David Byrne & Brian Eno
Everything That Happens Will Happen Today
Todomundo, Ltd./Opal, 2008
By Ron Raymond
WMPG Music Director
Alt-rock legends David Byrne and Brian Eno have teamed together for the first time since 1981’s brilliant My Life In The Bush Of Ghosts on a release that, on the one hand, is less experimental and funky than Bush Of Ghosts, and on the other hand, is a more mature recording. Bush Of Ghosts was kind of like a first cousin to the Talking Heads; part of its sound, most notably on the track “The Jezebel Spirit, was very similar to the Talking Heads’ classic “I Zimbra” (from 1979’s Fear Of Music). The new album, though, tends to lean more towards David Byrne’s most recent solo efforts, including 2001’s Look Into The Eyeball, and especially, 2004’s Grown Backwards.
Right from the opening chords of “Home,” the opening song on Everything That Happens Will Happen Today, you can tell instantly tell this album will be quite different than its predecessor. You will feel at “Home” as you reconnect with David Byrne’s unmistakable vocals (which just get better with age I think), and Brian Eno’s always impressive instrumentations.
“Upon starting this project, we quickly realized we were making something like electronic gospel, music in which singing becomes the central event, but whose sonic landscapes are atypical of such vocal-centered tracks. This notion tapped into my long love affair with gospel music, which, curiously, was inadvertently initiated by David and the Talking Heads,” says Brian Eno of the making of the new album. I find this most evident on the songs “The River,” the beautiful “Everything That Happens,” “One Fine Day” and the album’s lovely closer, “The Lighthouse.” Album highlights also include the brilliant six-and-a-half-minute track, “I Feel My Stuff,” which features (noticeably on guitar) Roxy Music’s own Phil Manzanera and the light funk of the fun “Strange Overtones.” If you were to have purchased this album because you wanted more of My Life In The Bush Of Ghosts, I honestly don’t think you would have brought it back to the store. I truly think what WILL happen with Everything That Happens Will Happen Today is that you will enjoy it for what it is – an good, solid follow-up from a couple of guys who certainly know how to put out good, solid follow-up records.