An album of poetry set to music might not be what the world wants from Brian Eno: Collaborator on some of the most-loved albums by U2, David Bowie, and Talking Heads, the veteran super-producer is also the father of ambient music, yet nothing hogs a sonic stage like someone talking. Enter British poet Rick Holland, whose concise, alliterative abstraction conveys an innate musicality. Playing most of the accompaniment himself, Eno surrounds a small cast of speakers (barring strong accents and precise diction) with sounds that recall Eno's career highlights. The mournful guitar melodies of "Pour It Out" and "A Title" evoke Another Green World's placid intricacies while simpler, piano-led tracks like "Dreambirds" are bathed in clouds of echo that suggest Music For Airports. The deluxe edition of Drums presents Holland's words in an Eno-illustrated hardback art book that features a second disc of instrumental variations. Combine them both for your own karaoke poetry slam.
Listen to "Pour It Out":