the chance to hear different ideas being tried out in such a public way. Or was the idea to play a trick on your mind, each track reminding you of a film you've never seen? That's what I like most of Brian Eno's work - you interpret it in your own way - and that way can change over time with you.

I'm glad I bought the album, just don't make it your first.
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on 1 October 2010
Ah, music for films. There was a time in the eighties when the music press - in the absence of anything intelligent to say about a piece of instrumental music - used to go "it's like a soundtrack for a film of the imagination". Eno perhaps unsurprisingly, beat them to it by over a decade, Music For Films having been originally released in the mid 70s.

But if you play this alongside tracks like (for instance) Die Nacht Der Himmel by Popol Vuh, it's easy to see which one is really a section of film score and which isn't. Or Gabriel Yared's faintly hilarious Humecter la Monture. That's not a criticism of Eno's tracks here as pieces of music, more a criticism of the idea that film has anything to do with it.

This 2009 reissue is a bit perfunctory, but it does the job, and has a great picture of a youngish Eno on the back cover looking like Martin Amis circa 1975 impersonating a Swiss philosopher.

Trackwise there are one or two real greats here:

From the same Hill - strong spaghetti western guitar over atmospherics that get more magical the further they recede from the ear. Imagine a cross between Another Green World and Durutti Column's For A Western.

Final Sunset - almost up there with Eno's ambient gear. Proper puts you in mid of the last two pages of Camus' L'Etranger. It doesn't get sunnier than that.

All in all, a good reissue.

Title of review from a song by Phil Collins, who played drums on Music For Films tracks 1,13,16... and starred in a few films himself.
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on 21 December 2015
1978. Highly in demand as a producer, Eno was jetting to and fro across the Atlantic, shaping the sound of new albums by Talking Heads and David Bowie, among others. During the gaps in his busy schedule he found time to gather up this collection of mostly unused instrumental vignettes from his own studio work. They make a satisfyingly coherent album combining the restless groove of tracks like Energy Fools The Magician (from Before and After Science) with serene interludes more reminiscent of Music for Airports, the first of his Ambient series, which came out in the same year.
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on 13 September 2015
Slowly completing my collection of Eno's Ambient series. This is up there with the rest. My preference so far is On Land but I enjoy this.
The quality of sound as on all his albums is taken for granted and is top notch
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on 12 February 2001
These 18 brief tracks seem to merge seamlessly with one another, gradually creating an atmosphere that is at once melancholy and soothing. Each track develops a simple theme, creating layers of haunting ambience. This music has a mysterious quality, and impresses itself gently on the listener.Perhaps seeming a little vague on first hearing, this plangent music gradually takes a hold on one's imagination, which can then enjoy visualising fictitious scenes from 'films' for which Eno may have been writing. This is music which gently persuades, rather than rudely insists, that one listens. It seeps into the consciousness, rather like the scent of woodsmoke on a woodland walk in winter.Its seductive melodies and plaintive tones make this the ideal music for relaxing and allowing the cares of the day to drop away. On a separate note, and for any other Primary school teachers out there, this music makes great inspiration for Dance and Drama!
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