Koyaanisqatsi – Philip Glass

Here is another one of my guilty intellectual pleasures, from American’s favourite avant-gardist. This was the first Philip Glass album I owned (and I have been wandering around, alone, on the slippery slope ever since) and it was purely because of seeing the film.
I think this is one of the few times when a soundtrack really doesn’t need the visuals (Thomas Newman and Micheal Nyman would also get this acolade). This album stands alone, completely independent of the film for which it was conceived. It is probably the most accessible Philip Glass album too with some classic moments. One of my favourites is Pruit Igoe, it starts slow then those big Glass melody lines kick in, sounding like the whole orchestra is playing the same 5 notes. The Grid is also great, following similar Glass by numbers rules (slow start, gradual build up, lots of instruments playing the same couple of notes).
Warning; Don’t try and whistle any of these tunes while standing at a bus stop, you could find you become a social outcast, I know, because I did, and I have.

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