Brian Eno’s new album returns him to the ‘Discreet Music’ he’s been making since the mid-1970s, and in all truth his style has hardly changed at all. This is incredibly reassuring, however, because his brand of ambient music is incredibly calming, whether experienced through headphones or on surround sound. Despite the calming nature there is a darker undertone at work here, and while a lot of the harmonies Eno uses have a comforting resonance, the occasional bursts of activity have a less settling nervous energy. The resonant music wins out though, and ‘Reflections’ proceeds like a big asteroid moving slowly in orbit. Cool tracers pass across its surface occasionally, and here we see the work’s origins as a timeless piece of music, designed to be played for days through the app Eno wrote it on. As such ‘Reflections’ is a highlight of just under an hour, and it works its subtle magic beautifully, taking away the worries of things like public transport as it does so.
Ben Hogwood
4 out of 5