Unauthorised item in the bagging area

Thursday, 10 December 2020

Harold Budd

Harold Budd has died aged 84,  of complications arising from Covid. He was a master of ambient music, a composer, pianist and guitarist who played an enormous role in developing what ambient music sounded like in the 1970s and 80s, often with Brian Eno (their joint albums Ambient 2: The Plateaux Of Mirror and The Pearl are incredible works, Harold's soft, atmospheric piano playing at the centre of the sound. If ambient music has a centre). Eno, Budd and Daniel Lanois made The Pearl in 1984, a highlight in the back catalogue of all three men, an album reprising the piano textures and treated electronics of Plateaux along with nature recordings. He worked with Cocteau Twins and then later with Robin Guthrie-  their 2007 Before The Day Breaks album is a beautiful blend of treated guitars, FX and piano pieces. Ambient music, by definition, is supposed to be background music. Budd's works carry emotional weight that make it much more than wallpaper to chill out to. 

The Pearl


Nick L said...

Harold Budd obviously took a bit of inspiration from post punk, as in 1994 he released Through The Hill, a collaboration with Andy Partridge from XTC, who were then on their self-imposed "strike" after Virgin refused to change the conditions of their record deal. Jazzy and almost ambient in places, it's definitely worth a listen.

Anonymous said...

'Memory Gongs' reverberate for ever. All the old masters are slipping into the great ambience. RIP Harold.